Kai Lenny: a Peahi Challenge wildcard | Photo: Red Bull

The Peahi Challenge 2015 will get underway on the 22nd January, in Maui, Hawaii. It's the second event of the Northern Hemisphere season and the third of the 2014/2015 season.

The Big Wave Tour (BWT) has raised the green flag. The Peahi Challenge is expecting giant waves as a projected 30-to-40-foot swell prepares to hit the Hawaiian island.

"We've greenlit the Peahi Challenge for an 8am start on Thursday. The call is to go, but we'll ultimately assess conditions on Thursday morning to ensure they're up to standard for the world's best big wave surfers," explains Peter Mel, the BWT Commissioner.

"We've seen Makua Rothman victorious in Pico Alto and then finish runner-up to Nic Lamb in Punta Galea, so the Hawaiian is firmly in the driver's seat in this season's title hunt. Peahi is a serious wave and we're excited to see this historic event come to life on Thursday.”

Peahi, also known as "Jaws", breaks off the northern coastline of Maui with the ability to produce waves in excess of 60 feet. The big wave surf break came to fame under the guise of tow-in, but in the last year a dedicated crew of surfers have been pushing the boundaries by paddling into the pit.

The Peahi Challenge in Maui, together with the Todos Santos Challenge in Mexico, and the Punta Galea Challenge in the Basque Country comprise the Northern Hemisphere half of the season.

The 24-man field for the Peahi Challenge will be comprised of the BWT Top 12, led by reigning world champion Grant "Twiggy" Baker, as well as six BWT wildcards and six local wildcards.

Update: A significant downgrade in swell projection has forced event organizers to put the brakes on the event for now.

Top 12 WSL BWT Surfers

1 - Grant Baker (ZAF)
2 - Ken Collins (USA)
3 - Nic Lamb (USA)
4 - Shawn Dollar (USA)
5 - Kohl Christensen (HAW)
6 - Alex Gray (USA)*
7 - Greg Long (USA)
8 - Ryan Augenstein (USA)
9 - Anthony Tashnick (USA)
10 - Ramon Navarro (CHL)
11 - Jamie Mitchell (AUS)
12 - Tyler Fox (USA)

*Adur Letamendia (EUK) will be filling in for Alex Gray who has withdrawn due to injury.

WSL BWT Wildcards

1 - Kelly Slater (USA)
2 - Mark Healey (HAW)
3 - Shane Dorian (HAW)
4 - Dave Wassel (HAW)
5 - Makua Rothman (HAW)
5 - Gabriel Villaran (PER)

Pe'ahi Local Wildcards:

1 - Ian Walsh (HAW)
2 - Billy Kemper (HAW)
3 - Albee Layer (HAW)
4 - Shawn Walsh (HAW)
5 - Kai Lenny (HAW)
6 - Tyler Larronde (HAW)