After making the most of the somewhat biased one world ranking system to stretch out his pro career by a few extra years, Kieren Perrow will now be charged with establishing a fairer, more level playing field on the ASP world tours for 2014. Photo: ASP
In a recent low key press release, the ASP have declared they'll been returning to a two-tier ranking system in 2014. Four years down the line since they introduced the one world ranking system (in 2010), elite World Tour surfers will no longer be able to rely on points they've earned on the WCT to then go and re-qualify through the WQS. Points earned on the CT will from now on exclusively count towards the CT ranking system and not the WQS tour.
“The tweaks and alterations that have been made to the technical aspects of the sport over the past several years have been done so with one guiding principle – create a fair and balanced platform for the world’s best surfing to be rewarded," Kieren Perrow said. “The combined ranking served a purpose throughout its time on tour, but the Commissioner’s Office believes that a separated ranking is the best path forward."
But with only three surfers (Australians Mitch Crews and Dion Atkinson plus former Basque CTer Aritz Aranburu) managing to qualify for the WCT through the one world ranking system for 2014 (and only 4 rookies in 2013), opportunities were up until now clearly stacked in favour of those already on tour. And in the last four year period, the ASP have faced a fair amount of public protest and confusion from both WQSers and WCTers alike. The most notable of course coming in the form of Bobby Martinez' rant/career suicide on the live Quiksilver Pro webcast in New York, although who's side he was really fighting for we're still not sure...
Elsewhere, the size of the playing fields are not set to change as they did in 2010 when the world tour field was reduced from a 45-man system to a 32-man field. The 2015 ASP Top 34 will therefore consist of the following:
- Top 22 finishers on the 2014 ASP WCT rankings (best 9 of 11 WCT results)
- Top 10 finishers on the 2014 ASP QS rankings (best 5 of all QS results)
- Two ASP Wildcards
Fingers crossed this should ensure an extra couple new fresh faces on tour every year!