Thursday 18th September (Manila, Philippines): Massive crowds lined the boardwalk of the SM Mall of Asia in Manila on the weekend to catch a glimpse of the action on offer at the Billabong “I Dream of Cloud 9” party, the kick off event for the 2nd annual international invitational surfing competition at the world famous Philippine break on Siargao Island.
The event was hosted by the leading distributor of boardsport apparel, equipment, and accessories in the Philippines, Stoked Inc, and attracted an obnoxiously large horde of xtreme sport starved locals. Last years Cloud 9 competition winner Wade Goodall (Sunshine Coast, Australia) was joined by big wave charger Laurie Towner (Angourie, Australia) and Indonesian surfing champion Lee Wilson (Bali, Indonesia) to meet the fans and press at one of the world’s biggest malls. The boys were merely onlookers though a week out from the main event and had a chance to sit back, relax, and take in all the wake and skate action.
Billabong International skater Jackson Pilz (Sunshine Coast, Australia) wowed the local crowds with some amazingly technical skating on the temporary skate street course. “You know Jackson is a true international talent and it was great to see him out there mixing it up with the locals” commented Billabong SE Asia Marketing Manager Peter Thew, “In saying that, we were both blown away by the standard of the local guys, they were pretty amazing” Thew added. The 16yr old skate superstar made the stopover in Manila before heading off to the USA for a stint of international competitions and practice, but not before handing out a couple of hundred signed Billabong posters.
In a first for Manila and rarely seen in SE Asia the good people at Stoked Inc constructed a ridiculous 60,000-gallon wake pool especially fabricated for the occasion that had the masses going crazy. “We wanted to herald the explosion of the boardsports culture in the Philippines in spectacular fashion,” exclaimed Mumph Ruiz, Marketing and PR Director for Stoked Inc. “The ‘I Dream of Cloud 9’ event brings the three boardsports of surf, wake, and skate together; these three sports inspire each other after all” Mumph added.
“We are just beginning to imagine how massive the potential for growth in surfing, wakeboarding, and skating is in this nation. It is mind-boggling.” declares Stoked Inc. founder and President JV Borromeo. “By working together with Billabong and organizing an event of this style and magnitude in the Mall of Asia (which sees as many as half a million visitors on any given weekend), we’ve come up with the ideal concept and venue with which to introduce ourselves to Filipinos and introduce them to this active and exciting lifestyle.” JV continues, “We’re coming in at just the right time. The boardsports community in the Philippines has reached a critical mass, so Stoked Inc. and Billabong can be a catalyst for this explosion. Events such as this is our way of giving back to the community, and supporting high-profile competitions such as Cloud 9 allows us to do our part in putting the country on the map. We’re honored and thrilled to be involved in all this.”
The Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational runs from the 20th to the 26th of September. You can check out all information on the event at www.Billabong.com. The Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational is proudly supported by the Provincial Government of Surigao Del Norte with Support from SM Mall of Asia, Stoked Inc, Smart Communications, San Miguel, The Department of Tourism Philippines, and environmental partner Green Zinc.
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