• Rio de Janeiro hosts the Billabong Girls Pro 2008

Rio de Janeiro city is about to be the world’s women surfing capital with the upcoming Billabong Girls Pro Rio. From September 08th to 18th, around 80 riders from several countries will be fighting for a US$ 105 thousand prizemoney and 1500 points in the ranking. After having been organized for two consecutive years in Itacaré, South coastline of Bahia State, this year´s Billabong Girls Pro lands in the "Marvelous City", bringing all its charm to Barra da Tijuca beach. A second structure at Macumba beach will be settled, as an alternative, if surfing conditions at Barra beach are not good enough. “Rio de Janeiro was for many years the center of the greatest surfing competitions in Brazil and we are very pleased for bringing back to this city a big event like this. We are working with two options of structure in two different beaches so that we can take better advantage of the waves conditions. Thus, Billabong Girls Pro Rio promises to repeat the success of the two previous years and definitely enters into the City’s sport calendar”, says Gustavo Belloc, Billabong Brazil Marketing Manager. Billabong Girls Pro is licensed by ASP (Association of Surfing Professional), the ultimate surf entity that rules the world’s professional tour, and is formed by 2 competitions, the ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS), access division to the world’s surfing elite and the ASP Women’s World Championship Tour (WCT), first division of professional surf. The 11th stop of the World Qualifying Series tour, which takes place on September 08th and 09th, will be attended by several athletes from Brazil and abroad, who will be fighting for 1.500 points to the access division ranking and a US$ 20 thousand prize money. As to the selected team of 17 surfers who join the world’s surf elite division, the fight is for a US$ 85 thousand prize money in the 4th stop of the ASP Women’s World Championship Tour. Presently, the Peruvian Sofia Mulanovich is leading the ranking. The Brazilian surfers Silvana Lima and Jacqueline Silva, representing the country in the tour, share the 11th position in the ranking and are fighting to join the team of 10 top surfers who will keep surfing in the major world’s division next year. Yet, in the WQS, the only Brazilian classified for next year, among the six who are rising to the world’s circuit access division, is Bruna Schmitz from Parana State, presently the 6th in the ranking. Rio de Janeiro, known by its natural beauties and by being the cradle of Brazilian surf, came back to international surf calendar stronger, hosting important championships of the world’s circuit. Surfing, beyond being one of the most practiced sports in Brazil, is today a lifestyle, worshiped by many who come from everywhere during the most important world competitions to cheer the best surfers in the planet.