From the announcement of an exciting new tour format, to the death of legend Derek Ho, epic Australian swells and the Big Wave Awards, it's been a pivotal month for surfing. If it went down, we covered it and here's the highlights as said by surfing's key players.

"Set to run on August 9 at the Surf Ranch in Lemoore, the action will hopefully give surf fans around the world not only something to watch, but that all-important glimmer of hope. Hope that there are sunnier days to come." The WSL announces the Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold Rumble At The Ranch, a 16 surfer, mixed-doubles format event that will be our first since Lockdown.

My board went sideways, it flipped up, it hit me in the shins, then the ribs, then flipped again, then hit me in the face, and then I cartwheeled three times down the face." Red Bull Big Wave Award Worst Wipeout Winner Keala Kennelly talks through her epic Jaws tumble on Surf Breaks.

2020 Wipeout of the Year Nominee: Keala Kennelly at Jaws
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2020 Wipeout of the Year Nominee: Keala Kennelly at Jaws, Maui, Hawaii on December 12, 2019. Video by Carlo Carbajal.

"The 2021 tour will start in November 2020 in Maui, Hawaii for the women and in December 2020 in Oahu, Hawaii for the men. The 2021 CT season will finish with β€˜The WSL Finals,' a new single-day World Title Event in September 2021." WSL Erik Logan announced the cancellation of competition for 2020 and a new Tour format for next year.

"The aim of these broadcast-only strike missions is to guarantee the best surfing in the best waves possible. With the iconic South Stradbroke Island as a venue, that's just what we'll get." The Boost Mobile Pro Gold Coast, one of two Australian Grand Slam events in the Countdown Series, is due to go down on South Stradbroke Island between 1 September and 31 October.

South Stradbroke Island AGSS South Stradbroke Island - WSL / Andrew Shield

"Her surfing is so impressive to watch -- it's stylish, smooth, and powerful. In this full-day session, she throws a mix of frontside and backside airs, lays into some perfectly-timed turns, and finds the barrel for good measure." Sky Brown takes to Waco. The WSL's Bryan Benattou comments on the 11-year-old, who could become the youngest athlete to skate at the Tokyo 2021 Summer Olympic Games, is also an incredible surfing talent.

"Whether in the barrel at Pipeline or in the shallow end of that Pennsylvania pool, Derek Ho personified the spirit of Hawaiian surfing: proud, loyal, a bit reckless at times, but almost always dignified, and true to the essence of why we ride waves." Sam George remembers Derek Ho who died this month.

Derek Ho, Pipe Master, 1993. Derek Ho - WSL / Ed Sloane

"Man, I love my country and I love these athletes. The main driving source for me is that I want the best for them.'' Brett Simpson, the newly appointed US Olympic Coach, talks to Zander Morton.

"I am really looking forward to the challenge and excited to see how the girls step up and perform out there." 4X time World Champion Carissa Moore is looking forward to the women returning to Teahupo'o for the first time in 15 years.

Four-Time World Champ Carissa Moore On A Return To Teahupo'o
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Getting ready for the Countdown Series events in Australia, Carissa Moore on the women's return to Teahupo'o and BWA Wipeout Week.

"In my opinion, Maya's wave was the biggest of the year." Portugal-based videographer Jorge Leal weighs in the debate in The Inertia on whether Kai Lenny or Maya Gabeira rode the biggest wave of the year at Nazare.

Always known as a premier, step riddled but fickle Sydney wave, this week Deadman's turned into a legit big wave location." With the East Coast of Australia being hammered by swell all month, Ben Mondy reported on when Manly's Deadman's slab went XL.

"Everyone sees this one perspective of her, and I wanted to show the depth of her personality and what a wonderful person she is." Filmmaker Peyer Hamblin on his biopic of Carissa Moore called Riss.

"If you're learning how to surf, and you start in Waikiki beach but then you get a wildcard to go to the Pipeline Masters, you're not going to be able to do it. Not in a week at least. It would be a dream come true to drive a real formula one car." Kai Lenny competes in the Virtual F1 Monaco Grand Prix, having just seven days training.

Kai Lenny Racing Kai Lenny Racing - WSL / Ridge Lenny

"We play in their playground and I understood the risks involved when entering the ocean, but that shark owes me a new foil!" Michel Bourez posts on Instagram after being chased down by a shark whilst foilboarding at home in Tahiti.

"It turned out just by luck that surf spots were the perfect thing to take photos of from space. When the sun would glint off the swell you could literally see the swell direction coming in at these world-class, famous waves." NASA astronaut Christina Koch talks surfing and Space.

Christina Koch Christina Koch - NASA
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