Jordy Smith at Bells Beach

The waves peaked at six feet on day one at Bells Beach which yielded a mixed bag of results. Taj Burrow and Jordy Smith both finished third in their respective heats. Other surprise third place finishers in the first round were Julian Wilson and Bede Durbidge. Still at this early stage of the game it’s a minor setback, with the contest still wide open. A great result from Mick Fanning saw him win through to the third round by beating Tiago Pires and Gabriel Medina, which will see him avoiding the round two match-ups.

“I’m stoked to get a good start,” Fanning said of his result. “It’s been 10 years since I won here as I wildcard, I got close last year but Kelly Slater got me in the final. You want to win every event, but being the 50th Anniversary and so much history at this event, it’s like the Wimbledon of surfing, it’s a hard one to win but it’s the one everyone wants.”

It’s the 50th Anniversary of competition surfing at Bells Beach, and it is by far one of the most popular of the stops on the world tour. While the right-handers of Bells would appear to favour the natural-footers, surfers like Mark Occhilupo have also excelled with their right-foot forward at the break. Jordy and Julian, both natural-footers, will get their second chance when the event commences. Jordy will come up against local surfer Adam Robertson in the first heat of round two, while Julian is matched-up against Chris Davidson in heat 9. Last year saw Jordy achieve a solid fifth place in the event, which saw him solidify his position on the World Tour ratings. He remained in the top two for the rest of the year, eventually finishing second.

For more results, video and photos from the event, and a live feed, check out the event website here.


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