The Billabong Pipeline Masters is a prestigious event in surfing held annually at Banzai Pipeline in Oahu, Hawaii. It was established in 1970 and attracts the top 45 surfers from the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) as well as 16 surfers who compete in walk on trials. The surfers compete for a share of $320,000 prize money. The event is the final leg of the Triple Crown of Surfing and the final event on the ASP World Tour.
The Billabong Pipe Masters challenges the World Tour like no other event in professional surfing. If 2nd Reef sets detonating on shallow coral heads doesn’t make the elite Pros a little nervous, going toe-to-toe against a menagerie of local tube specialists who have forged their careers courting Pipeline probably does.
Last year there were no trials for the Pipe Masters. This year however, most of the top wildcard options have been awarded to Hawaiians based on the performances from the Volcom Pipe Pro, Van’s Tripe Crown and local contest ratings.
Of the varied crew of wildcards set to take on the Pipe Masters this year, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more committed lot than Oahu’s Jon-Jon Florence, Maui’s Ian Walsh, all-time Pipeline favorite Bruce Irons and Kauai’s Kamalei Alexander and Danny Fuller.