At just 20 years of age, Maya Gabeira is already recognized around the world as the best female big-wave surfer of current times. This is all because her skill and courage contributed a great deal to her becoming the first Brazilian to win the prestigious title of Champion of the XXL 2007 Girls’ Overall Performance for waves she surfed in Todos os Santos, Mexico, and Waimea, Hawaii. This fearless big-rider from Rio is the daughter of Federal Deputy Fernando Gabeira, but she wants nothing to do with politics. She aims to specialize in the tow-in method, created so surfers can get to the biggest waves the ocean can create. Maya’s career started by chance. She got to know the sport while waiting on the sand for an ex-boyfriend who loved to spend hours in the sea surfing with friends. Tired of waiting so much, she decided to do something. Five years ago she enrolled in a surf school in Arpoador, Rio de Janeiro, and since then she’s not scrimped on conquests. The surfer currently lives on the North Shore of Oahu Island, Hawaii, and trains around five hours a day. When the sea is no good for surfing, she tackles a 6-mile (10-km) run and practices yoga. The reason to all this effort? Her next goal is to become the best big-wave surfer of all time.