Billabong XXL 2008

New entries are flooding in from Europe, Hawaii and California, and with less than a month remaining in the annual cycle for the Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards presented by Monster Energy, few are doubting that a number of records are going to be shattered.  The last eleven months have proven among the most extraordinary in the history of big wave surfing, with an unprecedented 420+ entry images from all around the planet providing visual evidence of the mammoth surf on the event website at BillabongXXL.com.

New video clips and still photos continue to arrive week after week in all key categories of the event including the Billabong XXL Ride of the Year Award, Billabong XXL Biggest Wave Award powered by Honda, Monster Tube Award and Monster Paddle Award.  Also featured are the Surfline Best Overall Performance Award and the Billabong Girl's Performance Award.  In total, over $120,000 in prize money will be awarded in the eighth annual edition of big wave surfing's top event.  The competition is open to all qualified, invited surfers at any surf break around the world over the course of a full year and is based on the photographic evidence.

Although there is still plenty of time for more shocking swell events to occur before the event period concludes with the Vernal (Spring) Equinox on March 19, 2008 the world's big wave elite are already making plans to attend the gala Billabong XXL Awards ceremony this April 11 at the Grove Theater in Anaheim, California. 

While the 2000 seats at the Grove are invitation only, the entire evening's activities from Red Carpet arrivals to the final award will be broadcast during a live webcast at www.BillabongXXL.com and televised at a later date.

A truly global event, a number of European surfers have surged to new levels of XXL respect in recent months, with entries from France and Ireland offering their credentials as potential contenders.  The legendary Belharra Reef off southern France has reared its head once again, with an epic ride by Vincent Lartizen (Hossegor, France) reminding all of that break's leap onto the world stage in 2003.  Likewise, the British Isles have made their first real push to prominence with performances by Duncan Scott (Newquay, Cornwall, England) and Alistair Mennie (Portrush, Northern Ireland) at Mullaghmore Head in Donegal and beneath the imposing Cliffs of Moher in County Claire.

The Monster Paddle Award has likewise become intensely competitive with extremely fresh entries from Maverick's in Northern California and Waimea Bay on the North Shore of Oahu. Hawaii's Kalani Chapman and female phenom Maya Gaberia of Brazil both weighed in with some Valentine's Day bombs last Thursday at Waimea.  As the same swell made its way to the west coast the following day, it was 18-Year-old Nick Lamb (Santa Cruz) who scratched into the wave of the session at Mavericks. 

These new entries join some formidable company with amazing rides so far registered in such diverse locales as Chile, Tahiti, Western Australia, South Africa, Mexico, Tasmania and Spain. In addition to all the latest entries in each category, full event details including formats, rules and archives of past XXL years can be seen at the event website at www.BillabongXXL.com.

Source: Billabong XXL