Grant "Twiggy" Baker
South Africa

Grant "Twiggy" Baker, 40, from South Africa won the Maverick's Surf Invitational today handily beating five other finalists,  Shane Dorian, Ryan Augustein, Tyler Fox, Greg Long, and Anthony Tashnick.   Baker also won Mavericks in 2006.

Trophy and Prize Money: First place is $12,000, second place is $6,000 and third place is $5,000, according to Mavericks Invitational spokeswoman Jessica Banks.

It was a spectacular day of surfing with not only some magnificent rides, but some outrageous wipeouts.  Waves were 40-50 feet on the face moving at around 35mph.  The water temperature was 54-58 degrees.   The conditions were pretty near perfect.

The site at the Oceano Hotel saw thousands of fans flock to the big screens to watch all the action.  The viewing area has expanded greatly from last year, the crowds moved quicker and the traffic smoother.   Big congratulations are in order for sure.

Watch the replay on:

Alex Martin's wipeout in a practice round that kept him out of the competition this year.

Crowd watching the surfers on the big screen in the VIP section.

The broadcast online on was excellent this year.  The camera work was amazing and the broadcasters very knowledgeable.

Also...The final hour of the event broadcast on Universal Sports Network on DirectTV and Dish Networks was very exciting.

View of Mavericks from a boat in the flotilla in the bay watching the event and aiding the surfers.

Contestant racing down the face of the big wave.

Ben Wilkinson takes a header in the third round.

Personal watercraft stand by to rescue any surfers in trouble.  Each surfer also wore a special inflatable vest this year.  If a surfer went under, the vest would inflate and zip them to the surface.

View of Mavericks.  You can see the boats in the lower right of the shot.  You are barely able to see the surfers, but they move with the waves from the bottom left side toward Pillar Point, passing by the boats. 

You can almost see Pillar Point RV Park from here, just on the other side of the harbor.

Final standings...
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