Today [Friday Jan 7] was big at Nazare. Like, 50-55ft faces big. One of the most powerful storms of the season so far has been pummelling Portugal and even though a load of hard-charging, hard-grafting big wave hounds took to the water, everyone is holding out for tomorrow.
So yeah, this is pre-game! The lemon next to the pie. This morning that north wind was still ripping through Praia do Norte but when it dropped, a few tow teams got busy. Lucas Chumbo was first in the water around 1pm followed by around eight or so other crews for a warm up session before conditions clean up in the morning.
As for how you get ready for such an event? “I’m ready to go,” said Justine Dupont. “As for how I’m prepping, double checked the straps, fins, eating some cereal bars and checking over the ski too. A little stretch tonight and a veggie meal – go to bed early. [laughs].”
For Andrew Cotton, this legend feels it's a redemption session! After all the time Cotty's put in out there – that WSL performance is playing on his mind. “Was a bit disappointed after that comp,” he told MSW earlier today. “Felt like I made some really silly mistakes and am looking to sort of redeem myself tomorrow [laughs]. I don’t want to say I’m going to play it safe but I’m going to aim to draw some better lines, you know. Concentrate on making waves rather than be super, super deep. Which I’ve sort of got back into the habit of doing. Yeah, looking forward to it. Let’s hope the fog holds off.” Cotty ended up running safety today.
And for today's session? Current world record holder for biggest wave ever surfed Rodrigo Koxa said: “Was one of those really nice days - bit, but not huge. Waves were probably in the 50-55ft range. That’s 55ft faces, but I’m not sure, haven’t seen all the footage yet. Tomorrow will be more perfect, no wind, good light in the morning. Excited to wake up early and then boom. Let’s get some.”
Talking about today, Pedro Calado added: "Expecting very big waves and strong wind today, forecast is looking better for tomorrow. But it will be good for our team to practice and get in tune, we're going without pressure, there will be big waves for sure so we just hope no one gets hurt and everybody comes happy from the water.
"Tomorrow we'll be going first light, i believe it's gonna be really good, light wind, probably surf all day but in the morning it's gonna be sick."
Rodrigo then followed up a few moments later. “Actually, just seen the footage, maybe 60ft!”
Stay tuned for more from tomorrow.