ISA President Fernando Aguerre said:
“This is my first time in El Salvador. I am super happy to be here and, well, I am a little distracted as I hear the sound of the waves behind me that are calling for me to go surf!
“I want to thank the president, Nayib Bukele, for his vision that surfing is more than a sport. It can be a part of government policies, a route for development of the country, and it can be a before and after for El Salvador. Surf isn’t simply a sport. It’s a culture. It’s a taking care of our oceans, these natural fields of play that nature has given us.
“I am proud to run this event here in a country with waves like this. Waves are the only thing that you cannot plan for during an event, but here it’s not a problem. The waves are coming.
“Tomorrow we are doing a beautiful Opening Ceremony that is going to inspire and show the world the culture of surf.”
Minister of Tourism Morena Valdez, said:
“Putting on this World Championship has truly been a work of the whole country. We want to show the world that El Salvador is a great destination for these type of events. We want to show our new ambassadors of the visiting delegations that this is one of the best countries for surfing, but also to visit, invest, and to live in.
“This is the dream that we are chasing, and look at us now. We are putting on the most important surfing event in history. Salvadoreans should feel proud that we are showing the world what we are capable of.”
President of INDES Yamil Bukele said:
“The moment we have been waiting for has finally arrived. El Salvador has fulfilled its goal of hosting this event, which will qualify the final 12 Olympic surfers, in the best possible way. We hope that our Salvadorean athletes compete well and earn more than one of those Olympic slots. I want to welcome all the athletes from around the world and wish them the best of luck.”
The two Olympic hopefuls on the panel, El Salvador’s Bryan Perez and Peru’s Sofia Mulanovich, also shared their thoughts ahead of the competition.
Perez stressed that he is “super focused and training hard” for the chance to qualify, “anxious to enjoy the event” with his teammates and friends from around the world.
Mulanovich similarly expressed her excitement to be in a “spectacular” country like El Salvador, eager to do her “best surfing” for her country of Peru.”
The 2021 Surf City El Salvador ISA World Surfing Games runs from May 29 – June 6. Follow the event with live broadcasts, news, videos, photos, schedules, results, and more on www.isasurf.org.