A Brazilian surfer may have set a world record for the biggest tow-in wave ever surfed after a very large swell in Portugal yesterday.
As the rest of Europe sheltered from the fatal storms which battered coasts, Carlos Burle tried to break records in the resulting large waves.
Footage taken at Praia do Norte, Nazaré on Monday shows the wave which may have beaten the world record of 24m set by Garrett McNamara at Nazare, Portugal in November 2011.
A message posted in Portuguese on Carlos Burle’s Facebook page said he was celebrating a wave that beat the record for the largest in the world. ”It was luck. We never know when we will be catching the wave. I still hadn’t surfed any wave and everyone had already had their rides,” Mr Burle told Surfer Today magazine. He was hugged and congratulated by fellow surfers when he got out of the water.
Surfers were taking part in the Billabong XXL surf contest. Mr Burle’s ride off Portugal’s Atlantic coast is one of the contenders for the Billabong XXL wave of the year and the accompanying footage said he dropped “ into a darkened monster of a wave”.
The incident took place shortly after he helped to rescue his Brazilian colleague Maya Gabiera from the water after she experienced a wipe-out. “Maya almost died. For me, it was a big adrenaline moment to get back there after what happened”, Mr Burle said.
“After a near-drowning and dramatic rescue” she was “taken to the hospital with a broken shin but a full recovery is expected”, Billabong XXL said on its YouTube site.
“The best prize of the day was Maya being alive. The second prize was to have surfed a large wave but I think that could have happened to anyone….. Everyone should be congratulated. I am happy to be alive, that everyone came back and that above all Maya is well,” he told reporters speaking in Portuguese after surfing the wave.