Posted July 29, 2017

Here is how Round 1 looks and these are some stacked heats for sure. Defending world champ, Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker will be pulling out all the stops as he plans to take another win. While, east coast favorite from Long Beach, New York, Will Skudin has plans of his own to take his first ever event win.

Watch live this Monday July 31st at WSL.

The 24-man field is compiled off of four separate lists. The first 10 invitees are decided directly off the previous year’s Big Wave Tour rankings. Should anyone in the Top 10 not be available, a spot opens up for the next-highest rated surfer.

The local event promoters select six local wildcard entrants. In Puerto Escondido, those slots will be filled by longtime Puerto standouts Coco Nogales, Oscar Moncada and Jose Ramirez along with rising stars Angelo Lazano, Rogercin Ramirez and Jimel Corzo.

The WSL keeps four slots open at each stop to use at their discretion. One is an injury wildcard (being utilized by Makua Rothman in Puerto Escondido), the other three are based on blend of each surfer’s big-wave skills, their experience at the venue, and their ability to draw in fans. Damien Hobgood and Peter Mel are two of the confirmed choices there.

The final four slots are chosen by the Big Wave Award committee, which sifts through all of the WSL Big Wave Award nominations when determining who will earn the final four slots. A blue-ribbon panel comprised of judges, surfers, and former award winners determines the ranking of this list, based on who’s consistently showing up and performing when the surf gets serious. This is essentially the qualifying process for aspiring Big Wave Tour stars.

(c) 2017