Jaws: one surfer is in serious trouble

Jaws, Mavericks, Todos Santos, Mullaghmore Head, Prowlers, Teahupoo, Belharra, Waimea, Cortes Bank and Puerto Escondido. What do these big wave surf spots have in common?

The answer is simple and thrilling. These waves have been surfed recently and will be featured and voted in the Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards 2011. There are absolutely incredible examples of the greatness of big wave surfing and its riders.

The judges are about to decide the "Ride of the Year", the "Biggest Wave", the "Monster Paddle", the "Monster Tube" and the "Wipeout of the Year". Surfers, photographers, surf magazine editors and writers will unveil the grand winner at the awards ceremony, to be held on April 29, at the Grove Theater, in Anaheim, California.

Some of the best waves captured by the eyes of photographer and videographer are already pumping fans' adrenaline. Check out the most amazing rides and a few of the 2011 event highlights, here.

Benjamin Sanchis, Eric Rebiere, Axi Muniain, Mike Brennan, James Hollmer-Cross, Shaun Wallbank, Dave Scard, Shaun Lopez, Laurie Towner, Kohl Christensen, Mark Healey, Greg Long, Rodrigo Koxa, Al Mennie and Jeremy Johnson have scored outstanding big wave surf waves and are ready to battle for the prize money awards.

The Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards acknowledge the achievements of the world's finest surfers in the biggest waves, anywhere in the world.

For a ride to be deemed successful, the surfer must complete the meaningful portion of the wave while in control and under the power of only the wave and gravity. The wave height to be measured will be the distance from the lip to the trough of the wave at its highest moment during the ride as measured above and below the surfer.