This weekend kicks off a historic moment for surfing, where some of the world's best surfers are expected to put on a show.
To crown champions, a set criteria is required, and for surfing, it's a simple triumvirate of speed, power and flow, all set against the backdrop of a judging scale and criteria tweaked for the ocean conditions on offer for any given day.
Think of it like this: Speed, power and flow are the pillars of the way judges analyze surfers' performances, but they'll put these categories into context at the start of each day -- you can surf far more fast and powerfully in hollow, sizeable waves than mediocre, fat waves.
Beyond these three major considerations, judges will also take the following into account: commitment and degree of difficulty, innovative and progressive maneuvers, combination of major maneuvers and variety of maneuvers.
So, if a surfer does their maneuvers in the steepest part of the wave, and combines turns, airs and barrel rides, they will score higher than an athlete who does several variations of the same maneuver, in a safer part of the wave.
For those new to the sport, here is an easy visual guide of the judging criteria for professional surfing on the World Surf League Championship Tour.