Bruce Irons Brian Bielmann/Red Bull Photofiles

The 2009 Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau is officially in the history books, with competitors tackling massive 40 to 50-foot waves in the largest sustained episode of surf to hit the Hawaiian Islands in 40 years.

Monday saw 40-foot waves, but contest director and big wave icon George Downing opted to wait to run the event until Tuesday, a decision which baffled some but proved to be the best move.

The legendary event, which last ran in 2004, draws big-wave enthusiasts from all over the globe, along with an estimated 50,000-plus crowd of spectators. They were all treated to insane drops, gnarly wipeouts, and mind-blowing rides this year.

When it was all done, California's Greg Long took the title and the $55,000 first prize, making a late push to upset Kelly Slater in the final heat of the day. Long mercilessly attacked the 40 to 50-footers and even scored a perfect 100-point ride, a feat all the more impressive considering that he rode Waimea for the first time this week.

Defending champ Bruce Irons, who rode to victory at the 2004 event in a dramatic closeout barrel, placed fourth out of the 28 international competitors. Red Bull teammates Ross Clarke-Jones and Jamie O'Brien and also cracked the top ten, finishing in sixth and seventh, respectively.

The Monster Drop Award, for the most hellacious-but-successful takeoff of the contest, went to Red Bull Chile’s Ramon Navarro, who also finished fifth overall. This was his first time as an invitee into the event. Navarro’s winning wave was one of the last of the competition, a huge, seemingly endless ride on his backhand, followed by a detonation of whitewater that he emerged from and then stuck with all the way to the beach. He earned a perfect 100 points.

Fuel TV will air a one-hour highlight show on December 11 at 6:30pm PT/9:30pm ET. The show will re-air several times over the weekend. 

RESULTS:

1. Greg Long (California)

2. Kelly Slater (Florida)

3. Sunny Garcia (Hawaii)

4. Bruce Irons (Hawaii)

5. Ramon Navarro (Chile)

6. Ross Clarke-Jones (Australia)

7. Jamie O'Brien (Hawaii)

8. Mark Healey (Hawaii)

9. Garret McNamara (Hawaii)

10. Noah Johnson (Hawaii)

11. Shane Dorian (Hawaii)

12. Makuakai Rothman (Hawaii)

13. Reef McIntosh (Hawaii)

14. Andy Irons (Hawaii)

15. Grant Baker (Hawaii)

16. Carlos Burle (Brazil)

17. Kohl Chrtistensen (Hawaii)

18. Kala Alexander (Hawaii)

19. Peter Mel (USA)

20. Takayuki Wakita (Japan)

21. Ibon Amatriain (Spain)

22. Clyde Aikau (Hawaii)

23. Keone Downing (Hawaii)

24. Mike Ho (Hawaii)

25. Darryl 'Flea' Virostko (USA)

26. Brian Keaulana (Hawaii)

27. Rusty Keaulana (Hawaii)

28. Pancho Sullivan (Hawaii)


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