Photos: Corey Wilson
It was a great day for sports. Back in the United States (and Canada, I guess), select Major League Baseball teams celebrated opening day and hoards of people gathered in stadiums to drink beer, eat horribly processed cylinders of pork, then stare at Instagram while coming to the sudden and cruel reminder that baseball is painfully boring by the fourth inning. And then there was the NCAA championships — what a game! There were a few good footy games here in Australia and in Russia, Vladamir Putin won a horse race. I made that up, but there is that famous picture of him horseback so who knows? A great day for sports either way.
Meanwhile, at Bells…
Where do I start? The WSL started by running women’s Round 4. Tyler Wright won and the love of my life, Silvana Lima, lost. I cried a tear of agony from my wind-torn perch as final hooter sounder. if the judges are going to over-score anyone, they should over score-her — you know, for the good of women’s surfing.
And for the good of men’s surfing, we should probably avoid running heats in waves like these. Mick Fanning wasn’t all too thrilled about having to surf today. Rightfully so —the four most recent World Champions (Gabriel Medina, Kelly Slater, Mick Fanning and Joel Parkinson) surfed in today’s four heats and none of them posted a heat total that eclipsed thirteen points. Oof.
Speaking of former World Champions, Kelly Slater had some interesting things to say after surfing against Gabe. He acknowledged how important of a heat it was, then acknowledged his waning chance at this year’s crown and finished with a note on how sporadic the results are now — gone are the days when Kelly wins everything and all was predictable. Did he mean to say that Filipe winning at Snapper was a fluke? Probably not, but we can pretend like he did if it makes you feel any more enthralled.
There’s still plenty of time left in the waiting period, and only one more day needed to finish the event. The swell isn’t much of an issue. The wind, on the other hand, might consider therapy. The good news is that we’re dealing with nature and the wind is going to do whatever the wind feels like doing regardless of what’s expected of it. You feeling lucky?
Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Round 5 Results (1st to QF, 2nd = 9th):
Gabriel Medina (BRA) 13.00 def. Kelly Slater (USA) 12.53
Josh Kerr (AUS) 10.40 def. Joel Parkinson (AUS) 10.17
Mick Fanning (AUS) 12.27 def. Jadson Andre (BRA) 11.60
Nat Young (USA) 14.66 def. Jeremy Flores (FRA) 5.93
Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Quarterfinal Match-ups:
Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Gabriel Medina (BRA)
Owen Wright (AUS) vs. Josh Kerr (AUS)
Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Mick Fanning (AUS)
Filipe Toledo (BRA) vs. Nat Young (AUS)
Rip Curl Women’s Pro Bells Beach Round 4 Results (1st to QF, 2nd = 9th):
Lakey Peterson (USA) 16.13 def. Silvana Lima (BRA) 13.23
Johanne Defay (FRA) 14.54 def. Alessa Quizon (HAW) 11.60
Tyler Wright (AUS) 17.63 def. Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 10.90
Courtney Conlogue (USA) 13.44 def. Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 13.26
Rip Curl Women’s Pro Bells Beach Quarterfinal Match-ups:
Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) vs. Lakey Peterson (USA)
Carissa Moore (HAW) vs. Johanne Defay (FRA)
Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) vs. Tyler Wright (AUS)
Coco Ho (HAW) vs. Courtney Conlogue (USA)