Josh Burke is the first Barbadian to qualify for the US Open Of Surfing. (FP)
A Barbadian will be competing at one of the most prestigious and iconic events on the World Surf League Qualifying Series tour for the first time.
Josh Burke has qualified for the Vans US Open Of Surfing, which is held every summer at the famous Huntington Beach pier in California.
The 22-year-old will be in the 10 000 men’s Qualifying Series event of the main round of the largest action sports event in the United States and the biggest spectatorship event on the World Surf League tour.
An estimated one million fans are expected to flock to the Surf City during the event from July 27 to August 4, creating a frenzy of activity with an electrifying atmosphere.
“The past couple years I have been blessed with an invite into the trials, which is an honour in itself,” Burke said. “However, the goal has always been to qualify, so to check one more goal off my list feels great.”
Burke is fresh off an injury – a Grade 1 peroneal tendon tear that occurred while training on April 6. It resulted in four months of rehab and forced him to miss six events, causing him to drop from 39th to 134th on the World Surf League international rankings.
“During the rehabilitation period it was extremely tough not only physically, but mentally. Besides the fall in the rankings, just not being able to surf was painful,” he said.
“I am currently in California training and feeling very good. I am pleased to say I am back.” (PR/HG)