IMG Signs Hurley As Title Sponsor Of World’s Largest Surfing Festival—The US Open

U.S. Open of Surfing Returns to the Huntington Beach Pier, July 18 – 26, 2009

Bruce Irons US Open

Bruce Irons at the 2008 US Open Of Surfing. Photo: Straley

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. – IMG is pleased to announce that Hurley has signed on as title sponsor to the world’s largest professional surfing competition, the Hurley U.S. Open of Surfing.  Hosting 500 world-class athletes and drawing more than 400,000 spectators over 9 days, the massive event runs July 18 to 26 at the famed Huntington Beach Pier.  All of the action will be accessible live on www.usopenofsurfing.com.

With a rich history dating back to 1959, the Hurley U.S. Open of Surfing boasts one of a few North America’s six-star World Qualifying Series (WQS)-rated men’s and women’s events.  Offering the highest-possible allotment of qualifying points and overall cash prizes totaling $200,000, the prestigious competition is critical to American surfers aspiring to reach the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) elite World Tours.  In 2001 International Management Group (IMG) acquired the U.S. Open and positioned it as the anchor of a massive beach lifestyle festival featuring action sports contests and demonstrations, live music, fashion shows and an interactive festival spread over 14 acres.

“Hurley brings a fresh perspective to an already rich U.S. Open of Surfing heritage,” said James Leitz, Vice President of IMG Action Sports.  “With the 50th anniversary of competitive surfing in Huntington Beach as a backdrop, the 2009 Hurley U.S. Open of Surfing ushers in a new era for the event and its lifestyle components. Together, IMG and Hurley will take this authentic surfing event to new and exciting heights for the participants and the community.”

The Hurley U.S. Open of Surfing is the international benchmark for professional surfing, boasting records including attendance, media coverage and number of competitors.  The roster of champions reads like a “Who’s Who” with Rob Machado, Andy Irons, Kelly Slater, Cory Lopez, Layne Beachley, Lisa Andersen, Stephanie Gilmore and Sofia Mulanovich among other notable champions.

About Hurley

Founded in 1999, Hurley is an authentic “Microphone for Youth” brand rooted in surf, skate, art, music and beach cultures. www.hurley.com.

About IMG Sports & Entertainment

Operating in 30 countries, IMG Sports & Entertainment’s diverse businesses include: consulting services; event ownership and management; fashion events and models representation; licensing; golf course design; and client representation in golf, tennis, broadcasting, speakers, European football, rugby, cricket, motor sports, coaching, Olympic and action sports. IMG Academies are the world’s largest, multi-sport training and educational facilities, delivering world-class training experiences to more than 12,000 junior, collegiate, adult, and professional athletes each year.  More information is available at: www.imgworld.com