THE 2004 XXL SHOWDOWN

posted by / News / March 22, 2004

IRVINE, CA — (March 19, 2004) — With less than two weeks remaining in the 2003/04 Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards, new entries from Australia have added to the worldwide flavor of the competition. The amazing photos depict Aussie surfer Andy Campbell at a death-defying break off the southern tip of Tasmania, one of the most remote and exposed coastlines in the world.

“They’re clearly among the biggest, nastiest waves yet documented being ridden in the Southern Hemisphere,” said XXL competition director Bill Sharp. “They’re terrifying.”

The Tasmanian waves, along with over {{{100}}} photo entries from other breaks around the world, may be viewed on the www.BillabongXXL.com website. Click on PHOTOS for the full display.

The Billabong XXL Awards, presented by Monster Energy Drink, each year acknowledge the top achievements in the sport of big wave riding over the previous 12 months. The competition ends March 31, and the winners in an assortment of categories will be announced on April 16, 2004 at a gala ceremony in Southern California. Last year’s XXL champ, Hawaiian Makua Rothman, received a whopping $66,000 check for his 66-footer at the break known as Jaws on Maui.

This year, entries have been received from Australia, South Africa, Tahiti and Mexico, along with Hawaii, Oregon and California — and the Cortes Bank, a lonely submerged reef in international waters off the USA’s West Coast. In addition to the XXL Award, the big wave elite will be vying for the Monster Energy Biggest Paddle-In Award, the Surfline/Jay Moriarity Best Overall Performance Award, and an all-new prize for the Monster Tube of the Year. The winners are decided by a panel of surfing experts who will carefully analyze a massive collection of photographic evidence.

According to Sean Collins of Surfline, the official surf forecaster of the Billabong XXL Awards, there is still time for more contenders to be produced before the annual event concludes on March 31.

“There’s a possibility of a last-hurrah swell to come out of the North Pacific next week, and also one of the bigger storm swells of the year for Europe,” said Collins. “But most of the action right now has shifted to a strong early Fall season in the Southern Hemisphere. Chile just received one of the biggest swells South America’s had since last June, but with some potent storms modeled to move under Australia in the coming days, New Zealand looks like the strongest chance of anywhere in the world to receive an XXL-class swell in the next week or two.

“On a global basis,” added Collins, “it actually looks like a very busy time for big waves.”

Billabong XXL event organizers have also announced the gala awards presentation will be on the evening of April 16, 2004 at the Grove Theater in Anaheim, California. The biggest names in the surfing world will be on hand for the invitation-only function, which will recap the winter’s heaviest days and greatest rides, and recognize those surfers with the superlative achievements. The evening’s proceedings will be carried worldwide as part of a live webcast. Remote XXL viewing parties are being planned for Sydney, Australia and {{{Rio}}} de Janeiro, Brazil.

Awards to be given out at the Billabong XXL Awards on April 16, 2004 include:

Monster Biggest Paddle-In Award (last year’s winner: Toby Cunningham) Surfer prize: ${{{5000}}} Photo prize: $1000

Monster Tube of the Year Award (new category) Surfer prize: $5000 Photo prize: $1000

Surfline/Jay Moriarity Best Overall Performance Award (last year’s winner: Garrett McNamara) Surfer:$5000

Billabong XXL Biggest Wave Award (Last year’s winner: Makua Rothman) Surfer prize: $1000 per foot of face height ($60,000 minimum) Photo prize: $5000

For more information please see the event website at www.BillabongXXL.com

Media Contacts Bill Sharp SurfNewsEd@aol.com 949-548-6740

Kim Peterson Kim@billabong-usa.com 949-753-7222

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