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Donegal's Maguire In A Class Of His Own With 3 Red Bull Surfing Nods

Donegal's Maguire In A Class Of His Own With 3 Red Bull Surfing Nods
Jonathan Byrne
By Jonathan Byrne
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The winners of the 2021 Red Bull Big Wave Awards will be announced on October 29th and Conor Maguire leads the nominations.

The Donegal native has gotten the nod for 'Ride of the Year', 'Biggest Tow' and 'Performer of the Year' for World Surf League's 2021 ceremony.

It's a huge accomplishment as Maguire finds himself among some of surfing's heavyweights in Kai Lenny and Lucas 'Chumbo' Chianca.

The Big Wave Awards honour surfers that are 'pushing the boundaries of what’s possible' in taking on some of the world's biggest waves.

Maguire's Mullaghmore Meander

Maguire began his surfing at Bundoran Surf Co as an eleven-year-old and told the Irish Independent he was 'hooked on it from day one.'

Lockdown led to a lot of surfing for Maguire during 2020, in which he found himself one of few out on the ocean with a surf board.

The isolation didn't always prove to be a stumbling block, as it led to him riding a mammoth wave on October 29th in Mullaghmore, Co. Sligo.



Maguire told Magic Seaweed he had to get permission from Sligo County Council and the RNLI to ride a 60 foot wave, which required a five jetski strong support team.


The wave was a product of Hurrican Epislon which pushed massive currents of water towards the Atlantic coast. But Maguire was well prepared.

"Originally when I saw the swell on the charts, I was like: ‘Oh fuck, of course it would happen during lockdown,'" he told the surfing website.


"So typical. My main concern was not to offend anyone or put pressure on the hospital system or anything like that."

According to Maguire, he received a lot of support from the local community of Mullaghmore and many came out to the coast to see him follow through with the surf.

Conor was brought into the heart of the big wave by his jetski tow-in driver and his heart started to race at the sight of what was before him.


"I thought: ‘Oh fuck.’ Then he just picked me up, did a loop and slung me in like a big pendulum … When I was dropping down, it kind of felt like I was dropping 30 or 40 seconds."

But it all went to plan for the Donegal man. The thoughts of completing the surf was far more daunting than the actions that followed.


"The wave itself, it was smooth, man. I felt like butter or something. It was pretty easy … I just kind of stood there. But it ended up catching up with me in the end."

The clip of Conor's surf went viral as you would expect, and has led to him now being recognised internationally as a big wave surfer.

Let's hope for a win on October 29th.


See Also: Grandfather, Father And Son Line Out For Moycullen In Hurling Championship

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