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|Irons, hiding from the Rebel Tour.|
The website for Australia's Daily Telegraph is reporting that Taj Burrow and Andy Irons are considering legal action against the so-called "Rebel Tour" that's been the cause for much speculation since rumors of it surfaced last summer. The tour, which is being developed by Kelly Slater's manager, Terry Hardy, and former boxing promoter Matt Tinely, purports to address on-going concerns of many World Tour surfers, including things like media coverage, event formats, and prize money. When the ASP announced changes this past October that seemed designed in direct response to many of those concerns, buzz over the tour all but ceased.
If the Daily Telegraph's report is correct, it appears that rumors of the Rebel Tour's death might have been greatly exaggerated. It claims Irons, Burrow, Dane Reynolds, and Jordy Smith are all "furious" at being linked to the tour and quotes ASP World Tour Manager Renato Hickel saying: "A few of the managers are threatening legal action of it doesn't stop." What the piece does not explain is the manner in which the Rebel Tour has used the surfers' names, or how such use would be legally actionable.
During August and September, when rumors of the tour were at their pitch, it was not uncommon to hear the names of Irons, Reynolds, and Smith tossed around by gossiping members of the surf industry. But as the Rebel Tour never officially went public with any information, there was no way to know if there was any truth to the gossip. Hickel's comments seem to suggest something was brewing at some point, but what that something was remains unclear.
More importantly, as we enter the dog days for ASP World Tour news, it appears the big story of 2009 might have a little leg left to show surf newshounds in 2010...(Link via Boardistan)