SOURCE: Mavericks Surf Contest 2007

December 18, 2006 17:23 ET

The 2007 Mavericks Surf Contest® Presented by Ask.com® Returns to Half Moon Bay

Twenty-Four of the World's Best Big-Wave Surfers Will Converge and Vie for the 2007 Title

HALF MOON BAY, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- December 18, 2006 -- Lauded as the world's premier big-wave surf event, The 2007 Mavericks Surf Contest® presented by Ask.com® is earmarked as the season's most anticipated big-wave surf occurrence. On just 24-hours notice between January 1 and March 31, 2007, 24 legendary big-wave surfers will make the pilgrimage to the treacherous Mavericks surf break to compete for the famed title. This year, the invitees will compete for an impressive $75,000 prize purse. The purse breakdown awards $30,000 for first place, $12,000 for second place, $7,500 for third place, $3,500 for fourth, $2,500 for fifth and $1,500 for sixth place.

"Ask.com® is excited to be an integral part of the preeminent big-wave surfing event, and, as a leading search engine, to be the official go-to source for information for all things Mavericks," said Greg Ott, vice president of marketing for Ask.com. A quick search for Mavericks Surf Contest on Ask.com® will give fans quick access to webcasts and viewing locations, videos, bios on the surfers and the history of the event. In addition, with Ask.com® and Ask.com Mobile™, fans can find Mavericks images, news, maps, walking and driving directions, blogs and other information across the Web for fans everywhere. "We're excited to support this great surfing event, as well as to be a resource for all the Mavericks fans," remarked Ott.

When the ideal confluence of swell and storms hit Half Moon Bay last year generating 50 foot waves and ideal weather, a keyed up crowd of 50,000 spectators experienced the surprise win from South Africa's Grant "Twiggy" Baker. This year these extraordinary watermen will again risk their lives in the hollow, shark-infested waters for the pride of conquering this storied wave.

"We are thrilled to partner with Ask.com® this year to continue to build the backdrop for the world's most respected big-wave athletes to challenge this monster wave. Last year we were honored with near perfect wave conditions lasting all day long. With any luck, Mother Nature will again provide an opportunity to witness the surfers' remarkable displays of courage and athleticism," said Mavericks Surf Ventures Managing Partner Keir Beadling.

When a contest-worthy swell, born from the storms off the coast of Japan, approaches the Mavericks break, the 24 invited surfers get the contest greenlight and have a mere 24 hours to be onsite and ready to go. This year's contest aims to accommodate the tremendous audience interest while respecting the fragile surroundings of this natural wonder by implementing a number of soon-to-be-announced initiatives. These include a groundbreaking live webcast on CBS SportsLine.com, a unique webcast viewing event at "baseball's perfect address" and the home of the San Francisco Giants -- AT&T Park and a "greenlight alert" SMS campaign for Mavericks fans. Surfers and fans alike can track the waves and stay informed on contest announcements at the official website www.maverickssurf.com.

After lengthy discussions, surfing legend and Contest Director Jeff Clark announced this year's invitee list, which includes some of the most prestigious big-wave warriors on the planet. This year the list of exemplary invitees includes in alphabetical order: Matt Ambrose, Grant "Twiggy" Baker, Ion Banner, Ross Clarke-Jones, Kenny "Skindog" Collins, Randy Cone, Danilo Couto, Shane Desmond, Brock Little, Greg Long, Josh Loya, Garrett McNamara, Peter Mel, Shawn Rhodes, Ryan Seelbach, Evan Slater, Tyler Smith, Russell Smith, Jamie Sterling, Anthony Tashnick, Darryl "Flea" Virostko, Grant Washburn, John Whittle and Zach Wormhoudt.

Also named were the 15 alternates, which include: Ryan Augustine, Eraldo Gueiros, Carlos Burle, Mike Gerhardt, Dan Malloy, Chris Bertish, Mike Brummett, Lawton Smith, Alex Martens, Noah Johnson, Jake Wormhoudt, Tim West, Doug Young, Yann Kazabjian and Rusty Long.

About Mavericks Surf Ventures:

Mavericks Surf Ventures, LLC is a partnership between legendary surfer and board-shaper Jeff Clark and San Francisco-based sports management and marketing firm Evolve Sports, LLC. Mavericks Surf Ventures produces The Mavericks Surf Contest® and offers apparel and a soon-to-be-launched signature wetsuit under the Mavericks™ brand. Coined as "the wave beyond," Mavericks™ inspires hardcore athletes to face the unpredictably raw power of Mother Nature, and stirs the souls of those who aspire to challenge their own limits. On a date to be determined on 24-hours notice during the winter season of 2007, 24 invited surfers will challenge themselves and the extremes of Mother Nature to compete for the esteemed title of The Mavericks Surf Contest®. Official sponsors of The 2007 Mavericks Surf Contest® presented by Ask.com® also include Clif Bar & Co., Surfer Magazine, Hotline Wetsuits and Capture Technologies.

About Ask.com

A leading search engine on the Web and proud sponsor of The 2007 Mavericks Surf Contest, Ask.com combines world-class search technology with one-of-a-kind search tools to help people get what they are looking for faster. Ask.com sites include Ask.com US (http://www.Ask.com), Ask.com Deutschland, Ask.com Espana, Ask.com France, Ask.com Italia, Ask.com Japan, Ask.com Nederlands and Ask.com UK. Additionally, Ask.com syndicates its search technology and advertising units to a network of affiliate partners. Ask.com is a division of IAC Search & Media, a wholly owned business of IAC/InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ: IACI). Ask.com b-roll footage is available at www.thenewsmarket.com/ask.

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