The World Surf League (WSL) tours and competition has team announced Culburra Beach's Owen Wright is one of four athletes awarded wildcard spots for the 2022 Championship Tour.
Tokyo bronze medalist Wright, United States duo Lakey Peterson and Kolohe Andino and Hawaii's Malia Manuel will join the qualifiers from the 2021 Championship Tour, as well as the current surfers competing on the 2021 Challenger Series - which has two events, the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro France and the Haleiwa Challenger, remaining.
"We're excited to welcome these surfers back on the Championship Tour as the 2022 season Wildcards," SVP of tours and head of competition Jessi Miley-Dyer said.
"Lakey and Kolohe sustained injuries early in the season, with both athletes missing a total of five events in the last season.
"Malia and Owen both had good results in 2021 and were very close to re-qualifying for 2022 at the end of the season.
"All four surfers had proven performances over the recent years and earned a spot among the world's best."
The men's 2022 Championship Tour will be contested by the WSL's top 36, made up of the top 20 finishers on the 2021 CT rankings, the top 12 finishers on the 2021 Challenger Series, the two WSL season wildcards and two event wildcards.
The women's 2022 Championship Tour, featuring Culburra Beach's Tyler Wright and Gerroa's Sally Fitzgibbons, will be contested by the WSL's top 18 made up of the top nine finishers on the 2021 CT rankings, the top six finishers on the 2021 Challenger Series, the two WSL season wildcards and one event wildcard
With new venues and a revamped Tour structure, the 2022 CT season will start with 36 men and 18 women.
Halfway through the season, the field will be reduced to 22 men and 10 women.
The top-ranked surfers will continue on to the second half of the tour, where they will be joined by two men's and two women's wildcards (one season wildcard and one event wildcard) and automatically re-qualify for the 2023 CT.
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