- 24 January 2014 | Surfing
Grant Baker has conquered the iconic Mavericks Invitational 2013/2014, at Half Moon Bay, California.
Two wave hold-downs, air drops, scary wipeouts, four judges in the water, inflatable wetsuits and a solid swell blasting Pillar Point for hours. Welcome to the Mavericks Invitational 2013/2014.
The world's wildest big wave surf contest had regular and goofy-footers descending the gnarly giants. Here, the best ride is doubled, and immediately on the first heats of the morning surfers were feeling the pressure. Nerves of steel. You got them, or you don't.
The South African big wave surfer pulled a 10-point ride to steal the Mavericks Invitational 2013/2014 final from the hands of Ryan Augenstein, Tyler Fox, Greg Long, and Anthony Tashnick.
"I feel amazing. There's no feeling like it. Two of my favorite surfers were in the final: Shane Dorian and Greg Long and to beat those guys in a final is an amazing feeling. To win Mavericks... I did it 2006 and eight year later I'm older, slower, but I still have a beat in me," says Grant Baker.
The surfers' quiver didn't lie. Pintails for speed, thick 9'-to-10' surfboards, thrusters and quad fin setups. Mavericks is not a laboratory. Keep test drives for summer beach breaks.
Judges were looking for commitment in the biggest waves, positioning in the most critical part of the drop, and completed rides.
There were 45-foot faces unloading on the bowl. Add a long swell period, freezing cold, grey skies, and you know exactly what to expect from Mavericks.
In Round 1, the top three surfers of each heat would advance into the semifinals. Danilo Couto scored the most dangerous free fall of the event while Peter Mel showed off with control and confidence.
"That was nice. I rode an old board from last year. I brought too many surfboards, I've got to be honest. I think the waves are in the right size," underlined Mel, right after finishing second in the inaugural round. Unfortunately for him, he wouldn't make the final.
While Grant "Twiggy" Baker earned the highest score of Round 1 with a 10-point ride, Tyler Fox secured the first ticket to the final after winning semifinal number one.
Despite an hideous, spectacular wipeout, Shawn Dollar couldn't keep third place. Dorian, Baker and Long completed the final roster.
Results of the Mavericks Invitational 2013/2014:
Grant Baker, 29.33
Shane Dorian, 25.53
Ryan Augenstein, 16.66
Tyler Fox, 12.66
Greg Long, 12.00
Anthony Tashnick, 0.00
Tyler Fox, 24.00
Anthony Tashnick, 22.59
Ryan Augenstein 22.50
Ken Collins, 17.83
Ryan Seelbach, 15,50
Peter Mel, 3.00
Shane Dorian, 27.17
Grant Baker, 26.07
Greg Long, 24.09
Shawn Dollar, 19.16
Zach Wormhoudt, 18.67
Kohl Christensen, 16.93