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It's that time of year when everyone is back home, not yet thinking about the next contest, rating points, Kelly's new haircut or location for the RC Pro Search 2011... But underneath the apparent calmness and industry hibernation, there are intense contract negotiations in the signing. Better than Xmas shopping, companies are buying, reinforcing, consolidating teams not unlike soccer or rugby clubs. Course, you've heard the news about Julian Wilson signing to Nike 6.0 and Steph Gilmore entering the Quiksilver Womens team. But it's funny how in mainstream sports salaries are made public, whereas with surfing these things are kept under wraps...

Back to our transfer subject, we've got another news for you: The Portuguese Tiger has also jumped ship, joining the Quiksilver crew and his long time friends on the team. Tiago Pires will be busy in the next few weeks shooting with a new logo on his board and getting ready for his new sponsor's event, the Quik Pro Goldy coming soon to you via webcast. Rumors have it that he could be heading to some remote Atlantic island with fellow team rider Aritz for some intense training. More on that shortly...