Tomorrow, We'll Be Watching 18 Surfers Try To Get Barreled And Do Turns At 50-Foot Nazare - Stab Mag
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Normal human behavior with Kai Lenny. Photo: Mathais Hammar/Red Bull Content Pool

Tomorrow, We’ll Be Watching 18 Surfers Try To Get Barreled And Do Turns At 50-Foot Nazare

On a live stream courtesy of Red Bull, of course.

news // Feb 9, 2022
Words by Ethan Davis
Reading Time: 3 minutes

The WSL Nazaré Tow Surfing Challenge will run this Thursday, February 10.

The forecast? Early indications suggest ideal winds and clean conditions, with waves ranging from 40-55 feet. The list of attendees includes: Lucas ‘Chumbo’ Chianca, Nic Von Rupp, Justine Dupont, Jamie Mitchell, Maya Gabriella, and more, which means you can expect to see the world’s top big wave specialists chop-hopping into giant triangulating tubes coming from somewhere off Greenland.

Here’s how and when you can watch it

Organizers will share a competition update on Thursday, February 10, at 8:30am GMT. That’s 7:30pm – AEDT, 12:20am – PST, and 9:30am – CET. The event, subject to confirmation, should be greenlit and have heats running within 30 minutes of the competition update.

  • You can watch the stream on PC’s and laptops here.
  • Source the download link for the RBTV app to watch on all other devices here.

Format

The nine teams will be divided into three groups. There will be six 50-minute heats, with each group surfing in two heats. A surfer’s best two waves after both heats will factor into to their individual total score, and a surfer’s best wave will be worth double points. The scoring scale ranges from 1-10 points, meaning that the maximum individual total score is 30 points. The individual surfer and team with the highest sum of points at the end of the day will take home a performance award to the amount of… see below.

Invitees

  • Team 1 – Red: Lucas Chianca (BRA) and Nic Von Rupp (PRT).
  • Team 2 – Cyan Blue: Justine Dupont (FRA) and Antonio Laureano (FRA).
  • Team 3 – Brown: Andrew Cotton (GBR) and Will Skudin (USA).
  • Team 4 – Pink: Rodrigo Koxa (BRA) and Eric Rebiere (FRA).
  • Team 5 – Green: Axi Muniain (EUK) and Francisco Porcella (ITA).
  • Team 6 – Blue: Michelle Bouillons (BRA) and Ian Cosenza (PRT).
  • Team 7 – Yellow: Rafael Tapia (CHL) and Jaime Mitchell (AUS).
  • Team 8 – Purple: Joao de Macedo (PRT) and Antonio Silva (PRT).
  • Team 9 – Black: Maya Gabeira (BRA) and Pierre Caley (FRA).

Prize money

  • Award for Best Female Performance: $9,000.
  • Award for Best Team Performance: $10,000.
  • Jogos Santa Casa Most Committed Award: €1,500.
Natxo Gonzalez (EUK) placed 2nd in Semi Final 2 at the Nazaré Challenge 2018 despite a perfect 10. Photo: WSL

But how did we get here, as in live-broadcasted Naz tag-team tow events?

To paraphrase 2021 Red Bull Nazare Challenge event commentator and Stab writer, Paul Evans.

“The reputation of Naz as a legit big wave venue has undergone several radical transformations in recent years. From initially being opined as a ‘mushburger’ by Greg Long and a ‘cold sore’ by Taylor Paul in a 2013 Surfing Mag article, several iconic moments over the years have shifted Naz’s perception. 

From Laurent Pujol’s shot of Shane Dorian bestriting a giant teepee from below in 2013, to Andrew Cotton’s cortisol-secreting avalanche run in February 2014, and Alex Botelho’s near-death wipeout in 2020, Naz has made a turnaround from unflushable turd, to attracting all of the sport’s global heavy hitters.

“Nazaré just refused to go away,” says Nic von Rupp, “And eventually they all came, everybody. The Hawaiians came over, all the O.G.’s, Twiggy, Greg Long, all the very best guys on the planet came and it ended up being totally validated. Nazaré is the best big wave spot in the world.” 

The re-chic of tow at Naz enabled new surfers to slingshot, rather than straight line, across it’s massive North Atlantic face in a way that lent itself to a progressive form of big wave surfing that combined turns, tubes, and mid-face trickery to a previously unthinkable run-it-and-gun-it approach.

Stab will be posting event updates throughout the day, as well as providing a post-event autopsy. If you forget everything we just said we will also be supplying you with a direct link to the broadcast on RBTV via our main mantle. 

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