The announcement was made on Sunday at the Opening Ceremony, held at Padang Padang beach in front of a crowd of several hundred fans gathered from all over the world to join in blessing the event with good waves, a safe competition, and officially christen the start of the holding period to the one of a kind tube riding invitational.
Among the invitees this year is Defending Champion Jack Robinson (AUS), WCT legend Taj Burrow (AUS), Mason Ho (HAW) and young guns like Benji Brand (ZAF) and Barron Mamiya (HAW). Indonesia will be represented by 2x time Rip Curl Cup Champion Mega Semadhi and former Champion Garut Widiarta, among others. Joining the heavy hitters are the 4 local winners of the Local Trials, held in 6-foot spitting tubes at Padang Padang on Friday: Raditya Rondi (Kuta, Bali), Agus “Dag Dag” Sumertayasa (Bingin, Bali), Koki Hendrawan (Uluwatu, Bali), Mustofa Jeksen (Kuta, Bali). The four Trials winners were awarded their tickets to the Main Event on stage Sunday.
All 16 surfers received a personal GoPro HERO7 Black camera as part of the RipCurlxGoPro Challenge. The Rip Curl Cup surfers will have from now until July 26th to capture their best GoPro footage while surfing the best waves around Indonesia during the waiting period – and at Padang Padang during the main event. With a USD $2,000 prize purse up for grabs for the best GoPro waves captured, there is sure to be some amazing content created. Fans can follow #RipCurlxGoPro to watch the latest entries as they are submitted by the athletes. The winner of the RipCurlxGoPro Challenge will be announced at the Rip Curl Cup Closing Party at Ulu Cliff House on July 26th.
“I’ve used my GoPro in heavy waves before and captured some amazing results,” Rip Curl Cup invitee Garut Widiarta said. "Some of my favorite all-time surf clips have been captured on my GoPro, and best of all, it was me who took the photo! I’m super excited to try the new HERO7 Black and try out all the new features. Can’t wait to take it out at big Padang Padang!”
Meanwhile, 2x Rip Curl Cup Champion and pride of Balinese surfing, Mega Semadhi, said he’s looking forward to a rematch with the big names, no matter how it plays out.
“Padang Padang is one of the most amazing waves in Indonesia,” Semadhi said.
It's the perfect spot to surf with some of the best tube riders in the world. When you get that combination of perfect waves and good surfing for one special day, everyone is always going to leave stoked no matter what result they get" - Mega Semadhi
The opening ceremony was capped off with the traditional Balinese kecak dance performance, to ask the Balinese gods for permission to hold the contest at this sacred spot and for a massive Padang swell to arrive during the waiting period.
A series of Indian Ocean swells are forecast to reach Bali in the coming weeks and contest directors are monitoring them closely. According to Surfline, the official surf forecast partner of the Rip Curl Cup, the first significant swell will reach Bali on July 3rd-4th, and another backup swell is currently on the charts for July 6th-7th. Contest directors are monitoring these swells closely should they develop into potential contest swells to run the Rip Curl Cup.