Nazare Tow Surfing Challenge gets the green light (updated)

Stu Nettle
Form Guide

After a frustrating season of big swells ruined by bad winds and vice versa, the Nazare Tow Surfing Challenge is a go.

At 8am, this Tuesday the 11th - local time, 7pm AEST - the contest will kick off.

Already more than three months into the waiting period, the Wozzle has chosen a smaller swell, relatively speaking, but the conditions should be primo with very light north winds, even an outside chance for an offshore, followed by light onshores in the afternoon.

The contest format features ten teams representing their country, except for Team World, Team Young Bulls(?), and Team Justine, featuring Justine Dupont and her driver. For Australia, the team is RCJ and Mick Corbett.

Here's the full list of competitors:
Team World: Sebastian Steudtner (DEU) & Maya Gabeira (BRA)
Team Brazil: Rodrigo Koxa (BRA) & Pedro Scooby (BRA)
Team Great Britain: Andrew Cotton (GBR) & Tom Butler (GBR)
Team Australia: Ross Clarke-Jones (AUS) & Mick Corbett (AUS)
Team Portugal: Alex Botelho (PRT) & Hugo Vau (PRT)
Team Young Bulls: Lucas Chianca (BRA) & Kai Lenny (HAW)
Team Europe: Nic von Rupp (PRT) & Francisco Porcella (ITA)
Team France: Benjamin Sanchis (FRA) & Eric Rebiere (FRA)
Team Atlantic: Grant Baker (ZAF) & Antonio Silva (PRT)
Team Justine: Justine Dupont (FRA) surfer only/Fred David driver only

EDIT: Ross Clarke-Jones wont recover from injury in time so his place in Team Australia will go to Basque surfer Axi Muniain, and he and Mick Corbett will now be known as 'Team Nazare Water Fun.'

From the press release:

"Each team will compete twice in an hour-long heat with a priority system to ensure all riders get their shot at some of the best and biggest waves on the day."

"The event will be captured from multiple angles and broadcast live. When the competition wraps, a nominating panel will examine the video evidence and select the biggest, best-ridden waves of the day as finalists. At an awards ceremony later in the day the athletes themselves, along with a group of expert judges, will review the nominated rides and place their votes in an assortment of categories including Men's Wave of the Day, Women's Wave of the Day, Team Champions and the Jogos Santa Casa Commitment Award with the winners being crowned at that time."

You may recall that in November 2018, a large west swell was forecast for Portugal with many surfers racing to Nazare, however the idiosyncracy of the wave, specifically the way swell refracts out of the Nazare Canyon and collides with the original swell train to form oversize wedges, doesn't happen on west swells.

Read about how the wave is formed here.

Tuesday's swell, however, is from the north-west bringing the canyon wedges into effect. 

Comments

Brian from Brissy's picture
Brian from Brissy's picture
Brian from Brissy commented Sunday, 9 Feb 2020 at 6:05pm

I thought RCJ was still injured? Is that correct? Will the night king 'bierke' replace him?

t-diddy's picture
t-diddy's picture
t-diddy commented Monday, 10 Feb 2020 at 11:41pm

night king comment is brilliant, well played. he is nearly transparent

Tim Bonython's picture
Tim Bonython's picture
Tim Bonython commented Sunday, 9 Feb 2020 at 8:12pm

Boo! I dont like contests in BWS. But its good for Nazare & the surfers involved.

seen's picture
seen's picture
seen commented Sunday, 9 Feb 2020 at 9:31pm

Why go nationalistic? I’ll hold judgment on the format until it’s had a run, but they are all professionals surely they can surf with who they want?

mikehunt207's picture
mikehunt207's picture
mikehunt207 commented Sunday, 9 Feb 2020 at 10:04pm

I predict either maya or justine recieve the womens wave of the day award

blackers's picture
blackers's picture
blackers commented Monday, 10 Feb 2020 at 11:37am

Pedro Scooby, best name ever. Where are those roast chicken rolls Blowin?

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Monday, 10 Feb 2020 at 11:56am

OK, few quick changes:

RCJ is out.
Axi Munian is taking his place.
Mick Corbett and Axi will now go under the inspired name, 'Team Nazare Water Fun'.

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Monday, 10 Feb 2020 at 12:20pm

How many plumbers are in the draw ?

Aus_Gannet's picture
Aus_Gannet's picture
Aus_Gannet commented Monday, 10 Feb 2020 at 1:46pm

All sounds like a bit of a wank to me!

zawl's picture
zawl's picture
zawl commented Tuesday, 11 Feb 2020 at 5:47am

Wheres Team America??........

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 11 Feb 2020 at 9:22am

Comp starts at 7pm AEST, ten hours time, so it's dark in Nazare right now.

Tim Bonython took this shot of Ian Walsh not long before the sun set.

Tomorrow should be a touch bigger - i.e 'big' but not record breaking - with similar surface conditions.

Wave lover forever's picture
Wave lover forever's picture
Wave lover forever commented Tuesday, 11 Feb 2020 at 10:50pm

Excellent picture cheers. can i watch this comp on swellnet or do i have to use facebook, Or is their another way, Many thanks for your help

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Tuesday, 11 Feb 2020 at 9:46am

Tim B, the man who doesn’t like big wave contests!

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 12 Feb 2020 at 6:15am

Heavy stuff, I hope he's OK.

Clam's picture
Clam's picture
Clam commented Thursday, 13 Feb 2020 at 10:26am

Wsl recently supported the Fight for the Bight but now look at this.
Have they all forgotten why the paddle in craze started?
Shame on the competitors...