Professional wave riders competing in next week’s WRV OBX Pro surf contest are keeping a close watch on a tropical low that’s brewing in Florida.

As it stands now, the contest continues through Sunday, Sept. 1 on the south beach of Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head.

Event Director L.G. Shaw of Virginia Beach said people should look for updates on www.wrvobxpro.com to see when the heats are running or to watch them live. There are extra days called “lay days” built in just in case there aren’t any waves.

In addition to the 96 men signed up, Shaw was happy to announce that 36 pro women surfers are also registered. The WRV OBX Pro serves as a qualifying event for the World Surf League for both men and women.

“The women will have one full day for their heats,” Shaw said. “With thirty-six women, that’s up some twenty percent from last year.”

He explained that the increase reflects the overall growth in the sport for women of all ages: “That’s what we’re seeing in the surf world, an increase at all age levels.”

As for the storm, Shaw said he would hate to see another storm event that does the type of damage Michael did last year but admits in general, tropical lows usually create surf.

“In theory, it could create challenging conditions, which are better than flat conditions,” he said. “It has the same lines as Matthew … that gave us great waves.”

In addition to phenomenal surfing, spectators can enjoy the WRV contest pop-up store, refreshments from sponsor Pacifico and a Catch Surf soft top jam on lay days, Shaw added.

Visitors can also sign up to test drive a Jeep or help clean up the beach on Saturday, Aug. 31, at 9 a.m. Additional vendors include CLIF Bar, Dragon, and Sanuk.

For more info, call WRV in Kitty Hawk at 252-261-7952.

Be there, aloha!

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