Sebastian Steudtner: Germany strikes back | Photo: Billabong XXL/Bruno Aleixo

Andrew Cotton, Tom Butler, Kealii Mamala, Cliff and Will Skudin, António Silva, Rodrigo Koxa, and Sebastian Steudtner took part in the international fleet that challenged a death-defying big wave surfing game held at Praia do Norte, Nazaré, Portugal.

Nazaré fired huge bombs, as the North Atlantic super swell hit the shores of Southern Europe with such power it reminded the infamous Black Swell. It was time to set the engines on, and get big wave surfers in the Praia do Norte line-up.

Jet skis are mandatory. You need them to save lives and to tow riders into the fast-moving giants. Surfers became rescuers; rescuers became surfers. All with a common goal: to excel at their jobs.

"I've just surfed the biggest wave of my life," wrote Steudtner, the German charger. "This morning, I went the fastest I ever have on a surfboard riding down this lump of blue," added Butler.

Conditions touched perfection. The swell size and angle, the wind breeze, and the tide worked together to deliver yet another dramatic display of human achievement.

"It was one of the best moments of my life. It was one of the most special moments that I could ever live in the surf! I had never seen waves so big and so strong. I can't wait to surf another day like this," concluded Koxa.

"Nazare gets pretty dangerous. It's not like most big wave spots where it's organized or goes into a channel. It's like a beach break that's all over the place. So safety, communication are key. It's the only place I surf with a radio," concludes Andrew Cotton.