What do big wave surfing and Formula E racing have in common? To find out, the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E team caught up with Maya Gabeira, two-times world record holder, in Nazaré - Portugal’s big wave surfing mecca. And we learnt that the two sports have a lot more in common than you’d think.
Maya’s status among the world’s best big wave surfers was cemented on 11 February 2020, she made it into the Guinness Book of World Records for the second time - beating her own world record - for the highest wave (73.5 feet) ever surfed by a woman.
But before she reached the top, she had to start at the bottom. Spending hours in the water, day after day, constantly pushing herself to the limit. Despite her multiple successes, Maya has no thoughts of retiring; for her, there is always room for improvement.
“There have been many moments in my life that demanded me to be driven and to believe in myself,” she says. One can see the passion in her eyes while she speaks about what she loves most. Continually, her gaze wanders in the direction of the giant waves breaking upon the dramatic coastline.
What inspires the hard work, dedication, focus, passion and preparation? She explains, “My inner drive probably comes from the ability to believe in myself, the will to challenge myself and to improve and once I have put so much dedication and time into achieving something the drive is there…”.
Maya’s words resonate powerfully with us. This same commitment and hunger has driven TAG Heuer Porsche from the very beginning - not only to win, but to improve constantly. And both sports share the thrill of speed and power; the element of risk; the courage and skill to make split-second decisions in a constantly shifting, fast-moving environment.
Inspired by her confidence and competitive attitude, we asked her to tell us more about what it takes to become one of the world’s best big wave surfers.