Winners Announced October 29 at 3:00 PM PT
LOS ANGELES, Calif./USA (Press Release) - The World Surf League (WSL) released the official list of nominees for the 2021 Red Bull Big Wave Awards. $350,000 in prize money will be awarded across four categories for men's and women's divisions: Ride of the Year, Biggest Paddle, Biggest Tow, and Performer of the Year.
This year's nominees spanned the globe with surfers representing countries like Brazil, Germany, Ireland, South Africa, the United States, and France. The majority of the nominated rides come from the infamous big wave breaks of Nazaré in Portugal and Pe'ahi (a.k.a. "Jaws") in Hawaii, USA, but this year's shortlist also sees rides from Mavericks in Half Moon Bay, California, USA, Todos Santos in Mexico, and Mullaghmore Head in Ireland.
The winners will be announced during the 2021 Red Bull Big Wave Awards Show on October 29, 2021. The show will be streamed on WorldSurfLeague.com/redbullbigwaveawards and audiences will discover who will be taking home the prestigious awards from some of the wildest rides this year.
Ride of the Year
The Ride of the Year is awarded to the male and female surfers who demonstrate the most advanced and committed level of big wave surfing during a successful ride, as judged by available video footage. While raw size is taken into consideration, it is ultimately the level of performance that is rewarded.
All-round waterman Kai Lenny is leading all the categories with submissions in each with waves ridden at Jaws, Pe'ahi, and Mavericks at Half Moon Bay in Northern California.
The Biggest Paddle Award goes to the male and female surfers who paddle into, and successfully ride, the biggest wave of the year.
This year's nominees include big names like 2018 Big Wave World Champion Keala Kennelly (HAW) and world-renowned Big Wave charger Justine Dupont (FRA).
Men's nominees include three-time Big Wave World Surfing Champion Grant ‘Twiggy' Baker from South Africa and four-time Pe'ahi Challenge Champion Billy Kemper leading the charge with rides at Mavericks and Jaws, respectively.
The Biggest Tow Award goes to the male and female surfers who, by any means available, catch and ride the biggest wave of the year.
The Biggest Tow Award will be a battle between Justine Dupont (FRA), Maya Gabeira (BRA), and Michelle des Bouillons (FRA). Last year Dupont and Gabeira went head-to-head for a new World Record with the biggest wave ever ridden by a woman, with Gabeira edging out Dupont with a stellar ride at Nazaré. This year, Dupont's nominations span three locations for the category, including Mavericks, Jaws, and Nazaré.
The men's nominees include Conor Maguire's (IRE) submission at Mullaghmore Head in Ireland, Kai Lenny (HAW), Sebastian Steudtner (GER), Lucas "Chumbo" Chianca (BRA), and Francisco Porcella (ITA) with rides Nazaré and Jaws.
Performer of the Year
The Performer of the Year Award acknowledges the top-performing male and female surfers over the course of the last 12 months based on every ride captured on video or still images.
The 2021 Red Bull Big Wave Awards winners will be announced on October 29, 2021, on WorldSurfLeague.com/redbullbigwaveawards. Tune in to the 2021 Red Bull Big Wave Awards Show, produced by Red Bull Media House, to witness reactions from the world's best big wave surfers as the winners of the 2021 Red Bull Big Wave Awards are unveiled.
To watch all the nominated rides, please click HERE.