Hawaii’s Shane Dorian leads the list of finalists in the 2013 Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards presented by Pacifico taking place this Friday, May 3rd in Southern California. Thanks to several extraordinary rides on an epic swell at Jaws on Maui, Dorian, 40, accrued an unprecedented five nominations in the event – one in every category except wipeout and female performance.
Taking place at the Grove Theater in Anaheim, the 13th Annual Billabong XXL Big Wave Awards will once again serve as the Oscars for the big wave surfing world, acknowledging landmark moments in the sport at any break anywhere on the planet as long as it was captured on camera. Nominated waves were challenged in Ireland, Fiji, Portugal, Australia, Hawaii and at the Cortes Bank, 100 miles off the coast of Southern California. All the nominated rides can be viewed on the event website at www.BillabongXXL.com.
Dorian is up for an assortment of awards including Pacifico Paddle, XXL Biggest Wave, Surfline Overall Performance, Pacifico Tube and the Ride of the Year. If he were to sweep, Dorian could potentially walk with prize money totaling $90,000 out of the Billabong XXL’s total purse of $122,500. The Kona resident is no stranger to the XXL winner’s circle – he has collected champion honors in various categories six times over the last decade, more than any other surfer.
In counterpoint to Dorian’s distinguished career is first-time nominee Anastasia Ashley of San Clemente, California. Ashley, up for the Billabong Girls Overall Performance Award, has in recent seasons gained at least as much social media attention for her form as a model on land as for her form on a board in the surf. Ashley may now round out her list of achievements with her XXL finalist status affirming her as one of the hardest-charging big wave specialists of the year.
The top-line honor at Friday’s Billabong XXL ceremony is the Ride of the Year Award, which bestows $50,000 upon the winner as voted by an “academy” of over 500 of the world’s best big wave surfers, photographers and magazine editors. Nominated along with Dorian is Santa Cruz surfer Shawn Dollar, who conquered a massive open-ocean swell at the Cortes Bank (the legendary seamount 100 miles southwest of Los Angeles, California) and Orange County surfer Greg Long, for an enormous tube at Hawaii’s Jaws. The other two R.O.T.Y. finalists are Hawaiians Dave Wassel and Reef McIntosh, who each completed spectacular barrel rides at Cloudbreak, off the Fijian Island of Tavarua.
Friday’s awards show is invitation-only and will be attended by 2,000 surf world VIPs, but the entire proceedings will be webcast at www.BillabongXXL.com and televised on the ESPN networks on June 9.