Not surprisingly, Australia's Stephanie Gilmore was the standout performer on the first day of the season-opening Roxy Pro. Gilmore, 22, has won the world title in all three of her years on the World Tour, and her dominance is reminiscent of Kelly Slater's dominance early in his career on the men's tour (Slater once won five consecutive titles).
Her score of 17.37 in the best-two-waves format was the day's highest, as she prevailed over fellow Aussie Tyler Wright and Brazil's Bruna Schmitz, to advance directly to the third round.
Meanwhile, men's second-round action (involving non-winners during the first round) was underway at the time of this post. Australia's Taj Burrow, Florida's C.J. Hobgood and Santa Barbara's Bobby Martinez won their heats to make the third round. Thirteen elimination heats remained and among those striving to advance were three rookies from San Clemente, Calif.: Patrick and Tanner Gudauskas, and Nathan Yeomans.
Slater, a nine-time world champion, and defending world champion Mick Fanning were among first-round winners who advanced directly to the third round.A live webcast is available on the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast link.
-- Pete Thomas
Photo: Stephanie Gilmore in action during the first round of the Roxy Pro on Australia's Gold Coast. Credit: © ASP / CESTARI