Also "stunning" and "shocking!"
Nazaré, the picturesque Portuguese big-wave spot colonized by Hawaiian Garrett McNamara in 2011, has had a wild run of press this northern hemisphere autumn. Oh, it has been a media darling for years now, who could ever forget Garrett and CNN’s Anderson Cooper dancing through the lineup on a sled?
Without question an iconic moment in surf history.
But this 2019, non-surf media seems to have turned the dial up very many notches. Any time Nazaré comes alive, headlines scream about “extreme surfers” “defying death” chasing “50 ft, 65 ft, 115 ft” “mountains of water.”
Our World Surf League is quoted in many of these stories like today’s featuring Lucas “Chumbo” Chianca and Ian “Costanza” Cosenza and a “stunning, shocking” rescue as described by the New York Post.
It was “point break” for one pro surfer whose dramatic Jet Ski rescue from a giant wave was captured on video in Nazaré, Portugal, last week.
A drone taped the nearly one-and-a-half-minute video, which shows surfer Lucas “Chumbo” Chianca riding an incredible wave in rough waters, with his teammate Ian Cosenza waiting to give Chumbo a lift back to shore.
But just as Chumbo hooks himself and his board to Cosenza’s Jet Ski, an approximately 50-foot wave mounts behind them.
Zipping across the water at 60 miles per hour, the pair of Brazilian surfers make it safely to shore in the nick of time, with the massive tidal push on their tail ready to consume Cosenza and Chumbo, who is hailed as one of the best big-wave surfers alive.
The World Surf League, which released the video, declared it “one of the craziest rescues ever seen.”
Beautiful, no? Except by my count there are three employees at the World Surf League’s Santa Monica headquarters who actually surf.
Pat O, Devon Howard and Dave Prodan. Unless one of them declared it as “one of the craziest rescues ever seen” can the description be trusted? If the video starred a stand-up paddleboarder navigating very scary, head high Manhattan Beach closeouts I would believe but… well… let us examine for ourselves.
That’s pretty crazy.