2008 Billabong XXLGlobal Big Wave Awards

8 Apr 2008 0 Share

Ben Andrews paddled into this vast wall at Maverick's in California, becoming a top entry in the Monster Paddle division.

Ben Andrews paddled into this vast wall at Maverick's in California, becoming a top entry in the Monster Paddle division.

(scroll down for video links)

Introduction
Scroll down and mind-surf all the finalists’ waves in the 2008 Billabong XXLGlobal Big Wave Awards.

I’m personally thinking I would have preferred to be a fraction deeper than Manoa Drollet at chopes and I still can’t work out why Snips didn’t delay his bottom turn a tad more at Cortes.

Of course such ridiculous false bravado on my behalf is being spat out sarcastically from the safety of my bedroom. These guys are of course world class watermen and deserve every bit of recognition they get. They’re freaks.

So just for fun hypothetically put yourself in the take off zone and if your reaction is anything like mine when I sussed the vid footage (I’m still curled up in fear) no doubt you will be questioning your manhood before the day is out. Incredible stuff. – BH.

Finalists

South Africa's Grant Baker is among 5 nominees for the Billabong XXL Biggest Wave Award with this ride off Cortes Bank off California.

South Africa's Grant Baker is among 5 nominees for the Billabong XXL Biggest Wave Award with this ride off Cortes Bank off California.

Vincent Lartizen (Hossegor, FR) descends a massive wall at Belharra Reef, France on January 4, 2008

Vincent Lartizen (Hossegor, FR) descends a massive wall at Belharra Reef, France on January 4, 2008

The finalists for the 2008 Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards presented by Monster Energy have been announced, marking the culmination of what is likely the greatest year in big wave surfing history. After 12 months of amazing conditions from Chile to South Africa to Europe to Tahiti to Hawaii to California to Mexico, over 500 entered images were narrowed down through the votes of the surfers and photographers themselves, producing this year's elite nominations. Video and still images of all the top rides are now available for viewing on the updated event website at www.billabongXXL.com

Ramon Navarro at his local break of Punta de Lobos, Chile

Ramon Navarro at his local break of Punta de Lobos, Chile

Mike Parsons rode this wave on January 5, 2008 at Cortes Bank, 105 miles off the California Coast.

Mike Parsons rode this wave on January 5, 2008 at Cortes Bank, 105 miles off the California Coast.

The winners will be announced on April 11, 2008 at the eighth-annual invitation-only awards gala at the Grove Theater in Anaheim, California before 2,000 surf world VIPs. The entire night's festivities will be webcast live on the event website and EXPN.com and will also be the focus of a one-hour television special airing on the ESPN2 network on the evening of May 29.

The top prize in this Oscars of surfing -- the Billabong XXL Ride of the Year Award -- carries a $50,000 prize for the surfer with the single most amazing performance on a big wave captured on video. This year three nominees were produced in a single day at Tahiti's legendary Teahupoo break via spectacular barrels ridden by local Manoa Drollet and Hawaiians Shane Dorian and Ian Walsh. Brazilian Carlos Burle was nominated for his tense moment in the curl at Ghost Tree off Pebble Beach, California while young Australian Michael Brennan was acknowledged for his airborne entry into a huge tube at Shipstern Bluff, Tasmania.

Manoa Drollet rode this wave on November 1, 2007, at his local break of Teahupoo, Tahiti, putting him in contention.

Manoa Drollet rode this wave on November 1, 2007, at his local break of Teahupoo, Tahiti, putting him in contention.

The Billabong XXL Biggest Wave Award will likely generate equally huge debate as to which was the tallest face of the year. The notorious Cortes Bank (105 miles off the California coast) lived up to its immense reputation and delivered a pair of storm-borne behemoths to South African Grant "Twiggy" Baker and 2001 XXL winner Mike Parsons of California. Europe is represented this year by a massive green face ridden by Frenchman Vincent Lartizen at Belharra Reef along the Basque coast, a break which leapt to global XXL prominence when first challenged in 2003. Also nominated were two waves on a dark day at the ominous Ghost Tree break, one by 2006 winner Brad Gerlach and the other by 2006 nominee Tyler Fox, both of California. One of them will receive $15,000, a Honda Aquatrax watercraft and a HSA rescue sled in honor of their accomplishment.

The Monster Paddle division is as competitive as ever. Although four of the five nominees come from a single epic day at Todos Santos Island, nine miles off the coast of Ensenada, Mexico, the riders hail from all corners of the planet. Up for consideration are Mark Healey of Hawaii, Greg Long of California, Jamie Mitchell of Australia and Rodrigo Resende of Brazil. Also in the mix is Ben Andrews of San Francisco, California for a treacherous late drop at Maverick's. $15,000 is at stake for the largest wave caught by arm-power alone.

Video links:

link: FIVE BILLABONG XXL RIDE OF THE YEAR AWARD NOMINEES (new Window)
link: FIVE BILLABONG XXL BIGGEST WAVE AWARD NOMINEES(new window)
link: FIVE MONSTER PADDLE AWARD NOMINEES (new window)

The nominees for 2008, in alphabetical order:

FIVE BILLABONG XXL RIDE OF THE YEAR AWARD NOMINEES
(Surfer prize $50,000 - Video prize $5,000)
Michael Brennan (Tasmania, Australia) at Shipstern Bluff, Tasmania on January 14, 2008.
(Video by Kendall O'Brien)
Carlos Burle (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) at Ghost Tree, California on December 4, 2007.
(Video by Greg Browning)
Shane Dorian (Kona, Hawaii, USA) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007.
(Video by Gustavo Camarao)
Manoa Drollet (Tahiti, French Polynesia) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007.
(Video by Gustavo Camarao)
Ian Walsh (Paia, Hawaii, USA) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007.
(Video by Gustavo Camarao)

FIVE BILLABONG XXL BIGGEST WAVE AWARD NOMINEES
( (Surfer prize $15,000 and a Honda Aquatrax watercraft with HSA sled - Photo/video prize $4,000)
Grant Baker (Durban, South Africa) at Cortes Bank off California on January 5, 2008.
(Photos by Robert Brown)
Tyler Fox (Santa Cruz, California, USA) at Ghost Tree, California on December 4, 2007.
(Photos by Mike Jones, Bart Keagy, Wayne Kelly & Dave Nelson. Video by Bruno Lemos & Graham Nash.)
Brad Gerlach (Los Angeles, California, USA) at Ghost Tree, California on December 4, 2007.
(Photos by Mike Jones, Wayne Kelly, Jason Murray & Sebastian Rojas. Video by Greg Browning)
Vincent Lartizen (Hossegor, France) at Belharra Reef, France on January 4, 2008.
(Photos by Greg Rabejac)
Mike Parsons (San Clemente, California, USA) at Cortes Bank off California on January 5, 2008.
(Photos by Robert Brown)

FIVE MONSTER PADDLE AWARD NOMINEES
( (Surfer prize $15,000 - Photo/video prize $4,000)
Ben Andrews (San Francisco, California, USA) at Maverick's, California on February 9, 2008.
(Photos by Jack English, Don Montgomery & Frank Quirarte. Video by Noel Robinson)
Mark Healey (Sunset Beach, Hawaii, USA) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007.
(Photos by A.J. Neste. Video by Alejandro Berger)
Greg Long (San Clemente, California, USA) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007
(Photos by Jeff Flindt, Edwin Morales & Jason Murray)
Jamie Mitchell (Gold Coast, Australia) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007.
(Photos by Jeff Flindt & Rich McMullin. Video by Alejandro Berger)
Rodrigo Resende (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007.
(Photo by A.J. Neste and Fred Pompermayer. Video by Alejandro Berger)

FIVE MONSTER TUBE PHOT

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