Australian surfer Laura Enever can finally celebrate officially breaking a world record for the largest wave ever paddled into by a woman.
“I knew it was big when I paddled into it and then when I took off I looked down and I knew it was definitely the biggest wave I’ve ever caught,” Enever said, per the WSL.
“I knew it was the wave of my life, the whole way it all came together and the way I committed, backed myself, told myself to go and trusted I could do it. The ride was such a breakthrough for me and a moment that will be really special and monumental in my surf career.
“To get awarded this months later is really cool, I can’t believe it.”
Paddling-in requires surfers to enter waves unassisted, compared to being towed-in by a jet-ski in order to access the biggest breaks.
The previous record was set eight years ago by professional surfer Andrea Moller – the Brazilian tamed a 12.8-meter (about 42-foot) wave, also in Hawaii.
Enever, 31, thanked the previous generation of female surfers who “paved the way” for her success and who “inspired” her to get into the sport.
The Australian hopes her own career will inspire the next generation of girls to follow suit.
“Thank you to all the amazing women and I’m just constantly in awe,” Enever added.
“Andrea Moller held this record before me and it’s an honor to hold that record and keep pushing big wave surfing. And I know that the next girls, the next generation of female big wave surfers are going to do the same.”
Enever started surfing when she was just 11 and went on to have a glittering junior career, being named the World Junior Champion in 2009.
Two years later, she qualified to compete on the WSL Championship Tour where she competed for seven years.
She has since entered into WSL Big Wave events where she continues to push herself to the limits.
“Huge congratulations to Laura for this incredible achievement,” said WSL Chief of Sport Jessi Miley-Dyer.
“Laura is fearless, committed, and a real inspiration, and I’m so proud to celebrate her. These world records really allow us to shine the spotlight on athletes like Laura who are pushing the boundaries of Big Wave surfing.”
The overall record for the largest wave surfed paddle-in was set by Aaron Gold in 2016 – the American tamed a 19.2-meter (about 63-foot) wave off the coast of Hawaii.
Germany’s Sebastian Steudtner owns the record for the biggest wave ever surfed, riding a 26.21-meter (about 86-foot) whopper in 2020.
For more CNN news and newsletters create an account at CNN.com