Billy Kemper wins the Peahi Challenge 2015

December 7, 2015 | Surfing
Billy Kemper: no fear at Jaws | Photo: Cestari/WSL

Billy Kemper has taken out the Peahi Challenge 2015, in Maui, Hawaii.

Jaws. Who doesn't fear it? The infamous peak located in Hookipa delivered 40-to-50 foot wave giants for the first event of the Big Wave Tour 2015. And what a spectacular day, with six experienced hellmen paddling into the final.

The rules of big wave surfing are simple: each surfer's top score is scored twice. In the decisive heat against Albee Layer, Greg Long, Ian Walsh, Gabriel Villaran and Shane Dorian, the local charger rode an 8.00-point wave, backed it up with a 6.77, and claimed the top honors.

"This is a dream come true. We've been talking about this moment for years and to have a paddle event in my backyard at, to me, one of the most premier, outstanding waves in the world, means everything to me," said Billy Kemper.

"I just want to dedicate this to my brother. To paddle Peahi has been a dream of mine for a very long time and to be out there with some of my favorite surfers and best friend - I'm just speechless."

There were dramatic wipeouts, too. But in the end, all went well. Albee Layer found a stunning barrel and finished runner-up. Greg Long believes he might have ridden the wave of his life, and got third.

There are three more events scheduled for the Big Wave Tour: Oregon Challenge (Nelscott Reef), Punta Galea Challenge (Spain) and Todos Santos Challenge, (Mexico). The season end on February 28th, 2016.

Peahi Challenge 2015 | Final

1. Billy Kemper (HAW) 22.77
2. Albee Layer (HAW) 19.33
3. Greg Long (USA) 16.26
4. Ian Walsh (HAW) 1.00
5. Gabriel Villaran (PER) 0.80
6. Shane Dorian (HAW) 0.00