(Huntington Beach, California) February 17, 2009 — Two weeks remain in the holding period for The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau. The North Shore is currently enjoying a solid pulse of northwest swell of around 10 feet Hawaiian. This swell will diminish through Wednesday, to be followed by another small-to-moderate north-west swell later in the week.
The early stages of a larger system are currently coming together and could result in a moderate-to-high swell episode around February 22/23. Once again, unfortunately, early projections have it falling short of an “Eddie”-sized swell – somewhere around 15+ feet. This could bode well for the Quiksilver Premium Ku Ikaika Challenge presented by C4 Waterman at Makaha, on the West Side of Oahu. The outlook will be updated as the system unfolds. Go to Quiksilver.com/eddie for swell updates and to sign up for the Official “The Bay Calls The Day” text alert and to watch the LIVE contest webcast when it is on.
The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau is the world’s most prestigious big-wave surfing event and offers the largest first place prize of any surfing contest in the world ($55,000 USD). The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau is the only big-wave surf contest sanctioned by the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP), the governing body of professional surfing. As such, the event is able to bring together some of the most recognized names in surfing, including nine-time ASP World Tour Champion Kelly Slater and three-time ASP World Tour Champion Andy Irons.
Scheduled to take place at the hallowed grounds of Waimea Bay, on the North Shore of Oahu, between November 30, 2008, and February 28, 2009, The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau, requires one day with a minimum of 20-foot surf (Hawaiian scale, translating to waves exceeding 40 feet faces) in order to run.
Held in honor of the legendary Hawaiian waterman, Eddie Aikau, The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau gathers 28 of the most skillful and dynamic big-wave surfers from around the world as polled by a comprehensive panel consisting of influential watermen, members of the surf industry, and internationally recognized surfing Associations.
The first memorial event for Aikau was held in 1984 at Sunset Beach, two miles north of Waimea Bay. It was won by local standout Denton Miyamura. Following the inaugural event, The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau moved to Waimea Bay, where it has remained ever since. 2008 marks the event’s 24th anniversary; in only seven of those years have the waves been big enough and the conditions right to hold the contest.
In this week’s Mark Healey Waimea Weekly Update, Mark interviews South African Invitee Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker, a respected big-wave charger for both paddle and tow-in. Grant won the Red Bull Big Wave Africa contest in 2008 and Mavericks Surf Contest in 2006. To see the full webisode, viewers can tune-in at www.quiksilver.com/eddie.
These video clips along with other videos from The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau are available for syndication through Splashcast; videos can be embedded to blogs, social networking sites and more. Make your way to http://web.splashcast.net/web_watch/?code=HXBN3705OC.
Special thanks to Pat Caldwell from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for the swell data and forecasts. Current conditions and surf report for Waimea Bay, provided by Surfline, is available on the event website www.quiksilver.com/eddie.
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