Two ASP Big Wave World Tour (BWWT) events, the Quiksilver Ceremonial in Punta de Lobos, Chile, and the Billabong Pico Alto, Peru, are on Yellow Alert with a projected 30-foot ocean swell heading toward the region. Event organizers are monitoring the conditions, and either event could be called on with a Green Alert within 48 hours of the start of the contest.
As the world's best big wave surfers prepare to potentially kick off their respective 2014/2015 BWWT Title campaigns, Gary Linden, who founded the Tour, dissected the mechanics of Chile's Punta de Lobos.
â€œThere are so many pieces that need to come together for Punta de Lobos to work," said Linden.
â€œPunta De Lobos is a really unique wave because it's a big lefthand point. There is an outside ledge barrel and if you make that section it's up to a 500 meter ride. It's not the biggest wave I've ridden, it's not the longest, but combined, it's the biggest, longest wave I've ever surfed.
â€œAnother good thing about Punta de Lobos," he said, "is that it holds as big as it gets. It's unique to the Big Wave World Tour because it's the only real lefthander on Tour and it allows for performance big wave surfing as well. If you look at the other stops on tour, most are rights or a peak, but Punta de Lobos is the only lefthand-only wave on Tour. I'm really excited.â€
In contrast to the ASP World Championship Tour, BWWT contests have just 24 surfers competing in a single-day event. The Quiksilver Ceremonial Chile and the Billabong Pico Alto would each see the ASP BWWT Top 12, led by reigning world champion Grant 'Twiggy' Baker, as well as six ASP wildcards and six local wildcards competing for the best waves.
Baker, who Surfline honored at the 2014 Billabong XXL Awards for Best Overall Performance, was just nominated for an ESPY.
2014/2015 ASP BWWT SCHEDULE:
Southern Hemisphere (April 15, 2014 through August 31, 2014):
- Punta de Lobos, Chile
- Pico Alto, Peru
- Dungeons, South Africa
Northern Hemisphere (October 1, 2014 to February 28, 2015)
- Todos Santos, Mexico
- Punta Galea, Basque Country Spain
- Pe'ahi (Jaws), Maui HI