Day 2 of the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Presented by Bonsoy, Stop No. 4 on the World Surf League 2024 Championship Tour, has seen another massive day of action.

Competition moved to Winkipop, where there were semi-clean three-to-four-foot waves on offer. The second straight day of competition saw the completion of the women’s Elimination Round and Round of 16 as well as five heats of the men’s Round of 32 with mixed results for some of surfing’s biggest stars.

World No. 1 Picklum and Reigning Event Winner Wright Eliminated on Day 2

World No.1 Molly Picklum (AUS) will have to wait another year for her chance to ring the iconic Bell after she was taken down by 2024 CT Rookie Sawyer Lindblad (USA) in the Round of 16 at Winkipop. Picklum was hoping to find some form after falling into the Elimination Round and only just sneaking into the Round of 16, but Lindblad had other ideas, posting the equal highest heat total of the day, a 15.67 (out of a possible 20). Lindblad looked sharp on her backhand and has guaranteed her best result at the elite level as she looks to move above the Mid-season Cut line with a Quarterfinals berth.

“It feels really good; I was really fired up after my loss in Portugal, it felt good to know that I can get scores in the 7’s and 8’s so I came into this event really excited,” Lindblad said. “This is only my third time surfing Winkipop, and it’s such a sick wave. It reminds me of Trestles at home. I’m honestly just really happy to make it out of the Round of 16. I’m not really thinking about the Cut. This is my first year on Tour, and I don’t really feel that much pressure, to be honest. I just want to keep surfing and getting high scores.”

Local Trials winner Ellie Harrison (AUS) continued her charge through the draw, overcoming reigning two-time Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Winner Tyler Wright (AUS). Wright and Harrison went back and forth in the back-end of the heat, with the lead changing a number of times. With Wright leading on the buzzer, Harrison made it to the beach and waited for her last score, which was enough to get the lead and leave the two-time World Champion with an equal 9th-place finish.

“When I saw the heat draw come out, I was like ‘oh no’ – I look up to Tyler so much, she’s the nicest person in the water, gives me compliments, she’s such a cool girl,” Harrison said. “I went into that heat with the mentality that I’ve got nothing to lose. I tried to keep my cool, so I was just waiting for the perfect opportunity to find where the sets were coming in and try to get a big score. Then I got another one, and I wasn’t sure if it was going to be the score, but I was so glad I got through. It’s a dream come true surfing at Bells, walking out with all my family and friends cheering for me on, it’s something I’ve thought about every year, and now it’s real. It’s a little weird, I don’t know how to act.”

Caroline Marks Steals the Show at Winkipop

Reigning World Champion Caroline Marks (USA) was the standout performer of the Round of 16, posting the equal highest two-wave total of the women’s event to overcome an in-form Sophie McCulloch (AUS). Marks’ backhand looked on point at Winkipop, smashing massive critical turns to earn a two-wave total of 15.67 (out of a possible 20). Marks will take on Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) in the Quarterfinals when the competition resumes.

“That was really fun. I love surfing Winkipop. It’s a different wave, and I rode a different board, so it was cool to change things up,” Marks said. “You are always aware of what’s going on around you and who is dropping out of the draw, but I’m really trying to focus on myself. There hasn’t been a female goofy-footer win this event for so long, and I’d love to break that streak – this has always been an event I’d love to win with so many of my heroes having won it. There is a long way to go before I get close to that though.”

Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Presented by Bonsoy Women’s Elimination Round Results:
HEAT 1: Sophie McCulloch (AUS) 13.17 DEF. Molly Picklum (AUS) 11.50, India Robinson (AUS) 4.67
HEAT 2: Caitlin Simmers (USA) 12.04 DEF. Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) 11.23, Alyssa Spencer (USA) 10.56

Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Presented by Bonsoy Women’s Round of 16 Results:
HEAT 1: Johanne Defay (FRA) 15.46 DEF. Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 13.17
HEAT 2: Ellie Harrison (AUS) 13.73 DEF. Tyler Wright (AUS) 12.74
HEAT 3: Sawyer Lindblad (USA) 15.67 DEF. Molly Picklum (AUS) 11.74
HEAT 4: Brisa Hennessy (CRC) 12.74 DEF. Lakey Peterson (USA) 12.73
HEAT 5: Caroline Marks (USA) 15.67 DEF. Sophie McCulloch (AUS) 12.10
HEAT 6: Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) 11.97 DEF. Luana Silva (BRA) 11.67
HEAT 7: Caitlin Simmers (USA) 13.10 DEF. Isabella Nichols (AUS) 12.93
HEAT 8: Gabriela Bryan (HAW) 13.83 DEF. Bettylou Sakura Johnson (HAW) 12.04