The 2022 Vans US Open of Surfing Concludes in Surf City U.S.A.
The 2022 Vans US Open of Surfing (VUSOS) came to a close in Huntington Beach, Calif. yesterday after nine days of world-class surfing, skateboarding and BMX competitions as well as a full calendar of engaging creative activities for the entire family. Celebrating the quintessential Southern California beach culture, the world’s largest action sports festival welcomed large crowds who flocked to the pier to cheer on their favorite surfers and filled the Vans Skatepark across the sand. Anchoring the nine-day festival were the World Surf League’s Challenger Series, Vans Duct Tape Invitational, and the Vans Showdown. The event footprint spanned 13 acres of beach on the south side of the Huntington Beach Pier from July 30 through August 7, 2022.
Over the course of the event, Vans’ Vice President of Promotions and Events, Steve Van Doren, thanked fans by grilling more than 12,000 hot dogs and 2,500 sliders during lunchtime every day in the Van Doren Village. The theme of this year’s Vans US Open of Surfing focused on the importance of environmental responsibility with eco-consciousness integrated into the activations, showcasing the connection of sustainability with surf culture and surf products.
World Surf League’s Challenger Series (Men & Women)
The Vans US Open of Surfing showcased the fourth stop of the WSL Challenger Series with 160 of the world’s best and rising talent who competed for Championship Tour qualification.
Following a massive Finals day of competition, Hawaiians Bettylou Sakura Johnson and ABC’s “Ultimate Surfer” champion Ezekiel Lau were crowned victors of the World Surf League (WSL) Challenger Series. Sakura Johnson and Lau took critical wins at the halfway mark of the Challenger Series season in their mission to rejoin the Championship Tour (CT). Australia’s Macy Callaghan and Brazil’s Joao Chianca came in second.
“I’m so stoked, I’ve always wanted to win the US Open, it’s been an event I’ve watched since I was a young kid,” said Lau. “Andy Irons won a few years back, he was my role model, and this is for him and Sunny and all the Hawaiians. When Bettylou won her (Final heat) I was like, it’s up to me now, I gotta put this away.”
“It’s been a long week here at Huntington, but I have all the support and everything I need, I’m healthy, I’ve been training for this, I’m super fortunate to take the win,” said Sakura Johnson. “It gives me a ton of confidence (winning the event). This is one of the biggest events we have on the Challenger Series, everyone is here watching. I’ve always wanted to win a comp out here and I’m super stoked I was able to do it today.”
Hayley Wilson and Jhancarlos Gonzalez are victorious at the Vans Showdown.
For the second time at Huntington Beach, the local skate community witnessed the Vans Showdown, a unique “pointless” street skating contest, far removed from traditional skate formats. Aiming to promote the fun and cultural side of skateboarding, while showcasing the best skaters in the world, it was Hayley Wilson and Jhancarlos Gonzalez who came out on top.
Big thanks to the skate community and brand partners Quasi, Palace, Alltimers, Spitfire, Baker, and Hockey for making today a memorable moment in the history of street skateboarding.
Vans Duct Tape Invitational
Two-time WSL Longboard Tour champion and reigning Vans Duct Tape Invitational winner Kelis Kaleopa’a (HAW) and three-time World Champion Taylor Jensen (USA) topped the podium at the second of three stops for WSL Longboard Tour.
Kaleopa’a defeated three-time WSL Longboard Champion Honolua Blomfield in a head-to-head Hawaiian Final. Kaniela Stewart, also representing Hawaii, was runner-up to Jensen in the men’s competition.
“I tried to pick clean rights, make sure I got the reform, finish strong and put it all together, said Jensen. “These are all the best surfers in the world. I’ve had a couple bad results so to get a win here close to home sets me up for going to Malibu and I’m happy with where I am.”
“Hugging my cousin (Stewart) in the water after that final was just so heartwarming, “said Kaleopa’a. “Literally my whole entire family and friends and our surf community back at home are my motivation when I’m out here because we come from such a special place. I grew up my entire life surfing around my uncles and aunties, I do this for them as a thank you for introducing me to this sport, this passion I love so much.”
Kevin Peraza and Perris Benegas claim first ever Vans BMX Waffle Cup victory
With excited crowds last weekend, the first-ever Vans BMX Waffle Cup Street competition held on American soil concluded its final rounds, awarding decorated riders Kevin Peraza and Perris Benegas as the event’s overall winners. The course featured obstacles designed by BMX partners & associated Nonprofit organizations, The Bloom, Radshare and Cult BMX. Showcasing over 50 of the world’s best BMX riders, the Vans BMX Waffle Cup also celebrates originality, style, and innovation. The 2022 Vans BMX Waffle Cup champions prize parity for competitors and matching podium winnings for men and women.
“A weekend full of amazing riding and good times! It was so good having the community back together. I’m so honored to be leaving the Vans Waffle Cup with the win. The support from Vans in BMX is unreal. Seeing The Bloom BMX’s feature was so special showcasing their endless support in women’s BMX. Something truly special and I’m grateful to have been a part of it. Best event of the year so far,” said Benegas.
For full results and additional information, please visit: VansUSOpenofSurfing.com.
Recognized as the largest professional sports competition and action sports festival in the world, the Vans US Open of Surfing is currently sanctioned by the World Surf League and operated in conjunction with IMG, the event owner. Official partners of this year’s event include Vans, Visit Huntington Beach, Red Bull, Flying Embers, Hydro Flask, Shiseido, 805, Pacifico, Sambazon, StillHouse, Youtheory, BF Goodrich, Fu Wax, Boxed Water, and Just Egg.
Vans®, a VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC) brand, is the original action sports footwear, apparel, and accessories brand. Vans® authentic collections are sold in 97 countries through a network of subsidiaries, distributors, and international offices. Vans® has over 2,000 retail locations globally including owned, concession and partnership doors. The Vans® brand promotes creative self-expression in youth culture across action sports, art, music and street culture and delivers progressive platforms such as Vans Checkerboard Day, Vans Park Series, Vans Triple Crown of Surfing®, Vans Custom Culture, and Vans’ cultural hub and international music venue, House of Vans.
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