When Laird’s Wave of the Millennium bulldozed through Teahupo’o much of the surf world didn’t get their first glimpse until the next month’s SURFER showed up in their mailbox. Sure, the internet existed, but we weren’t exactly submerged in a world where our phones were our greatest resource for sharing news and information. There was certainly less urgency and a little more reliance on word of mouth when it came to learning about groundbreaking moments in history back then.
In our world (the world where surfing is the only thing that exists, that is) there’s nothing more groundbreaking than a man riding a wave bigger than any other before it. And it’d be hard to imagine a day now where it takes longer than 90 seconds for the words, photos and video to start spreading when somebody does chase down the biggest we’ve ever seen.Then Garrett McNamara and Mercedes Benz set up Red Chargers, a big wave contest from Nazaré that will be broadcast live. The major focus, or at least the biggest selling point, is to make sure the entire world doesn’t have to wait a single second to see somebody surf the biggest wave ever.
This week Red Chargers released their first alert of the contest window that stretches to February 29th, 2016, expecting some freight trains to roll through Nazaré on Christmas Eve. The “Code Orange” alert means when McNamara’s crew hits the water on December 24th we’ll be watching them charge live from both the water and the cliff, potentially getting an instant look at the biggest wave ever ridden – if this swell produces. There’s no sure bet what will happen in Portugal this Christmas Eve, but we definitely know by now things have changed a tad since Laird was slung into that Tahitian monster in August of 2000.