As part of its multi-year global deal, the Jeep brand is the exclusive automotive partner of the World Surf League’s upcoming Founders’ Cup of Surfing event, presented by Michelob ULTRA PURE Gold, a historic nation-versus-nation teams event featuring a cross-section of the world’s best surfers, to be held at WSL Surf Ranch in Lemoore, California, May 5-6, 2018.
The WSL Surf Ranch facility boasts the best man-made wave in history – a 640m high-performance, bi-directional wave featuring barrel sections and maneuver sections. Primarily existing as a testing facility, the Lemoore site has spent the past two years dialing in the technology under the guidance of 11-time WSL Champion Kelly Slater (USA) and feedback from visiting WSL surfers. The technology has captured the imagination of the global surfing community. The Founders’ Cup will be the WSL’s first public event at the facility – showcasing the wave and the world’s best surfers through a unique team format.
“Surf and Jeep brand fans share an extreme enthusiasm that drive them to seek their next adventure,” said Mike Manley, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA. “The Founders’ Cup and the Surf Ranch are borne from the passion of an entire community that dreamed its existence. These are the same dreamers and doers that fuel our Jeep brand culture. We not only share the same sensibilities as the World Surf League, we also provide the global reach that is both uniquely compatible and necessary to extend across their worldwide surf events.”
The Jeep brand will have an on-site activation at the event, including the recently announced “Jeep Sessions: A Surfing Journey in 360° virtual reality experience, where fans can take a virtual reality adventure with Jeep Ambassadors Jordy Smith and Malia Manuel. In addition, five “Crazy Passionate” videos embodying the shared DNA between the Jeep brand and the spirit and soul of surfing/surf lifestyle will run across the Jeep brand’s social and digital channels.
Additional elements of the Founders’ Cup partnership include:
- “Jeep Best Ride” – Athletes will be scored on each run, and the leading run over the course of the contest will hold the title of “Jeep Best Ride.” Broadcast viewers will see a special icon next to the name of the current “Jeep Best Ride” leader whenever he or she is in the water, and when the competition concludes, the athlete with the highest score overall will take home an all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler.
- Jeep Athlete Signings on May 5 (with @JordySmith) and on May 6 (with @TylerWright)
- All-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler and new 2019 Jeep Cherokee on site
- Jeep brand vehicles to be assigned VIP transport
Five teams – USA, Brazil, Australia, Europe and World – made up of three men and two women surfers from the elite WSL Championship Tour, will compete over the two-day event. The competition will be hosted against a festival backdrop honoring the culture of surfing – food, music, beverage, art and special guests will all be on site for enjoyment. Tickets for the event are available at WSLFoundersCup.com.
As the WSL’s exclusive automotive partner, the Jeep brand continues its sponsorship of surfing’s most sought-after properties – the Jeep Leaderboard and the iconic yellow Jeep Leader Jersey.
Jeep brand was recently recognized as a 2018 “Cult Brand” Honoree at the annual The Gathering (Society of Cult Brands). Jeep brand is the first and only automotive brand recognized by the association. Eight brands, and their leaders, were honored for their outstanding courage and unconventional thinking in achieving enviable brand engagement and reaping the benefits of cult-like status.