With the 2014 Billabong XXL Ride of the Year Award due to finish at sunset on March the 19th, we thought we would take a look over the contenders and pick our favourite three. This, by no means, has any bearing over the official results as this will be decided by a panel of Surfers, surf writers, editors and photographers, but we thought we would throw our favourites out there – just for fun. The brave individual selected by the official pack of judges will pick up a cool and well-deserved cheque for $50 000.
In no particular order the 3 rides we have chosen are as follows and all three clips can be viewed below this post.
First up, we have opted for Mark Healey’s drop in wave at Teahupoo on the 1st of June 2013. Part of the reason for selecting this particular clip is because not only does it feature Mark setting up for a beauty of a barrel at Chopes, it also captures him dropping in on a fellow rider (believed to be G-Mac) and then the unfortunate and rightful wave rider gets tumbled right in the pit!
Secondly we have chosen Tasmanian Marti Paradis tackling huge Shipsterns and we feel this deserves a top three place purely down to the brutality of the wave and quite how well Marti deals with it. Firstly he brazenly tackles the notorious Shipsterns ledge, he then casually ducks his head as the lip threatens to side swipe him and finally as the spit explodes out of the barrel, he remains steadfast and merely shrugs off what must have felt like a bomb blast behind him.
Lastly, it was a toss up between two Surfers very much in the spotlight at the moment, Andrew Cotton and Grant “Twiggy” Baker and we have opted for Andy on a beast of a wave at Nazare. We liked this particular wave purely for the sheer size of it and the cleanliness of Andrews line, and if we are honest because he is also representing Great Britain too!
There are so many videos to choose from and we don’t envy the panel’s task, our choices are certainly not exhaustive and you will no doubt prefer other clips. Enjoy the 3 videos below and head over to the Billabong XXL website where you can see all of this years entries and be sure to let us know which one you think deserves the $50 000 prize?