"We are custodians of a tradition of surfing and a heritage event in the city of Huntington Beach and appreciate the opportunity to keep it alive and well."
The $350,000 U.S. Open includes a $250,000 Men's Prime division that awards a $100,000 first-place prize and 6,500 points to the winner. Simpson will compete in a Men's Prime division that includes, among others, Huntington Beach athletes Tim Reyes, Brad Ettinger, Shaun Ward and Jason Harris, Rob Machado (Cardiff), three-time world champion Andy Irons (Hawaii), Mick Fanning (Australia), Taj Burrow (Australia), C.J. Hobgood (Florida), Dane Reynolds (Ventura), Patrick Gudauskas (San Clemente) and Jordy Smith (South Africa), who is ranked No. 1 in the world.
Smith won the Billabong Pro Men's title in South Africa last week.
Machado (2006, 2001, 1995), Irons (2006, 1998), Hobgood (2007) and Burrows (2004) have all won the U.S. Open Men's title.
The $60,000 Women's six-star division has a $20,000 first-place prize — a record high — and 12 of the top 16 women on the ASP World Tour are entered in the competition. Conlogue will go up against the likes of world champions Stephanie Gilmore (Australia) and Sofia Mulanovich (Peru), Jessi Miley-Dyer (Australia), Jacqueline Silva (Brazil), ratings leader Sally Fitzgibbons (Australia), Coco Ho (Hawaii), Sage Erickson (Hawaii) and Karina Petroni (Florida).
Gilmore (2007) and Mulanovich (2006) are previous winners of the U.S. Open Women's title.
Leitz said with the Women's prize purse raised to $60,000, and with $20,000 going to the winner, the U.S. Open Women's Pro purse is "one of, if not the" highest first-place prizes in women's surfing.
The U.S. Open Women's Pro and the $10,000 U.S. Open Women's Junior Pro (ASP grade-four event) finals are Aug. 7. The U.S. Open Men's Pro and $10,000 U.S. Open U.S. Open Men's Junior Pro (ASP grade-two event) finals are Aug. 8.
The U.S. Open of Surfing is open and free to the public.