Womens Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach: Day 2

The world's best surfers took to the lineup this afternoon to battle it out in clean three foot (1 metre) waves on offer at Bells Beach as the Rip Curl Women's Pro presented by {{{Ford}}} Fiesta ran through Round 3 of competition, determining the eight remaining Quarterfinalists.

Stop No. 2 of 8 on the 2008 ASP Women's World Tour, the Rip Curl Women's Pro has showcased the undeniable talents of the world's best surfers over the past few days, and with three ASP Women's World Champions as well as four past winners of the ASP Women's World Tour event at Bells Beach remaining in the draw, the finale of the 2008 Rip Curl Women's Pro is shaping up to be an impressive affair.

Layne Beachley (AUS), seven-time ASP Women's World Champion and three-time winner of the ASP Women's World Tour event at Bells Beach ('94, '98, '99), displayed her refined form this afternoon, collecting the day's high heat total of a 16.96 out of a possible 20 en route to her Round 3 victory over Serena Brooke (AUS).

"The surf out there today is really touch and go," Beachley said. "Some heats will have plenty of waves breaking through the bowl while others will only have one or two. I tried to get a few waves under my belt at the start and really tried to use the whole wave and surf them all the way to the beach."

Beachley, who was absent from the winner's dais last season, is keen to put another victory on her scorecard, eyeing the Rip Curl Women's Pro title as a fitting start to her 2008 ASP Women's World Title campaign.

"Last year was the first season in a long time that I wasn't able to win an event," Beachley said. "I came close a few times – I lost to Steph (Gilmore) in Peru in the last few seconds. I think a lot of my focus has been detracted by trying to run a business as well as the richest women's surfing event in history, and to go after the ASP Women's World Title, you need to make that your primary focus. I'm super motivated to perform this year, and I would love to ring the bell come the end of the contest."

Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), reigning ASP Women's World Champion and defending Rip Curl Women's Pro Champion, dispatched of 2008 ASP Women's World Tour rookie Karina Petroni (USA) this afternoon, opening with a solid 8.67 out of a possible 10 to put the pressure on the young Floridian in the inconsistent conditions.

"I was very happy to get that wave under my belt early as there haven't been too many coming through out there," Gilmore said. "I guess I didn't feel like I did a whole lot to merit that kind of a score, but I was pleased when I heard it."

Jessi Miley-Dyer (AUS), who was absent from the season opener on the Gold Coast of Australia due to injury, looks to be back in fine form at Bells Beach, posting a solid 14.67 out of a possible 20, advancing through to the Quarterfinals.

"I was really pleased to get an 8.17 in that heat as there haven't been too many good waves coming through the bowl today," Miley-Dyer said. "I've only been surfing for about a week since the injury so to get through to the Quarterfinals and post a solid score is a real confidence boost."

Miley-Dyer will square off against current world No. 1 Sofia Mulanovich (PER) in Quarterfinal 3 when competition resumes.

When Rip Curl Women's Pro competition recommences, Samantha Cornish (AUS) and Layne Beachley (AUS) will begin Quarterfinal action with the opening heat.

Event organizers will reconvene tomorrow morning at 7:30am to determine the official call for the day.

Both the Rip Curl Pro and the Rip Curl Women's Pro will be webcast LIVE via www.ASPWorldTour.com

Rip Curl Women's Pro pres. by Ford Fiesta Round 3 Results
Heat 1: Samantha Cornish 12.76 def. Nicola Atherton 8.83
Heat 2: Layne Beachley 16.96 def. Serena Brooke 6.83
Heat 3: Megan Abubo 12.33 vs. Rosanne Hodge 12.00
Heat 4: Stephanie Gilmore 13.84 def. Karina Petroni 7.26
Heat 5: Sofia Mulanovich 13.33 def. Melanie Redman-Carr 7.83
Heat 6: Jessi Miley-Dyer 14.67 def. Rebecca Woods 12.27
Heat 7: Amee Donohoe 10.97 def. Jacqueline Silva 10.33
Heat 8: Claire Bevilacqua 10.00 def. Silvana Lima 7.03

Rip Curl Women's Pro pres. by Ford Fiesta Quarterfinals Match-Ups
QF 1: Samantha Cornish v. Layne Beachley
QF 2: Megan Abubo v. Stephanie Gilmore
QF 3: Sofia Mulanovich v. Jessi Miley-Dyer
QF 4: Amee Donohoe v. Claire Bevilacqua