An aerial surf battle that started in Australia two years ago is set to go global, with surf footwear brand Kustom offering a US$50,000 reward in a winner-take-all shootout to capture the world’s craziest punt.

The event window opens on 1 August 2008 and runs through to 31 March 2009, with the winning surfer pocketing a US$50,000 cash bounty and the videographer who records the maneuver scoring a US$5000 cash prize.

“Kustom’s mission with the Air Strike is simple. We want to produce surfing so inspired and revolutionary that it breaks all the rules, forever changing the face of surfing as we know it," says Harry Truscott, Kustom General Manager.

“We’ve put a truckload of cash on the table to reward just one move and we expect beaches around the world to light up during the contest window as kids and pro’s alike take to the air to show us the future of surfing. At the end of it all we’d hope the event will produce surfing previously thought unimaginable."

The winner will be the most radical and innovative ‘completed’ maneuver, with all entries posted on the website (www.kustomairstrike.com) and judged by both the public and a select panel.

The criterion is simple, with judges voting on height, innovation and completion of the aerial.

Tow surfing is permitted, although riders are not allowed to use straps.

The Kustom Air Strike mission first launched in Australia in 2006 and ran for two years as a domestic event only under the banner of Kustom Space Kadets. This year it has been opened to entrants from around the world.

Aerial specialist and former WCT surfer Josh Kerr said the Kustom Air Strike provided surfers with an incredible incentive.

“Put it this way, you have to qualify for the big tour (the WCT) against 400 other guys. Then when you get on tour, you've got to beat 44 other guys and you win $30k for an event. You win this thing with one air and its fifty grand! I’m frothing!"

Previous winners Dion Agius, who won in 2006 with a backside flip in Bali, and Julian Wilson, who won with his renowned sushi roll in 2007, set the internet alight when their rides were originally posted.

“We expect the same to happen this time around, only we’re now talking about a much bigger audience given we will be taking entries from all corners of the globe," says Brad Bricknell, Kustom’s National Sales & Marketing Manager.

“We hope the Kustom Air Strike will provide an opportunity for talented underground chargers and grommets to compete against the big names of aerial surfing."

The official kustomairstrike.com website will launch on 1 August, the day the event window opens, with a promotional website currently live.