John John on his way to his perfect 10-point ride at Bells yesterday. Photo: ASP
Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach ran through Rounds 3 and 4 yesterday, reducing the field to just 12.
After a disappointing performance at Margaret River, Taj was back on lethal form taking out the first heat of Round 4 with a series of fins-free turns and cutbacks at Rincon.
“I love Bells, it feels great to be through to the quarter finals,” said Taj. “There are some really good waves at home in WA right now, but I wouldn’t be anywhere else right now. The waves here have been really good and I’ve managed to get on a bit of a roll that hopefully I can keep going”.
In the most highly anticipated matchup of the day, John John Florence’s round 4 heat against Kelly and Gabriel Medina was a cracker. Although Kelly got off to an early lead with a powerhouse layback gouge that netted him the first excellent scoring ride of the heat, John John ended up taking the win with a monster front-side 360 arial on the opening section of Rincon that earned him the first perfect 10 of the event.
“It feels so good to win and I’m really happy. I was pretty nervous going into the heat, it was scary to come up against Kelly and Gabriel,” said John John. “I got that first wave and forgot about the nerves. I took off, I saw the section coming and just flew to the air, the wind caught and spun me around perfectly. I’m so happy to be making some heats now and to be in the quarter finals.”
Another event favourites Joel Parkinson, Jordy Smith and Owen Wright found themselves in another hard-fought Round 4 match up, Parko eventually coming out with a ticket straight into the quarters. Jordy and Owen Wright moving through to Round 5.
“In most of the events I’ve surfed so far I’ve taken a while to get into the rhythm, but I love the Bell and I’m three Heats away from it,” said Parko. “Three more wins, six more waves, I’m just going to keep it simple.”
Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Round 5 Match-ups:
Heat 1: Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Gabriel Medina (BRA)
Heat 2: Kelly Slater (USA) vs. Adam Melling (AUS)
Heat 3: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Julian Wilson (AUS)
Heat 4: Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) vs. Owen Wright (AUS)
Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Round 4 Results:
Heat 1: Taj Burrow (AUS) 15.57, Adriano de Souza (BRA) 12.10, Adam Melling (AUS) 10.90
Heat 2: John John Florence (HAW) 18.00, Kelly Slater (USA) 16.53, Gabriel Medina (BRA) 11.17
Heat 3: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 16.66, Jordy Smith (ZAF) 15.00, Owen Wright (AUS) 12.20
Heat 4: Mick Fanning (AUS) 16.34, Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) 12.17, Julian Wilson (AUS) 10.54
Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Round 3 Results:
Heat 1: Taj Burrow (AUS) 12.90 def Mitch Crews (AUS) 10.84
Heat 2: Adriano de Souza (BRA) 11.20 def. Filipe Toledo (BRA) 10.74
Heat 3: Adam Melling (AUS) 15.56 def. Josh Kerr (AUS) 12.60
Heat 4: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 17.00 vs. Bede Durbidge (AUS) 15.13
Heat 5: John John Florence (HAW) 15.83 def. Kai Otton (AUS) 15.67
Heat 6: Kelly Slater (USA) 15.53 def. Glenn Hall (IRL) 14.40
Heat 7: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 15.10 def. Aritz Aranburu (ESP) 10.90
Heat 8: Owen Wright (AUS) 13.43 def. C.J. Hobgood (USA) 10.83
Heat 9: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 17.44 def. Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 15.50
Heat 10: Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) 12.66 def. Nat Young (USA) 12.43
Heat 11: Julian Wilson (AUS) 17.03 def. Miguel Pupo (BRA) 9.34
Heat 12: Mick Fanning (AUS) 16.94 vs. Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 10.50