THE world’s best surfers are hoping promising swell for the opening day of the Margaret River Pro comes through, as the event prepares to kick off on Wednesday morning.
There are three competition venues at the iconic surfing spot: Margaret River Main Break, the event’s primary site, as well as back-up sites, The Box and North Point.
The first call will be tomorrow morning at 7:10 a.m. AWST (9.10am AEST) for a possible start at Main Break 20 minutes later.
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Fresh off her victory in Bali, Australia superstar and Jeep Leader Stephanie Gilmore hopes this year will be hers at the Margaret River Pro.
“West is best because, I mean, it’s beautiful,” Gilmore said.
“Look around at the coastline, the scenery, the surf, the landscape, the food – it’s all amazing. It’s such a crispy and fresh place to come and rejuvenate and get adventurous looking for waves.
“Winning in Bali was great for a number of reasons but mainly because I’m back leading the rankings, which is huge for my confidence. I lost my lead after a few average results at the first two events so I’m really happy to be back on top and will hopefully hold onto that spot for as long as I can.”
Western Australian local Bronte Macaulay is also hoping to carry her momentum from Bali, where she bagged her best result of 2019 with a 5th place finish.
“This event means a lot to me because I’ve been coming to watch it since I was at school and we’d come here on excursions,” Macaulay said.
“I know it also means so much to all of the locals, especially the groms. I surfed with a few local girls this morning and they were all frothing for the Rising Tides event and were so excited they couldn’t sleep last night, so I know it means so much to everyone around here. We really are so lucky to call this place home.
“It’s such a crazy, rugged coastline with all of these different types of waves and fresh clean water. Everyone that lives in the small town is so happy because of what we have. I’ve had a few really heartbreakingly close heats this year, but I feel like I’m continuing to learn and improve which is great.”
Margaret River Pro Women’s Seeding Round (Round 1) Matchups:
Heat 1: Caroline Marks (USA) vs. Johanne Defay (FRA) vs. Paige Hareb (NZL)
Heat 2: Carissa Moore (HAW) vs. Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) vs. Keely Andrew (AUS)
Heat 3: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) vs. Coco Ho (HAW) vs. Mia McCarthy (AUS)
Heat 4: Courtney Conlogue (USA) vs. Brisa Hennessy (CRI) vs. Macy Callaghan (AUS)
Heat 5: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) vs. Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) vs. Silvana Lima (BRA)
Heat 6: Malia Manuel (HAW) vs. Lakey Peterson (USA) vs. Bronte Macaulay (AUS)
Margaret River Pro Men’s Seeding Round (Round 1) Matchups:
Heat 1: John John Florence (HAW) vs. Kelly Slater (USA) vs. Jadson Andre (BRA)
Heat 2: Kanoa Igarashi (JPN) vs. Yago Dora (BRA) vs. Soli Bailey (AUS)
Heat 3: Julian Wilson (AUS) vs. Peterson Crisanto (BRA) vs. Caio Ibelli (BRA)
Heat 4: Italo Ferreira (BRA) vs. Joan Duru (FRA) vs. Frederico Morais (PRT)
Heat 5: Gabriel Medina (BRA) vs. Deivid Silva (BRA), Jacob Willcox (AUS)
Heat 6: Filipe Toledo (BRA) vs. Sebastian Zietz (HAW), Jack Robinson (AUS)
Heat 7: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Adrian Buchan (AUS) vs. Ricardo Christie (NZL)
Heat 8: Kolohe Andino (USA) vs. Seth Moniz (HAW) vs. Jack Freestone (AUS)
Heat 9: Conner Coffin (USA) vs. Ryan Callinan (AUS) vs. Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA)
Heat 10: Wade Carmichael (AUS) vs. Michael Rodrigues (BRA) vs. Ezekiel Lau (HAW)
Heat 11: Jeremy Flores (FRA) vs. Willian Cardoso (BRA) vs. Jesse Mendes (BRA)
Heat 12: Owen Wright (AUS) vs. Michel Bourez (FRA) vs. Griffin Colapinto (USA)