Home > Competition, WSL > Jordy Smith places fifth as Mick Fanning wins Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach in Australia

Jordy Smith places fifth as Mick Fanning wins Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach in Australia

April 9th, 2015
Jordy Smith (ZAF) in action during his quarterfinal defeat at the hands of eventual winner Mick Fanning in the quarterfinals of the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach in Australia on Thursday  Image: © WSL / Cestari

Jordy Smith (ZAF) in action during his quarterfinal defeat at the hands of eventual winner Mick Fanning in the quarterfinals of the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach in Australia on Thursday  Image: © WSL / Cestari

South African Jordy Smith placed fifth in the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach after advancing to the Quarterfinals at the second stop on the 2015 Samsung Galaxy WSL Championship Tour (CT) before being eliminated by eventual winner Mick Fanning (AUS) in wind affected 1.5 metre waves earlier today.

The lanky former Durbanite who now resides in San Clemente, California, fell behind early in the 30 minute encounter before punctuating a long ride with a series of explosive, fins free manoeuvres. He earned an excellent 8.33 out of 10 but still needed a near perfect 9.44 to advance to the Semifinals when the heat ended,

Smith’s haul of 5 200 points moved him up four places to No. 5 on the WSL CT rankings with two of the 11events on the 2015 schedule now completed.

Fanning went on to defeat Nat Young (USA) in the Semis and then beat Adriano de Souza (BRA) in the closest Final in Championship Tour history. The pair tied on 15.27 points each but Fanning got the nod on a count-back to the highest single ride which the Australian clinched 8.17 vs. 7.57

Fanning is now tied with Kelly Slater (USA) and Mark Richards (AUS) with four Bells Beach wins each. He won his first in 2001 as a wildcard and then again in 2012 and 2014. The three-time World Champion also ties with Andy Irons (HAW), with both having 20 CT event wins.

“I’d never put myself in a category with MR (Mark Richards), Kelly Slater and Andy Irons,” said Fanning. “Those guys are my heroes. MR is a god, Kelly is a king and Andy is forever, it’s awesome.”

The first ever tiebreak Final puts Fanning on a path to his fourth World Title and he will take the gold leader jersey going into the third event on the Samsung Galaxy World Surf League (WSL) Championship Tour (CT) in Margaret River. Today’s match-up was the pair’s tenth in CT history, including three at Bells Beach, and Fanning has taken seven wins while De Souza has three.

“Today is the first time a CT Final has ever been tied, which is radical. As elating as the win is for me I know it’s heartbreaking for Adriano,” continued Fanning. “He’s such a top bloke and he throws his heart into everything and he trains so hard. He’s the elder statesman for the Brazilian storm and he does an impeccable job at leading them.”

“It’s a dream come true to make a Final here at Bells,” said De Souza who moved up to third place on the WSL rankings. “This is such an amazing place for me and it was so special to put my name on this trophy in 2013. Every time I come here it’s a special experience.”

Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Final Results:
1: Mick Fanning (AUS) – 15.27 (Fanning wins with the heat’s highest single-wave score, 8.17)
2: Adriano de Souza (BRA) – 15.27

Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Semifinal Results:
SF 1: Adriano de Souza (BRA) 14.84 def. Josh Kerr (AUS) 9.87
SF 2: Mick Fanning (AUS) 16.70 def. Nat Young (USA) 14.23

Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Quarterfinal Results:
QF 1: Adriano de Souza (BRA) 11.60 def. Gabriel Medina (BRA) 8.33
QF 2: Josh Kerr (AUS) 13.00 def. Owen Wright (AUS) 7.93
QF 3: Mick Fanning (AUS) 17.76 def. Jordy Smith (ZAF) 15.60
QF 4: Nat Young (USA) 15.10 def. Filipe Toledo (BRA) 13.86

WSL Championship Tour Rankings (After event #2 – Rip Curl Bells Beach Pro)
1 Mick Fanning (AUS) 15200
1 Filipe Toledo (BRA) 15200
3 Adriano De Souza (BRA) 14500
4 Julian Wilson (AUS) 9750
5 Jordy Smith (ZAF) 9200
6 Josh Kerr (AUS) 8250
6 Nat Young (USA) 8250
8 Miguel Pupo (BRA) 7000

The Rip Curl Women’s Pro Bells Beach will likely run tomorrow (Thursday night SA time) and see a champion crowned.

South Africa’s Bianca Buitendag (Victoria Bay) was eliminated in Round 3 earlier this week, finishing equal ninth overall.

Event organisers will reconvene at 6:30 a.m. tomorrow morning (10.30pm SA time) to assess conditions and make the next call.

Rip Curl Women’s Pro Bells Beach Quarterfinal Match-ups:
Heat 1: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) vs. Lakey Peterson (USA)
Heat 2: Carissa Moore (HAW) vs. Johanne Defay (FRA)
Heat 3: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) vs. Tyler Wright (AUS)
Heat 4: Coco Ho (HAW) vs. Courtney Conlogue (USA)

ENDS

About the World Surf League
The World Surf League (WSL) organizes the annual tour of professional surf competitions and broadcasts each event live at WorldSurfLeague.com where you can experience the athleticism, drama and adventure of competitive surfing — anywhere and anytime it’s on. The WSL sanctions and operates the following tours: the Junior Tour, Longboard Tour, the Qualifying Series (QS), the Big Wave Tour and the crown jewel of the sport, the WSL Championship Tour (CT) which determines the sport’s undisputed world champions. The organization is headquartered in Santa Monica, California with Commercial Offices in New York. The offices are supported by regional centers in Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, Hawaii, North America and South America.

Issued on behalf of:

WSL Africa
Contact: Colin Fitch – Operations Manager
Tel: 021 534 5738
Email: cfitch@worldsurfleague.com

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