Surf Canada is among 55 nations and 240 athletes that have gathered in Miyazaki, Japan to celebrate the 2019 ISA World Surfing Games and compete for placements for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

This month is a historic edition of the International Surf Assocation’s World Surfing Games because it will be the first to directly qualify athletes for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. And team Surf Canada is there to represent.

The men’s side of Surf Canada’s team consists of Peter Devries, Cody Young and Shane Campbell, while the women’s trio is made up of Mathea Olin, Bethany Zelasko and Paige Alms.

Above: Opening ceremony at the 2019 ISA World Surfing Games in Japan. Top: Surf Canada member Bethany Zelasko. Photos by Ben Reed

Canada is up against 55 other participating nations at the event and team member Shane Campbell, who has competed on the WSL Qualifying Series (Pro Circuit) for the past five years and has four finals and two wins to his credit, says “I didn’t know what to expect as this doesn’t happen on the Pro Tour, and being a part of this Olympic-like celebration amongst these exceptional athletes, all with the same dream to compete at Tokyo 2020, has got me even more fired up to take my surfing to that necessary level.”

“As the first edition of the World Surfing Games to qualify athletes for the Olympics, this is an incredible, historic time for the sport,” says ISA President Fernando Aguerre. “Twenty-four years ago Olympic Surfing was a crazy dream. But everything starts with a crazy, impossible idea to make a dream become a reality. We’ve now brought surfing to the greatest sporting stage, the Olympic Games. Miyazaki is a tropical surfing paradise and I would like to thank the governor and the people of Miyazaki for once again receiving us with open arms.”

USA’s Caroline Marks, an ISA Junior Gold Medalist, shared her thoughts on returning to the ISA format: “Surfing is such an individual sport, so to compete as a team and feel all the support is incredible,” said Marks. “I am looking forward to competing against so many people and countries that I don’t usually surf against.”

The schedule for the competition is as follows:

September 8/9
Open Women

September 10
Aloha Cup (TBC)
Open Women
Start to Open Men

September 11
Finals Open Women
Open Men competition continues

September 15
Finals Open Men
Closing Ceremony

To see live coverage of the event as well as rankings, visit