Cronulla to host iconic international bodyboard contest at infamous Shark Island on Sunday

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Green lights are on for the 2024 Shark Island Challenge on Sunday as the eyes of the watersport world focus on one of bodyboarding’s iconic competitions in death-defying conditions.

Located off the southern end of Cronulla, Shark Island is an infamous wave that sees open ocean swells unload on a shallow reef about 200 metres off the coast.

First launched in 1997, the Shark Island Challenge catapulted to the front of the world surfing stage in 2001 when giant conditions smashed the coastline making for classic rides and all-time wipeouts.

The event waiting period runs from 24 May to 30 June with competition called on for the first time since 2017 this week.

Sunday’s event will see local riders take on the best of the world including athletes from Hawaii, France and around Australia kicking off at 11am.

Competition organiser Sam Venn told us why it’s a great spot for a competition.

“(The wave) is located in the middle of residential Cronulla, basically in a giant amphitheatre,” he said.

“It’s great for public viewing, anyone that’s out walking on the esplanade will be able to get a glimpse of the worlds best bodyboarders in action.

“The wave itself can be one of the heaviest and the most perfect in the world.

“On Sunday we’re expecting great sunny weather and waves somewhere in the 6-8 foot range.”

Liam Lucas in action. (Supplied)

Liam Lucas (pictured above) will be in the last heat come Sunday and says he is looking forward to competing in the iconic event.

“This forecast is looking pretty solid,” he said. “This contest is one I have always wanted to be a part of as it shows exactly what bodyboarding is about.”

Image gallery: Sam Venn Photography

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