Pipeline Masters: it's all about the barrel | Photo: Cestari/WSL

The 2016 Billabong Pipeline Masters in Memory of Andy Irons is ready to ignite the North Shore of Oahu, in Hawaii, from December 8th-20.

It's easy to understand why a long surfing season always ends in Pipeline. The last gem of the Triple Crown of Surfing truly is a gift of nature.

Although pretty much predictable, Pipeline is not a forgiving wave. And no matter how many times you surf it, there will always be new, uncharted territory to explore.

This time, Pipeline will not crown a new world champion. But there's a lot at stake. Will Frederico Morais win the most prestigious surfing series, and raise the Portuguese flag for the first time in Hawaii?

Can John John Florence win the Billabong Pipe Masters, and celebrate a stellar year with his local fans? Will Championship Tour surfers open new doors for Qualifying Series campaigners?

What's in Kelly Slater's mind? Is he planning an assault on the North Shore to capture his eighth Pipe Masters title? And Gabriel Medina, what's his strategy for this year's game?

The magical beach of Banzai Pipeline is ready to deliver one of the most exciting surfing showdowns on planet Earth.

Watch how the reef at Pipeline looks like and learn more about the origin of the name "Pipeline."

2016 Billabong Pipe Masters | Round 1 Match-Ups

Julian Wilson (AUS), Wiggolly Dantas (BRA), Ryan Callinan (AUS)
Kolohe Andino (USA), Miguel Pupo (BRA), Bede Durbidge (AUS)
Matt Wilkinson (AUS), Nat Young (USA), Frederico Morais (PRT)
Jordy Smith (ZAF), Keanu Asing (HAW), Finn McGill (HAW)
Gabriel Medina (BRA), Kanoa Igarashi (USA), Bruce Irons (HAW)
John John Florence (HAW), Jadson Andre (BRA), Gavin Beschen (HAW)
Adriano de Souza (BRA), Conner Coffin (USA), Alex Ribeiro (BRA)
Joel Parkinson (AUS), Stuart Kennedy (AUS), Jeremy Flores (FRA)
Filipe Toledo (BRA), Josh Kerr (AUS), Adam Melling (AUS)
Kelly Slater (USA), Caio Ibelli (BRA), Kai Otton (AUS)
Sebastian Zietz (HAW), Italo Ferreira (BRA), Jack Freestone (AUS)
Adrian Buchan (AUS), Michel Bourez (PYF), Davey Cathels (AUS)