This is the moment Noah Lane was crowned the winner of this year's The Winter Session - and presented with the cash prize of $20,000.
The surprise announcement was made at the sold-out Shore Shots film festival in Ireland. Co-founder of the festival, Allan Mulrooney, handed over the cheque in front of a packed out audience - filled with Noah's friends and peers - which erupted when Mr Lane was named the winner, and of course, a champion's chair-lift up to the stage to collect his winnings.
''Super stoked, that was insane,'' said Noah. ''It was really cool to have all my friends around and yeah, I'm just buzzing.'' It's the culmination of a plan hatched at MSW HQ involving flying an over-sized cheque out to the Emerald Isle and keeping it all quiet before the big reveal.
This year saw hundreds of winter wave chargers send their edits in, all with the hope of taking home the top prize. But in the end, it was down to the Winter Session's 40 shortlisted surfers to decide who is the overall winner – and Noah's epitome of all things cold water surfing in Snow Capped Tubes edited by Guy MacIndoe, came out on top. It's a mix of pumping, hollow tubes and A-grade surfing in frigid conditions during the kind of session you wait all year round for. Recap on the video by hitting the link above and wait for that last barrel...
Although originally from Australia, Noah's become a mainstay in Irish surfing, putting the hours in up and down the coastline whenever he can. So to be able to award him with this prize on the soil he now calls home was a pretty special moment.
Ash Palmer, from Monster, said: ''Alongside Magicseaweed, we are pumped to announce that Noah won the Winter Session and goes home with a $20,000 cash prize. The level of entries in the Winter Session this year were next-level and I highly advise you to go back and re-watch all the highlights. Thanks to everyone that entered, I hope to see even more entries next year.”
Thank you to everyone who entered; took time out of their schedule to film (and edit!), pull on a wetsuit and to the Shore Shots team – we're so stoked with the turn out for this year's competition. It was a pretty close call – congratulations also to Pedro Boonman who placed second and a joint third finish for Brett Barley, Fred Compagnon and Nic Von Rupp.
All pics by James Connolly.