“It would be wonderful to beat my own record”

World record holder Rodrigo Koxa returns to Nazaré a year after he surpassed the record of Garrett McNamara and does not hide his ambition to surpass the official mark of 24.38 meters reached in Portugal.

“This is my sixth season in Nazaré and my goal, of course, is to continue surfing. I think the records are to be beaten. Just like Garrett [McNamara] had this record for eight years, now it’s my turn and I’m going to continue training and who knows, one day, if I can beat my own record, it will be wonderful, but I’m really enjoying this moment as a record player, “the Brazilian surfer told.

On the relationship with American Garrett McNamara, his predecessor as world record holder of great waves, Rodrigo Koxa, 39, emphasizes that the man who placed the ‘Cannon of Nazareth’ in the mouths of the world was his childhood idol and that have maintained a great friendship for several years.

“Garrett has always been an idol, I’ve always been a big fan of Garrett. I lived there in Hawaii in 2000, and we’ve always had a very strong relationship. He here [in Nazaré] taught me a lot. steps for us to have a capable team today. I think surfing has that, this brotherhood, “he says.

What was McNamara’s reaction when Koxa “stole” the world record? “He did a very ‘cool’ post saying that I deserved that, that I fought hard for that and that he was very proud to know it was me. It’s amazing that you see that love of your idol I was overjoyed, and I remember that I woke up in the morning and told my wife: look what Garrett wrote about me! “He describes.

On the way to 40 years, the Brazilian considers that “to surf giant waves the experience counts a lot”, since “the experience makes the difference”, as well as the constant technological evolution in the level of the materials used in this challenging sport, that has improved substantially the safety of practitioners.

“Every year we are more confident and we feel more capable. Technology is also important in training, we have more and more information. So at 39, today, I feel more and more a kid, I train with good professionals and I feel me more and more able to enter the big sea, “says Koxa.

The Brazilian has already received an invitation from the World Surf League to compete in Nazaré Challenge, stage of the Great Waves World Circuit, whose waiting period started on October 1 and extends until March 31, 2019, which made him “very proud “.

Invited to describe the emotions that lived in the wave that earned him the world record, picked up on November 8, 2017, the sportsman opens his heart and thanks to the team that accompanied him at this unforgettable moment, among which was the pilot of ‘jet ski ‘Sérgio Cosme.

“We stayed more than two hours, on a giant day, waiting for a wave for me and when the wave came, in front of the lighthouse, he looked and said: Koxa, it’s a bomb! look and it was a building, it was a mountain of water and I took a deep breath, it passed a quick movie in my head and I said: ‘vai’ And at that moment I had to get out of my comfort zone. what I’ve done all my life, “he describes.

And he goes on: “I started to wave down and I remember that it was a wall of water, I started to wave, with a hole, it was midday and suddenly I saw a shadow. There was a monster behind me wanting ‘ catch me. “And I go down that hole, that shadow invades and I hear the noise behind me. People who ‘catch’ the giant wave want to be close, want to be critical, but when it is in the critical place, you want to escape So it’s an ambivalence: you want to be there, but when you’re there, you want to get out of there. ”

Koxa points out that it was “wonderful” because the wave energy alone made the surfer able to get out of the most critical area and successfully complete the mission he set out to do.

“At that moment I felt that I had surfed the biggest wave of my life,” he concludes. Now, you want more and bigger.

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