The Eddie Aikau is off (again)

Stu Nettle
Swellnet Dispatch

It's off then it's on, now it's off...and it's got nought to do with the forecast.

After finding some sort of common ground, Quiksilver and the Aikau family have again fallen foul of each other and the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau won't run this season. The new rift apparently opened up just last weekend though all parties are coy on the details. Glen Moncata from Quiksilver told Hawaii Now:

"After a long, hard negotiations with the Aikaus, there just wasn't enough time to put on a proper contest. There's a lot of preparations involved, and with the passing of time, we don't think we can put together a proper contest."

The Aikau family and Quiksilver had previously disagreed on terms, in October last year Quiksilver withdrew support of the contest only to reinstate themselves just in time for the 2016/2017 season. That's not the case this year. In a statement, a Quiksilver representative said:

"Quiksilver has been honored to celebrate the life of champion big wave surfer and Waimea Bay lifeguard Eddie Aikau. Quiksilver is proud of the tradition of the event which underlines its respect for Eddie Aikau, the Hawaiian people and the community at large, and Quiksilver greatly appreciates more than 30 years of partnership with the Aikau family."

In the past the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau has been a WSL specialty event but the WSL reportedly withdrew financial support of the event earlier this year.

The last time the competition ran was February 2016 when John John Florence triumphed on a colossal day. The contest has only run nine times in thirty years.

Comments

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 9:44am

Take it on Da Huii

radiationrules's picture
radiationrules's picture
radiationrules commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 10:16am

Bill Gates?
Patagonia?

crg's picture
crg's picture
crg commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 10:33am

The Eddie, Mavs and Dungeons...it would appear the big wave thing doesn't seem ready to be commercialised...

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 11:28am

The Eddie and Mavs have been massively commercialised, the problem appears to be fighting over the proceeds.

I think the nature of big wave comps, that they're more 'events' than run-of-the-mill contests, almost like annual music festivals, is the reason for all the fighting. There's an increased chance for mainstream coverage and it's easier to monetise the product so the profits will be greater.

crg's picture
crg's picture
crg commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 12:45pm

You're right...commercialised was the wrong word. Controlled may be better. I think the biggest issue they face is the temporary ownership and exploitation for $$ of a specific location. With any geographical space comes a sense of entitlement and over time an almost surrogate ownership. When external bodies come in for a short period and attempt to realise a profit from the space quickly, lots of noses get out of joint.

Sprout's picture
Sprout's picture
Sprout commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 11:32am

Why can't the family/surfers just run it themselves. No prizes, no live streams, no sponsors, no money required. You're invited, you turn up and surf for the honour.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 11:49am

Still costs a lot to run it. If they're gonna get approval to clear the water then they'll need safety and also meet all sorts of requirements around handling crowds and traffic.

I also wonder if they'd be able to use the 'Eddie Aikau' name. They'd be wading into some complex legal areas.

Booka78's picture
Booka78's picture
Booka78 commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 1:45pm

Best idea I've heard in ages, surfing big waves for the enjoyment & challenge not the $$$

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 1:50pm

And the best thing is you don't have to be invited!

Revolutionary, eh?

carpetman's picture
carpetman's picture
carpetman commented Wednesday, 11 Oct 2017 at 12:26am

Eddie would go... if the pay cheque is big enough.

blindboy's picture
blindboy's picture
blindboy commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 2:01pm

Try and put that in a wave pool!

Chipper's picture
Chipper's picture
Chipper commented Tuesday, 10 Oct 2017 at 3:48pm

Sadly, I bet it's all about the cash.... they will talk respect, honor and the family but when push comes to shove money talks and everything else walks!!! My guess is its a simple negotiation break down about how much QUicky gets for doing the work (partly for
organizing and running it) and how much the family wants.... from all the streaming,
advertising to merchandise etc etc..... UGLY is what I call it. I vote no prize money and the advertising dollars pay for the operational costs with the surplus going to Surf Aid or some other good cause.

eastcoastbuoy's picture
eastcoastbuoy's picture
eastcoastbuoy commented Wednesday, 11 Oct 2017 at 2:52pm

ditto ditto Chipper. ........"then when you get the money, you get the power. Then when you get the power you get the...." World of Greed and misused Power we live in - its everywhere from Weinstein to Waimea. Hold the contest for the right reasons which is primarily to honour a great waterman.