Welcome to Norway!
How fun that our country is hosting Eurosurf 2017.
What an achievement of the organizers, of all the volunteers and of the regional community of Jæren and Stavanger!
Eurosurf has a proud history even if surf is a relatively young sport. The first European Championship took place in Jersey in 1969. Norway participated for the first time in 1985.
There has been tremendous development in the sport since those days. Now that surf has been included for the next summer Olympics in Tokyo 2020 a new dimension is added to the European Championship.
We are welcoming 12 teams and almost 100 surfers with their support teams to Norway. We can offer cold water and surf in incredibly beautiful surroundings. In this particular part of our country, the sky and the sea meet in a fine line – on rough days invisible.
In my family, there has been both a tradition and a passion for competing in water sport through generations. My father and grandfather, both passionate sailors, have challanged the ways of the ocean before me.
Surfing has facinated me since I was a little kid. The simplicity of you and the board in the waves. And at the same time the complexity of the weather systems, of the oceans, the forces that line up, the timing of the take of. Even though I didn’t try wave surfing berfore I became a student and moved to California, I enjoy it very much.
For me this is not only a sport. It is my favorite way of being in nature, submerged in the elements. By the way, I think this is part of the reason why surfers are also environmentalist. Because when you are out there in the ocean it becomes clear that you are part of nature. Like the ocean and all living things in it. And when you see pollution and plastic out in the linup, the fragility of our great oceans become apparent. We need to fix that. We need to keep our oceans clean and healthy for our children and grandchilden. Tore Kramer has been clear on this point from the first time I talked to him about Eurosurf 2017. And it has been part of every step of the planning of this event.
And now the time has finally arrived. I am so proud to introduce you all to Norway, and to this particularly wonderful and surfer-friendly part of our country. I hope all of you travelling from abroad will enjoy your stay in Norway and have fun at Eurosurf 2017.
May the competition be great!
Thank you for your attention