Surfer snaps back after terrifying wipe-out in big 15m wave


In what has been described as the "wipeout of the year", Andrew Cotton was severely injured after being hurled through the air and crushed by the big wave near the seaside town of Nazaré.

The wall of water has left Cotton in a full-body brace.

British surfer Andrew Cotton vows to return to the sport after wave leaves him hospitalised with broken back.

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His wife Katie Cotton, 41, was in Portugal with him and their two children, but returned home to Braunton in North Devon last week.

"I'm pretty good at falling off and have had a lot of wipeouts but this time I remember feeling a weird sense of weightlessness I've never felt before which must've been when I was flying through the air". Thank you to all the lifeguards and crew who helped stabilise me and do a great spinal recovery.' Mr Cotton was rescued and placed on a spinal board before being taken to a local hospital.

Cotton can be seen getting lost amongst the huge swirling waves and once it breaks he realises he's not going to make it around the section and literally jumps for his life before he's eaten up by the whitewater. I knew I was deep, but that's part of the fun of surfing Nazaré.

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"I'm already very much living my own dream in that I surf professionally and catch some of the biggest waves in the world", Cotton says on his official website.

Speaking to ITV Westcountry from his hospital bed he said: "The wave didn't do exactly what I thought". I'm already focusing my energy to get fit and back out there on some more big rollers.

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