Thursday, February 11, 2010

Green Light for Mavericks 2009-2010 Surf Contest is On! Called for Valentine's Weekend

And it's a Yes! The moment Mavericks big-wave surfers have been waiting for since November is sending waves of excitement around the surfing community and fans. The contest is ON for Saturday at the famed break at Half Moon Bay.

It's going to be a Valentine's Weekend of chocolates, flowers, cards - and big-wave surf!

Their tweet posted at 12.58 pm says:

Mother Nature is smiling once again on #MAVS. The 24 have voted, we are a GO for Saturday! Check for details. 21 seconds ago reply  

The first of the four first-round heats will begin at 8.00 am, with semi-finals at 11.30 am, and finals at 1.30 pm. The Awards Ceremony will take place on the beach at 3.00 pm.

Mavericks are asking fans to watch the contest via a free live webcast or at the live viewing party at the San Francisco Giants' ballpark, in order to limit the crowd impact on the small Half Moon Bay and protect coastal eco-systems.

'Both options provide a much better viewing experience than the view from the beach,' they say in their press release.

Viewing options:

Tickets for the AT&T Park can be purchased for $20 in advance, or $25 at AT&T Park or online at For fans in East Bay, there is also a live free viewing event at Miss  Pearl’s Jam House in Oakland, 

There are also boat tours piloted by seasoned local captains.

The illustrious 24 surfers include four previous champions, Greg Long, reigning champion, Darryl 'Flea' Virostko, Anthony Tashnick and Grant 'Twiggy' Baker, and also Matt Ambrose, Ben Andrews, Ion Banner, Chris Bertish, Carlos Burle, Kenny Collins, Shane Desmond, Nathan Fletcher, Brock Little, Josh Loya, Peter Mel, Shawn Rhodes, Ryan Seelbach, Evan Slater, Tyler Smith, Jamie Sterling, Grant Washburn, Dave Wassell, Tim West, and Zach Wormhoudt.

This year’s record-breaking $150,000 prize purse pays out $50,000 for first, $25,000 for second, $15,000 for third, $10,000 for fourth, $8,000 for fifth and $6,000 for sixth.  In the democratic spirit of Mavericks, say the organizers, the remaining 18 competitors will each receive a $2,000 appearance fee. In addition, the prestigious Jay Moriarity Award will once again be presented to the surfer who most exemplifies Jay’s unique spirit.

If the contest had not been called, Mavericks surfers would only have had until March 31 for the Pacific Ocean and El Nino to produce a consistent day of waves that were at least 20 ft Hawaiian in height. They have been waiting since the opening of the contest season window on November 1, and hopes have been high with this being an El Nino winter.

But the perfect swell has been slow in reaching Half Moon Bay, less than an hour south of San Francisco, despite storms. The contest takes place about half-a-mile off-shore at Pillar Point.

Presenters of the event are Sony Ericsson and Barracuda Networks.