2023 WSL Championship Tour Competitors Confirmed and Ready for Season Start in January
CT welcomes six rookies to 2023 season, Challenger Series qualifiers from Indonesia, Morocco, Italy, France, Hawaii, Brazil, USA, and Australia, plus the 2023 CT season starts at Billabong Pipe Pro beginning January 29.
Thursday, December 8, 2022
LOS ANGELES, Calif., USA (Thursday, December 8, 2022) – The World Surf League (WSL) Tours and Competition team confirmed the official competitor lists for the 2023 Championship Tour (CT) season. The 2023 WSL CT will feature the world’s best surfers, as determined by the top-ranking finishers on the 2022 CT and 2022 Challenger Series, as well as the season and event wildcards selected by the WSL Tours and Competition team.
Rankings Update: This Is Who Qualified For The Championship Tour
Kaipo, Rosy and Ross break down who the fresh and familiar faces on the 2023 Championship Tour.
Starting on January 29, 2023, the new CT class will compete in the fully redesigned CT framework for the second year. Men and women will compete in the same CT venues, with an equal number of competitions and equal prize money. The CT format will kick off the season at the Billabong Pro Pipeline, will see the Mid-season Cut at the season’s halfway point, and will conclude at the Rip Curl WSL Finals, where the WSL Final 5 men and women will battle for the World Title.
“We’re excited to welcome and officially confirm the new class of Championship Tour competitors,” said Jessi Miley-Dyer, WSL SVP of Tours and Head of Competition. “We’re coming off of a groundbreaking season with the first-ever combined schedule for the men and women and the continuation of equal prize money, and we will continue to make history in 2023 and beyond.
“We have so much to celebrate as the 2022 season comes to a close, and we look forward to next season. We’ll have world-class athletes take center stage representing new countries on the CT, with Ramzi Boukhiam representing Morocco and Rio Waida representing Indonesia. Our surfers are role models, paving the way for the next generation and showing the world what’s possible.”
Ramzi Boukhiam Makes It Official, Becomes The First Moroccan To Qualify For The Championship Tour
WSL Tours and Competitions confirmed that Ramzi Boukhiam will be Morocco’s first-ever CT competitor in 2023. The long-time qualification threat made his dream a reality with big performances throughout the 2022 Challenger Series season.
The men’s 2023 Championship Tour will be contested by the WSL Top 36, made up of:
The Top 22 finishers from the 2022 CT rankings
The Top 10 finishers on the 2022 Challenger Series rankings
Two WSL season wildcards
Two event wildcards
The women’s 2023 Championship Tour will be contested by the WSL Top 18, made up of:
The Top 10 finishers on the 2022 CT rankings
The Top five finishers on the 2022 Challenger Series rankings
Two WSL season wildcards
One event wildcard
The 2023 CT season will start with 36 men and 18 women. Halfway through the season, the field will be reduced to 24 men and 12 women. The top-ranked surfers will automatically requalify for the 2024 CT, as well as continue on to the second half of the Tour, where they will be joined by one season-long wildcard and one event wildcard (two men’s wildcards and two women’s wildcards).
In addition to the WSL wildcards announced for the season, the WSL Tours and Competition team also assigned one WSL Replacement for men’s competitions and one WSL Replacement for women’s competitions. The WSL Replacement surfer will surf amongst the world’s best when a CT surfer withdraws from the competition.
The WSL Replacement spot will only be available at the first five stops of the season before the Mid-season Cut. The 2023 WSL Replacements are Teresa Bonvalot (PRT) and Carlos Munoz (CRI).
Sophie McCulloch Qualifies For The 2023 Championship Tour By Winning The Haleiwa Challenger
Sophie McCulloch proved anything is possible, coming from deep in the rankings to qualify for the Championship Tour by winning the Haleiwa Challenger.
Women’s 2023 Championship Tour Qualifiers
Top 10 Qualifiers from 2022 CT Rankings
Stephanie Gilmore (AUS)
Carissa Moore (HAW)
Johanne Defay (FRA)
Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA)
Brisa Hennessey (CRI)
Lakey Peterson (USA)
Courtney Conlogue (USA)
Tyler Wright (AUS)
Gabriela Bryan (HAW)
Isabella Nichols (AUS)
Top 5 Qualifiers from 2022 Challenger Series Rankings
Bettylou Sakura Johnson (HAW)
Macy Callaghan (AUS)
Molly Picklum (AUS)
Caitlin Simmers (USA)
Sophie McCulloch (AUS)
WSL Season Wildcards
Caroline Marks (USA)
Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS)
Teresa Bonvalot (PRT)
Men’s 2023 Championship Tour Qualifiers
Top 22 Qualifiers from the 2022 CT Rankings
Filipe Toledo (BRA)
Italo Ferreira (BRA)
Jack Robinson (AUS)
Ethan Ewing (AUS)
Kanoa Igarashi (JPN)
Miguel Pupo (BRA)
Griffin Colapinto (USA)
Caio Ibelli (BRA)
Connor O’Leary (AUS)
Callum Robson (AUS)
Samuel Pupo (BRA)
John John Florence (HAW)
Matthew McGillivray (ZAF)
Jordy Smith (ZAF)
Kelly Slater (USA)
Barron Mamiya (HAW)
Nat Young (USA)
Jake Marshall (USA)
Kolohe Andino (USA)
Jadson Andre (BRA)
Seth Moniz (HAW)
Jackson Baker (AUS)
Top 10 Qualifiers from the 2022 Challenger Series Rankings
Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA)
Ryan Callinan (AUS)
Rio Waida (IND)
Maxime Huscenot (FRA)
Ramzi Boukhiam (MAR)
Michael Rodrigues (BRA)
Ian Gentil (HAW)
Joao Chianca (BRA)
Liam O’Brien (AUS)
Ezekiel Lau (HAW)
WSL Season Wildcards
Gabriel Medina (BRA)
Yago Dora (BRA)
Carlos Munoz (CRI)
Carissa Moore finished just shy of a sixth World Title in 2022 and returns to Pipeline looking to earn a big win after her runner-up at the Billabong Pro Pipeline. – WSL / BRENT BIELMANN
Billabong Pro Pipeline To Kickoff 2023 CT Season
The first stop on the 2023 WSL Championship Tour will be the Billabong Pro Pipeline, starting January 29 and running through February 10, 2022. The women made history last season after competing in the first full competition at Pipeline and will continue paving the way in January to kick off the 2023 CT season.
“The WSL held the first-ever women’s competition at Pipe in 2020 and hosted the first full CT competition there earlier this year, and now we cannot wait to see this group kick off the CT season at the world-renowned venue again in January for the Billabong Pro Pipeline,” said Miley-Dyer.
All the action will be broadcast LIVE on WorldSurfLeague.com, the WSL’s YouTube channel, and the free WSL app. Also, check local listings for coverage from the WSL’s broadcast partners.
For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.