Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker won the Body Glove Mavericks Invitational in giant waves with faces that exceeded 13 metres (40 foot) at Half Moon Bay in Santa Cruz, California on Friday.
Competing against 23 of the world’s best big wave chargers in the fourth stop on the Xpreshon Big Wave World Tour, Baker gave a clinic in high performance big wave surfing throughout the event, winning his Round 1 heat, finishing second in the semis and dominating the final.
The 40 year-old Durbanite caught the most waves, taking off in the perfect position, manoeuvring his way around the bone-crushing white-water and pulling into and emerging from a gaping tube.
He posted two perfect 10 point rides on the day, the first in Round 1 and the other in the final, where he finished with a near perfect tally of 29.33 out of 30.
“I am feeling pretty good – amazing in fact!” said Baker on the headquarters boat after the final. “Two of my favourite surfers in the world, Shane Dorian and Greg Long, were in the final so to win Mavericks is the greatest feeling in the world!”
“The waves were pretty big – there were some 20 foot sets in the final. The wind made it choppy and it looked like there was no way you could make it. We just put our heads down and had to go because it was the final. I just got lucky that I didn’t hit a bump halfway down and get catapulted.”
The victory was Baker’s second at Mavericks after his triumph in 2006 and also his second in succession on the BWWT following his win in the Arnette Punta Galea Challenge in Spain in December. He now holds a substantial lead in the 2013/14 rankings.
Body Glove Mavericks Invitational Results:
1. Grant Baker (South Africa) – 29.33 pts
2. Shane Dorian (Hawaii) – 25.53
3. Ryan Augenstein (California) – 16.66
4. Tyler Fox (California) – 12.66
5. Greg Long (California) – 12.00
6. Anthony Tashnick (California) – 0.0