Four Kaua’i surfing pros are heading to the World Surf League’s inaugural full-length Challenger Series.
The Challenger will be feature eight events around the world. It is the new steppingstone between the World Surf League’s Qualifying Series, and the Championship Tour.
Po’ipu’s Kainehe Hunt is the top-ranked qualifier in Challenger’s Hawai’i region. Brianna Cope is also a top-ranked qualifier.
Both Hunt and Cope are excited to begin the next phase in their surfing careers. The series starts on May 7 in Australia.
Hunt, a 20-year-old, is ranked No. 1 in Hawaii as he heads to his first men’s Challenger Series.
Cope is currently the women’s second-ranked surfer in the Challenger’s Hawai’i region.
Another surfer is getting ready for the Challenger on the North Shore of Kaua’i. Keala Tomoda Bannert, of Princeville, Keala is ranked No. 4 in Hawaii.
Big-wave surfer Keala Kennelly is the fourth surfer from Kaua’i in this year’s Challenger.
Events are also scheduled in Hawai’i, France, California, and Portugal.
The Challenger begins with the Boost Mobile Gold Coast Pro in Queensland and is followed by the GWM Sydney Surf Pro on Manly Beach.