Huge news regarding two iconic big wave events.
For years there have been reports of tension between the Aikau famaily and Quiksilver over the running and distribution of revenue from the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau event.
Now, according to media reports, it seems that tension between the family and the event’s longtime sponsor has reached a point of irreconcilable difference, leading to the event likely being pulled for the 17/18 Hawaiian season.
A statement from a Quiksilver representative said:
"Quiksilver has decided that it has run out of time to sponsor the 'Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau' big wave surf event for 2017-2018.
Quiksilver has been honoured to celebrate the life of champion big wave surfer and Waimea Bay lifeguard Eddie Aikau. Quiksilver is proud of the tradition of the event which underlines its respect for Eddie Aikau, the Hawaiian people and the community at large, and Quiksilver greatly appreciates more than 30 years of partnership with the Aikau family.
Even though the parties were unable to reach an agreement, Quiksilver remains open to continuing discussions for a 2018-2019 event and beyond so that all parties can better prepare for the event."
Quiksilver’s Glen Moncata also added, "After a long, hard negotiation with the Aikaus, there just wasn't enough time to put on a proper contest. There's a lot of preparations involved, and with the passing of time, we don't think we can put together a proper contest."
This is a huge blow surfing in general. But also for all fans of surfing, the surfers on the invitee list of what is widely regarded as the most prestigious big wave competition in the world, and for the legacy of Eddie Aikau himself.
Hopefully we haven’t seen the last of this iconic event.
In other news, it has now been confirmed that the embattled Titans of Mavericks event has been confirmed as running in 2017!
The WSL today released a statement announcing they had struck a deal with Titans of Mavericks and Cartel Management that will see the event become part of the Big Wave World Tour until 2021.
WSL CEO Sophie Goldschmidt praised the agreement, letting everyone know that Mavericks has long held a special place in her heart and she would’ve most certainly devastated should it not have run.
“We’re very pleased with this opportunity to work with the big wave community in bringing the Mavericks event to life on the international stage,” she enthused.
“The League has always held a high amount of respect for the both venue and its community as one of the pillars of big wave surfing. The WSL intends to continue to run the Mavericks event and celebrate the stories of those who steward and surf it through the Big Wave Tour. This is a huge moment for both the organization and the sport of surfing.”
Perhaps Sophie harbours a hidden desire to slay some brown-water Mavericks beasts herself!
And she won’t be the lone woman should she suit up and hit the lineup. The presser also announcing that for the first time the world’s best female big wave surfers will have the opportunity to compete at Mavericks.
Newish Big Wave World Tour Commish, Mike Parsons, also weighed in on the news.
“Every big wave surfer and fan on the planet knows that Mavericks holds a special place within this community. It’s one of the best big wave locations in the world and the opportunity to put it alongside Puerto Escondido, Nazaré and Pe’ahi is massive for the Big Wave Tour. After discussion with the athletes and the Senior Management team, including it in this year’s season was a no brainer. We’re all thrilled at the opportunity to run an event there.”