VANCOUVER - Organizers of this weekend's female-only Queen of the Peak surfing contest on Vancouver Island say talks are underway with the sport's world governing body to create a separate professional event that could boast a prize purse worth tens of thousands of dollars.
The Queen of the Peak is in its fourth year now and is expected to draw about 100 amateur competitors to the beaches of Tofino, B.C., with the hopes of winning a top prize of $1,500 and a surfboard.
But Brian Robbins of the Association of Surfing Professionals says he's been contacted by organizers in Tofino to discuss the potential of setting up a separate professional competition just for women.
He says the association already likes Tofino as a location but needs to determine what time of year would work best for a women's competition and find out how the event would fit in with other regional events on the West Coast of North America.
Mike Jacobsen, who is the co-organizer of the Queen of the Peak contest, says those who want to create a professional event will also have to raise a couple hundred thousand dollars in sponsorships to take care of expenses like prizes and judges' fees.
Krissy Montgomery, also a co-organizer of the Queen of the Peak, says proponents of a pro event will soon have to sit down for a serious meeting and discuss logistics and next steps, but such a contest could realistically take place in the next few years.