Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau: there is only one winner, ok?

The names of the surfers that will ride the 2011/2012 Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau have been announced. The big wave surfing contest will be run at Waimea Bay, Oahu, between December 1, 2011 through February 29, 2012.

It takes a special brew of energy from Mother Nature to even rouse athletes for The Eddie, and the heavier the storm, the greater the likelihood of a green light.

Waimea Bay is a tough target to hit: the depth of the ocean floor, the narrow window of angulation that requires precisely the right swell direction and the ultimate timing of the swell's arrival – it needs to peak during the day.

On top of that, these conditions only come about during the Hawaiian winter. One degree this side or the other of the perfect storm, and it's big wave riding's equivalent of a washout: too mellow.

To be in the giant category, wind speeds drumming upon the ocean must reach 50-60 knots and be that way for at least two thirds of the life of the storm. For Waimea to fire, swell must push from a NW direction and through a narrow window of roughly 315-325 degrees. The storm system itself can't come too close to the Islands or wave quality will be adversely affected.

INVITEES:

Brock Little - HAW
Bruce Irons - HAW
Clyde Aikau - HAW
Dave Wassel - HAW
Greg Long - USA
Jamie O'Brien – HAW
Jamie Sterling – HAW
Kala Alexander – HAW
Kelly Slater – USA
Keone Downing – HAW
Kohl Christensen – HAW
Makua Rothman – HAW
Mark Healey – HAW
Michael Ho – HAW
Nathan Fletcher – USA
Noah Johnson – HAW
Peter Mel – USA
Ramon Navarro – CHL
Reef McIntosh – HAW
Ross Clarke – Jones – AUS
Rusty Keaulana – HAW
Shane Dorian – HAW
Sunny Garcia – HAW
Tom Carroll – HAW

INT'L INVITEES:

Carlos Burle - BRZ
Grant Baker - ZAF
Jeremy Flores - EUR
Takayuki Wakita - JPN

ALTERNATES:

Kalani Chapman - HAW
Garrett McNamara - HAW
Ian Walsh - HAW
Kahea Hart - HAW
Alex Gray - USA
Chris Bertish - ZAF
Mark Mathews - AUS
Shawn Dollar - USA
John John Florence - HAW
Danilo Couto - BRZ
Jamie Mitchell - AUS
Evan Valiere - HAW
Gabriel Villaran - PER
Danny Fuller - HAW
Keoni Watson - HAW
Ben Wilkinson - AUS
Diego Medina - CHL
RUsty Long - USA
Derek Dunfee - USA
Anthony Tashnick - USA
Ken Collins - USA
Kealii Mamala - HAW
Ross Williams - HAW
TAv Hannemann - HAW