The Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) is proud to announce the winners of the seventh annual SIMA Image Awards, the only awards program that gives the surf industry the opportunity to recognize fellow surf industry companies for their outstanding contributions to the industry.

The goal of the SIMA Image Awards is to identify the surf industry’s most influential companies and recognize them for their efforts to advance and grow the industry over the past year.

Winners were honored in 15 categories in a ceremony on October 2 at SIMA Surf Summit 12 in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.



Breakthrough Brand of the Year: * winner – Atwater
Criteria: Recognizing the small- to mid-size men’s or women’s brand that experienced breakthrough growth between January 1 and December 31, 2008. Consider surfboard, apparel, footwear, wetsuit and accessory brands that had a breakthrough year through product development and/or increased brand recognition and appeal. Nominated companies can be new or established brands, but must have annual U.S. sales of at least $1 million and no more than $25 million.


Tiago Pires

The Billabong Pro Mundaka, Event No. 8 of 10 on the 2009 ASP World Tour, completed the opening eight heats of Round 1 today in clean three-to-four foot (1 metre) waves at the primary venue.

Opting to run the man-on-man elimination Round 1 format, the Billabong Pro Mundaka played witness to some incredible drama today, with surfers fighting for both requalification and solid footing on the ASP World Tour ratings.

Kekoa Bacalso (HAW), 24, former ASP World Junior Champion (2005) and 2009 ASP Dream Tour rookie, was the standout on Day 1 of competition, netting the high heat total of a 15.80 out of a possible 20 for a barrage of backhand turns, eliminating wildcard Hodei Collazo (EUK).

“Hodei (Collazo) is really dangerous,” Bacalso said. “I know the mindset of the wildcard, and when I used to be one, all I wanted to do was shatter dreams. This is his home spot and to be honest, I was really scared going into this heat. Hodei got the one at the start, then I got one, then I had to wait until the end to pick up my second score. Stoked I did though and avoided the go-home elimination Round 1.”

Currently ranked No. 19 on the ASP World Tour ratings, Bacalso currently leads the charge in the hunt for 2009 ASP World Tour Rookie of the Year, and will look to consolidate in the remaining three events this season.


Earth Wave South Africa

More than 100 surfers rode a wave at the Earthwave beach festival in Muizenberg, Cape Town on Sunday to break the Guinness World Record for the ‘most surfers riding the same wave’.

“We estimated that there were more than 120 surfers on the fifth of the seven waves surfed at Muizenberg during Earthwave,’ said Paul Botha of Kahuna Promotions, the founders of the event that leverages the publicity generated by the world record attempt to promote awareness of climate change and sustainable lifestyles.

“However, the photographic evidence we have so far shows that there were 103 on the same wave, which is enough to overtake the record of 100 set by Earthwave Brazil in Santos last year,” Botha added. “We are still waiting for more images and video footage that we will submit to the Guinness World Record organisation in London to have the record ratified.”

In ideal sunshine conditions, a light offshore breeze and small 0.5 to one metre waves, a total of 443 surfers of all ages and abilities registered to try and bring the record back to Cape Town after Brazil had exceeded the 73 on one wave set at Muizenberg in 2006.

Five times the number in the water lined the beachfront cheering every attempt and urging their champions on as they rode the waves for five seconds before being counted, taking part in a host of fun-filled activities and fund-raising initiatives.