The first mega swells of the Big Wave season have hit, igniting excitement across the globe and showing off the heart-pounding potential of this year's inaugural Nazare Tow Surfing Challenge presented by Jogos Santa Casa. Here are a few reasons to keep your eye on Nazare and get pumped for the big day.
1. All-New Team Format
The contest features a unique tow team format. Two-person teams made up of men and women will take turns surfing and driving the ski as they compete in a series of one-hour "expression session" style heats. Dive deeper into the full format here.
2. The Stars are Ready
When the big swell hit, the world's best teams were all out there in the lineup riding monsters and getting a taste of what's to come at the Nazaré Tow Surfing Challenge. Get a full recap of all the highlights and standout performances in this Tow Team Warm-Up Session video.
3. World's Best Women
For the first time ever, two female big wave chargers will compete in a WSL event at Nazaré. Justine Dupont and Maya Gabeira have been breaking barriers over the past few seasons and now get their chance to make surfing history this year. Watch Justine in Portugal earlier this year.
4. World Record-Breaking Moments
Nazaré is home to the biggest waves on the planet and with enough swell, it's very possible a new Guiness World record could be set in competition right before our eyes. Witness some of the past record-breaking rides here.
5. Ultimate Watermen and Women
The athletes in the Nazaré Tow Surfing Challenge are more than just surfers. They're some of the sport's most capable and well-trained watermen and women. Entering this event requires them to drive the jet skis and conduct rescues, in addition to pushing performance boundaries by riding the mammoth waves. Meet all the teams here.