Quiksilver and the World Surf League today make surfing history announcing the return of the most anticipated and exciting surf event in twenty-five years, the Quiksilver Pro G-Land, which will hold a coveted spot on the 2020 WSL Championship Tour from 4th – 14th June 2020.
The Quiksilver Pro G-Land will offer surfers on the tour the ultimate challenge, taking them out of their comfort zones and into one of the most remote locations in competitive surfing history in Grajagan Bay, Indonesia. The competition will make its much-awaited return to the raw, remote location where the jungle meets the ocean and let the world’s most talented surfers take on the waves.
Today’s announcement confirms the rumors within the surfing community. It was Quiksilver who brought the inaugural Pro G-Land to the tour in 1995 and challenged surfers to take on the isolated conditions, with Kelly Slater winning the first competition and inspiring the infamous ‘Dream Tour.’ Twenty five years after the Asian Financial Crisis marked the end of the G-Land event, the brand is bringing it back to the tour for 2020, continuing to showcase surf travel and chasing the perfect waves.
G-Land, also known as Plengkung Beach, is an internationally renowned surf break situated on the Grajagan Bay, Alas Purwo National Park, East Java, Indonesia about half a day by road from the popular tourist destinations of Bali. G-Land is most commonly reached via boat charter from Bali.
In 1972, a group of American surfers organized the first expedition to G-Land. Two surfers went ahead by local transport overland, arrived in Grajagan village near the river mouth and had to walk about 20km along the beach with their boards and food supplies setting up base camp for the boats arrival with more supplies and boards from Bali. They had very little fresh water.
Soon after the discovery, Mike Boyum helped set up the first surf camp at G-Land, which started the surf camp concept that has spread around the world. Balinese surfer Bobby Radiasa took over the operation in the late 70s and still runs it today.
Competing in the most exciting contest in surfing history will be the winners of this year’s world championship tour.
“Bringing the Quiksilver Pro G-Land back to the surf calendar has long been an ambition of Quiksilver and 2020 is the perfect time for our surfers to get back out to Grajagan Bay and really return to raw,” said Garry Wall, General Manager of Quiksilver. “We want to challenge our athletes and inspire future generations, and this competition will do just that, it’s time for a little disruption.”
Kelly Slater, unprecedented Surf Champion and inaugural winner of the Quiksilver G-Land Pro, said: “The greatest ever tour event is back! Great move. Might need to win that thing again…”
A very long, world-class, barreling left hand reef/point break breaks along the east side of Grajagan Bay. It has long been considered one of the world’s best left hand waves. The correct name of the point upon which the main wave breaks is “Plengkung.” The wave becomes shallower and more critical the further down the point one rides the wave. It is one of the most consistently rideable waves in the world in season, with offshore trade winds and often plentiful swell between the months of, roughly, mid April to mid October.
The G-Land surf break has been divided up into several sections. The first, at the top of the point, is called “Kongs,” which breaks up to several hundred metres in length, and can hold quite large sizes (from about 2 to 12 feet+, Hawaiian scale). It is not usually a barrel, nor genuinely world-class, but more a series of takeoff zones with some long wall sections, although it can also barrel on occasions. This is also where surfers can find the ‘key-hole’ which is a section of the reef that allows a more forgivable paddle out. This section picks up a lot of swell, and is rarely less than 3 feet, and can be a saviour when the rest of the point is too small. This wave can sometimes link up with the next section called “Moneytrees.”
Moneytrees works from about 2 to 10 feet (Hawaiian scale, or about 4 to 20 feet wave faces), usually breaking over several hundred metres, and is a long, testing, barreling, world-class wave. The barrels become more critical the lower the tide and the larger the swell. Moneytrees may also occasionally link up with the next section called “Speedies,” with an outside takeoff section between the two called “Launching Pads.” Launching Pads can catch the surfer off guard, as it can break a significant way out to sea in larger swells. “Speedies” (named after how fast the wave breaks) is the heaviest wave at G-Land, but can be a perfect, very round barrel for several hundred metres, rideable from about 2 to 8 feet+ (Hawaiian scale). It usually needs larger swells, and low tide can be very dangerous. Most severe injuries at G-Land have occurred at “Speedies.”
It is not common to ride a wave more than about 300–400 metres at G-Land, even though the section of the point where rideable waves break is considerably longer (over 1 km long), because the waves usually don’t link up with each other.
The dry season (May to October) is far and away the best time to go. That is when the offshore southeast trade winds blow and the swell, pouring out of the Southern Ocean, is at its biggest and most consistent.
“The world’s best surfing happens on the WSL Championship Tour,” Adrian Buchan, CT surfer and Surfers’ Representative, said. “Never before has that been more apparent than in recent seasons and the 2020 calendar looks amazing. It’s a really exciting time to be on tour. G-Land was where the Dream Tour was born and it’s so exciting to be heading back there. I grew up watching the likes of Kelly (Slater) and Tom Carroll compete there and I can’t wait to see how this generation of surfers approach the wave.”
The world’s best male and female surfers will compete against each other in a very special year for the sport.
The year 2020 marks surfing’s debut as an official Olympic discipline. Japan will host the elite of surfing from July 24 to August 9.