The Shaw and Partners Financial Services Summer of Surf doesn’t do anything small, and this weekend’s Shaw and Partners Shannon Eckstein Ironman Classic is no exception with giant surf predicted for the third straight year. When you combine the 15 feet of swell that’s expected to pound the Northcliffe stretch of sand with the $240,000 of prizemoney up for grabs over the two-day event it creates a pressure cooker that’ll test the nerves of even the most experienced athletes.

Retired 2022 Ironman champion and long time rival of Eckstein, Matt Poole thinks its fitting for a race like the Shannon Eckstein Ironman Classic.

“Shannon would perform at his best when everything was on the line, when it mattered most, he was hardest to beat,” he said.

And City of Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate agrees.

“The Eckstein name is etched in world surf lifesaving folklore. Given the incredible feats of Shannon over many years, this event is on every elite athlete’s bucket list.”

Incredible feats is an understatement, the man considered by many as the greatest to ever race has a resume that includes 9x Ironman Series crowns, 6x World titles, 8x Australian Titles and 44 Gold Medals at the Aussies but he never claimed a Summer of Surf Ironman crown, and that’s something Poole can’t help but laugh at.

“I’ll have one thing over him,” he said.

“Shannon transcends the sport, this event is now just as important as all the titles he has won; winning the ironman classic goes straight to the top of the resume.”

The season has been a tough test for the Shaw and Partners Financial Services Summer of Surf, huge waves battered the 10,000 point Shaw and Partners Hayden Kenny Classic at Alexandra Headland, then a shark feeding frenzy terrorised the Manly open causing it to be postponed; but due to the generosity of Shaw and Partners Financial Services that cancelled event will now be rerun this Friday in a double header unseen in our sport.

Shaw and Partners Financial Services co-CEO Earl Evans is ecstatic to be rolling out the biggest weekend in surf sports history. 

“To be able to bounce back from Manly with a double header and $240,000 up for grabs in the racing alone is simply amazing,” he said

“Add to that the Red Bull Airshows, Skydive exhibition, National Anthem by Ironwoman Bella Williams and afterparty we hope this event goes down in the history books and Shaw and Partners Financial Services are so pleased to be able to provide such a great weekend of racing for the athletes and fans of the sport.”

Evans also added a few more surprises to the weekend offering up free Icecream across the two day event that has even the biggest kids excited. 

The Shaw and Partners Shannon Eckstein Ironman Classic and rerun Manly open are also the second and third 10,000 point bonus events within the series. After Tj Hendy and Lizzie Welborn claimed the opening premier event at Alexandra Headland late last year, they’re both in line to potentially win another $85,000 plus a Subaru car worth $35,000 if they can win both Iron finals this weekend.

In the other individual events, there is also a $10,000 bonus if you can win 2 events and $25,000 if you can win all three; plus, $20,000 up for grabs in the 6 person mixed Taplin Relay.

Racing kicks off from 7.30am on Friday with the Matt Hall Redbull Airshow to signal the start of the finals package at 2.55pm. While the Shannon Eckstein Ironman Classic begins at 7.30am Saturday with finals from 1pm.

All media enquiries please contact Ben Cochrane 0432295257