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Sarah Gerhardt, Mavericks

First-ever All-Women Big-Wave contest comes to Waimea Bay

27 September 19

The world’s best big-wave surfers will gather to challenge for the
2019 Women’s Waimea Bay Championship in the first-ever all-women big-wave surf competition. 

The Women’s Waimea Bay Championship, which honors powerful women who have worked to break down barriers in surfing, was first founded in 2010 by Betty Depolito and partnered with Red Bull in 2017. 

The event was postponed in 2017 and 2018 due to a lack of appropriate swell in the bay.

“I’m very excited that Red Bull Queen of the Bay is coming back,” said North Shore native big- wave rider Emily Erickson. “Fingers crossed we get the weather and waves we need to bring this to life at Waimea.”

The North Shore is the mecca for not only big-wave surfing, but for the entire surf world and Waimea Bay serves as its grandstand. “It’s really important to me and the other girls to show what we can do. I have a lot of respect for Waimea Bay and the history of women’s surfing,” says Hawaiian surfer Makani Adric. “You get an adrenaline rush and it’s a dream to be surfing there.”

The contest will feature many of the top, most recognizable names in professional women's surfing from around the world. More athletes will be announced in the coming weeks.

Red Bull Queen of the Bay - Holding period of October 1 through November 21, 2019


Keala Kennelly, Hawaii 

Makani Adric, Hawaii 

Paige Alms, Hawaii 

Justine Dupont, France 

Emily Erickson, Hawaii 

Michaela Fregonese, Brazil 

Brittany Gomulka, USA 

Wrenna Delgado, USA 

Kelta O'Rourke, Hawaii 

Raquel Heckert, Brazil 

Bianca Valenti, USA

Jamilah Star, Hawaii

Momo Sakuma, Japan

Nicole Pacelli, Brazil

Andrea Moller, Hawaii

Paulina Ralda, Guatemala 

Silvia Nambuco, Brazil

Felicity Palmateer, Australia 

Laura Enever, Australia

Izzi Gomez, USA

“We are honored to be bringing this big wave event to our community,” said contest director Betty Depolito. “We are remembering women who changed the perspective of what women should be. Through their memory we celebrate the current women big-wave surfers at Red Bull Queen of the Bay.”

For more information on this historic event, please visit 

Red Bull Queen of the Bay will be livestreamed on Red Bull TV, Red Bull Surfing YouTube and on the Red Bull Surfing Facebook page.


Contest Director, Betty "Banzai" Depolito, has made an impact charging big-waves all over the world, including Waimea Bay, since 1979. "Banzai Betty" is a pioneer of women's surfing videos, reporting, media and production. Depolito also has produced and directed many surf competitions like The North Shore Tow-In and The Pipeline Women’s Pro. She also produces the FlHi Girls Surfing & Sports TV show.


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