The gladiators of big wave surfing are congregating in Southern California for the 2008 Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards, which unveil this Friday 11th April at the Grove Theatre in Anaheim.

Regarded as the Oscars of big wave surfing, the 2007/08 awards recognise the world’s biggest and heaviest documented rides over the past twelve months, rewarding the most fearless chargers with serious cash and kudos.

The big wave swell magnets of Chile, Europe, South Africa, Australia, Hawaii, Mexico, California and French Polynesia came alive in 07/08, serving up a number of gargantuan swells that produced rides in all six categories.

In a first for the Billabong XXL, nominated surfers, media, surf industry and webcast viewers will see 1999 World Surfing Champion Mark “Occy” Occhilupo host the eighth annual award’s ceremony.

In all, over $130,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded to the world's greatest big wave surfers. Here are the nominees for 2008:

BILLABONG XXL RIDE OF THE YEAR AWARD NOMINEES

(Surfer prize $50,000 - Video prize $5,000)

Michael Brennan (Tasmania, Australia) at Shipstern Bluff, Tasmania on January 14, 2008. (Video by Kendall O'Brien)

Carlos Burle (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) at Ghost Tree, California on December 4, 2007. (Video by Greg Browning)

Shane Dorian (Kona, Hawaii, USA) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007. (Video by Gustavo Camarao)

Manoa Drollet (Tahiti, French Polynesia) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007. (Video by Gustavo Camarao)

Ian Walsh (Paia, Hawaii, USA) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007. (Video by Gustavo Camarao)

Watch the clip!

http://mpora.com/videos/Safo75T7q More Surfing Videos >>


BILLABONG XXL BIGGEST WAVE AWARD NOMINEES

(Surfer prize $15,000 and a Honda Aquatrax watercraft with HSA sled - Photo/video prize $4,000)

Grant Baker (Durban, South Africa) at Cortes Bank off California on January 5, 2008. (Photos by Robert Brown)

Tyler Fox (Santa Cruz, California, USA) at Ghost Tree, California on December 4, 2007. (Photos by Mike Jones, Bart Keagy, Wayne Kelly & Dave Nelson. Video by Bruno Lemos & Graham Nash.)

Brad Gerlach (Los Angeles, California, USA) at Ghost Tree, California on December 4, 2007. (Photos by Mike Jones, Wayne Kelly, Jason Murray & Sebastian Rojas. Video by Greg Browning)

Vincent Lartizen (Hossegor, France) at Belharra Reef, France on January 4, 2008. (Photos by Greg Rabejac)

Mike Parsons (San Clemente, California, USA) at Cortes Bank off California on January 5, 2008. (Photos by Robert Brown)

Watch the clip!

http://mpora.com/videos/OoTcTyea1 More Surfing Videos >>


MONSTER PADDLE AWARD NOMINEES

(Surfer prize $15,000 - Photo/video prize $4,000)

Ben Andrews (San Francisco, California, USA) at Maverick's, California on February 9, 2008. (Photos by Jack English, Don Montgomery & Frank Quirarte. Video by Noel Robinson)

Mark Healey (Sunset Beach, Hawaii, USA) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007. (Photos by A.J. Neste. Video by Alejandro Berger)

Greg Long (San Clemente, California, USA) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007 (Photos by Jeff Flindt, Edwin Morales & Jason Murray)

Jamie Mitchell (Gold Coast, Australia) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007. (Photos by Jeff Flindt & Rich McMullin. Video by Alejandro Berger)

Rodrigo Resende (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) at Todos Santos, Mexico on December 5, 2007. (Photo by A.J. Neste and Fred Pompermayer. Video by Alejandro Berger)

Watch the clip!

http://mpora.com/videos/ozN0dAx9b More Surfing Videos >>


MONSTER TUBE PHOTO AWARD NOMINEES

(Surfer prize $5,000 - Photography prize $2,000)

Mike Brennan (Tasmania, Australia) at Shipstern Bluff, Tasmania on January 14, 2008. (Photos by Andrew Chisholm & Hilton Dawe)

Carlos Burle (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) at Ghost Tree, California on December 4, 2007. (Photos by Mike Jones, Jason Murray & Sebastian Rojas)

Manoa Drollet (Tahiti, French Polynesia) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007. (Photos by Jeff Flindt, Tony Harrington, Tim McKenna, Tim Jones & Fred Pompermayer)

Raimana Van Bastolaer (Tahiti, French Polynesia) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007. (Photos by Tim McKenna & Dave Nelson)

Ian Walsh (Paia, Hawaii, USA) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on November 1, 2007. (Photos by Sean Collins, Tony Harrington, Tim McKenna, Dave Nelson & Fred Pompermayer)


SURFLINE BEST OVERALL PERFORMANCE AWARD NOMINEES

(Surfer prize $5,000)

Greg Long (San Clemente, California, USA)

Garrett McNamara (Sunset Beach, Hawaii, USA)

Jamie Sterling (Sunset Beach, Hawaii, USA)


BILLABONG GIRLS BEST PERFORMANCE AWARD NOMINEES

(Surfer prize $5,000)

Maya Gabeira (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)

Jamilah Star (Santa Cruz, California, USA)

Jenny Useldinger (Oahu, Hawaii, USA)