A stranger, Luke Shepardson, wins the Eddie Aikau

Luke Shepardson won the Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational tat Waimea Bay.

Shepardson, a Honolulu Ocean Safety lifeguard, scored 89.1 points out of a possible 90 to edge out defending champion John John Florence.

While everyone was waiting for star surfers like John John Florence, Kelly Slater, Kai Lenny, Billy Kemper or Lucas Chianca, it was finally a stranger who triumphed at the Eddie Aikau Invitational. This Sunday, in the mythical bay of Waimea on the North Shore of Oahu in Hawaii, the famous big surfing competition – in tribute to the lifeguard Eddie Aikau who disappeared at sea in 1978 – was to the great surprise won by Luke Shepardson.

Florence won the last Eddie in 2016. No one has won more than once.

A total of 40 athletes were invited, plus alternates. They surfed in two rounds of five heats each, with each competitor riding a maximum of four waves in each round. The best three of the possible eight rides count toward their score.

“I said to myself: if I am one of the guests, it means that I can winsaid Luke Shepardson. It was very scary, the waves were huge and it was a dream come true to participate in the Eddie. I can’t believe it, it’s completely crazy, and now I have to go back to the watchtower to make sure everyone is safe until the end of the day! »

In the standings, Luke Shepardson finished ahead of the other finalists John John Florence (2nd) – who was defending champion , Mark Healey (3rd), Billy Kemper (4th), Kai Lenny (5th), Zeke Lau (6th), Landon McNamara (7th) and Keali’i Mamala (8th). 

For the first time, women were invited and six competed. Andrea Moller made history as the first female to ride a competitive wave at “The Eddie.”

Watch the full contest:

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