Big Wave Africa 2003
International Invitational only, speciality event, Dungeons, Hout Bay, Cape Town, South Africa June 2-22, 2003
For seven years, Red Bull Big Wave Africa has offered top local and international surfers the opportunity to compete at the unpredictable, deep-water reef break known as “Dungeons”.
The event has earned International recognition as one of the longest running big wave surfing contests in the world – second only to the Eddie Aikau at Waimea Bay, Hawaii.
With the contest attracting some of the best big wave surfers from around the globe, the core fundamentals and values have remained the same throughout – “to surf some of the biggest waves on the planet and grow the culture of big wave surfing on the Southern tip of Africa.”
A world-class field of big wave surfers, including three of the top four in the 2002 XXL big wave awards, and a streamlined format that enables the contest to be completed in under four hours, are the highlights of the fifth annual Red Bull Big Wave Africa international surfing event.
Journal below by Chris Bertish
The waves for the 2003 event were non-stop!
Training over in Jersey in the Channel Islands was a change from being back home in SA, or in Hawaii a couple months before, but it was a good change.
I had been training for 5 months straight and I was super fit and ready!
The surf over the three weeks ranged from 4-18ft, the whole time, without skipping a beat. Exactly what I had hoped for.
We surfed Dungeons probably 5 or 6 times before they actually ran the event on the last day!
Most practice sessions the waves were 12-15ft and pumping.
Barrels after barrel…Still have yet to make a barrel at Dungeons, the chance is always there and it is only a matter of time before one lets me out!
My mission was to get barreled as much as possible, which is exactly what I did. I got told that I got more barrels than everyone else put together.
But the final day for the contest, the waves were a lot shiftier and I ended up getting more waves on landing on my head, than I could actually catch. My heat saw me getting caught inside for most of the duration and not enough time to get the better waves to push me through.
That’s the way it goes in Big Wave surfing…Sometimes you’re lucky and sometimes not! It just wasn’t my day… but it’ll come, it’ll come…
Greg Long from San Clemente, California, put on an awesome display of big wave surfing to dominate a world-class field and win the 2003 Red Bull Big Wave Africa in Cape Town today.
Competing in huge five to seven metre (15 – 20 foot) surf that produced hollow tubes reminiscent of Hawaiian waves, Long paddled into more waves than any of the other 12 competitors, rode them from further up the Dungeons reef and performed more radical maneuvers to score a unanimous victory in the six man final.
“It was an absolutely incredible day and an honor to surf with all the other contestants,” said an elated and champagne-soaked Long. “Special thanks to all involved in making this event happen. It was great to see the true face of Dungeons – it’s a great wave – and I’m already looking forward to next year.”
Greg Long Winner-On a bomb!
1. Greg Long (San Clemente, California)
2. John Whittle (Durban, RSA)
3. Carlos Burle (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
4. Grant baker (Durban, RSA)