Eliminations Begin in Picture-Perfect Conditions at Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic Presented by Rip Curl

Published on 31/08/2023

BELLS BEACH, Torquay, Victoria / Australia (Thursday, August 31, 2023) – Beautiful, clean two-to-three foot lines of swell greeted competitors for the second day of competition of the Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic Presented by Rip Curl. The conditions delivered the ideal canvas for the world’s best longboarders to exhibit their style as the Elimination Rounds for both Men’s and Women’s divisions were completed.

Today’s draw showcased the freshness of the 2023 World Surf League (WSL) Longboard Tour (LT), with all 16 heats, 8 women’s and 8 men’s, featuring first-time LT matchups, many including veterans and rookies going head-to-head. For the second day running experience paid off however, with the long-time tour competitors winning the majority of the matchups.

Standout performances came from Tony Silvagni (USA), Chloe Calmon (BRA), Rogelio Jr Esquievel (PHI), Avalon Gall (USA), Richie Cravey (USA) and Tully White (AUS).

Silvagni came out firing in the first heat of the men’s Elimination Round, venting his frustrations of being the only top-seeded surfer to lose his Opening Round heat by claiming the highest heat total of the event so far, 15.33 (out of a possible 20).

“I’m just so happy to make it through that heat,” Silvagni said. “I dusted off the cobwebs last night, went for a freesurf after I lost in my first heat. I knew that I could do it, I just stayed strong. This is an incredible, iconic break that we’re just so lucky to be surfing at.”

Another surfer who was feeling the pressure of the Elimination Round was Huntington Beach Longboard Classic semifinalist Rogelio Jr Esquievel (PHI). Despite it being his rookie season, Esquievel’s arrival on tour has already shaken things up and expectation is high for another decent result here in Australia, though adapting to the cold is proving to be a challenge for the Filipino.

“It feels different here because the weather is more colder and the water is so freezing, especially for me because I’m from Philippines, it’s hot there,” Esquievel said. “I was just putting what I can do, just do some nose-rides at the beginning and put everything on the middle section because there’s more cleaner section right there. It’s so nice to see some Filipinos here. They are supporting and they are so proud of me. It was really nice for me and it feels more comfortable.”

While many heats today were cut and dry, some dramatic moments defined the women’s Elimination Round. Crystal Hulett (RSA) kept Zoe Grospiron (FRA) on her toes in Heat 7 before Grospiron found a score in the final moments. A last second interference then deprived Hulett of her lowest scoring wave, which proved to be an emotional turnaround for the South African. It also came down to the wire for Keani Canullo (HAW) who lost control of Heat 6 against Luana Soares (BRA) in the dying seconds, before then reclaiming the win with a buzzer beater.

Avalon Gall (USA) claimed the day’s first excellent score, an 8.17 (out of a possible 10) for an extended hang-ten combined with multiple long hang-five’s and stunning footwork.

Competing in her sixth season on tour, Gall has had plenty of experience since her first appearance on the LT in 2018 at the age of 15. A new approach is lightening the load for the 20-year-old, who found the highest heat total of the women’s division so far, 14.84 (out of a possible 20), to progress ahead of Roisin Carolan (AUS) in Elimination Round Heat 4.

“I’m just trying to have more fun with it and not take everything so seriously,” Gall said. “Honestly I’m having a way better time and I feel like I’m surfing better because of it. I got to surf out here when it was bigger, before the event started and it was insane just being here and being able to surf pumping Bells. And now that the wind is not as bad as yesterday it’s still super fun and, like, perfect logging waves.”

It was a slow, tense heat that provided Maya Glasenapp of Reunion Island with her first LT heat win. Tour veteran Maria Fernanda Reyes (PER) held the highest wave score of the exchange but was unable to find a backup, and Glasenapp’s classic style shone through with clean footwork and critical nose-rides on each of her waves. The rookie has been enjoying every minute of her experience on tour.

“It’s really, really nice,” Glasenapp said. “I’ve never done such a big competition outside of France, this is the first time. So I’m really happy and excited and just taking everything I can take out of it.”

For more of today’s highlights, results and information from the Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.

The next call for competition will be tomorrow, Friday, September 1, at 7:15am AEST for a potential 7:35am start.

Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic Presented by Rip Curl Women’s Elimination Round Results:
HEAT 1: Sophia Culhane (HAW) 12.76 DEF. Kaede Inoue (JPN) 7.84
HEAT 2: Maya Glasenapp (REU) 7.50 DEF. Maria Fernanda Reyes (PER) 6.87
HEAT 3: Chloe Calmon (BRA) 13.67 DEF. Lucy Small (AUS) 8.67
HEAT 4: Avalon Gall (USA) 14.84 DEF. Roisin Carolan (AUS) 9.86
HEAT 5: Tully White (AUS) 13.73 DEF. Molly Powell (AUS) 5.43
HEAT 6: Keani Canullo (HAW) 10.40 DEF. Luana Soares (BRA) 10.07
HEAT 7: Zoe Grospiron (FRA) 9.57 DEF. Crystal Hulett (RSA) 5.50
HEAT 8: Kirra Molnar (AUS) 10.87 DEF. Liv Stokes (CAN) 10.53

Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic Presented by Rip Curl Men’s Elimination Round Results:
HEAT 1: Tony Silvagni (USA) 15.33 DEF. Jack Tyro (NZL) 10.00
HEAT 2: Cole Robbins (USA) 13.00 DEF. Chase Lieder (USA) 10.87
HEAT 3: Rogelio Jr Esquievel (PHL) 13.17 DEF. Samuel Dunton (AUS) 10.23
HEAT 4: Steven Sawyer (RSA) 12.17 DEF. Nicolás Andrade (ESP) 7.67
HEAT 5: Kevin Skvarna (USA) 9.17 DEF. Matias Maturano (PER) 8.90
HEAT 6: Kaimana Takayama (USA) 11.20 DEF. Max Weston (AUS) 10.73
HEAT 7: Richie Cravey (USA) 13.17 DEF. Ben Considine (AUS) 10.84
HEAT 8: Kai Ellice-Flint (AUS) 11.66 DEF. John Michael Van Hohenstein (HAW) 10.50

Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic Presented by Rip Curl Women’s Round of 16 Matchups:
HEAT 1: Honolua Blomfield (HAW) vs. Maya Glasenapp (REU)
HEAT 2: Mason Schremmer (USA) vs. Zoe Grospiron (FRA)
HEAT 3: Soleil Errico (USA) vs. Keani Canullo (HAW)
HEAT 4: Rachael Tilly (USA) vs. Avalon Gall (USA)
HEAT 5: Kelis Kaleopaa (HAW) vs. Natsumi Taoka (JPN)
HEAT 6: Alice Lemoigne (FRA) vs. Tully White (AUS)
HEAT 7: Sophia Culhane (HAW) vs. Kirra Molnar (AUS)
HEAT 8: Chloe Calmon (BRA) vs. Kaitlin Mikkelsen (USA)

Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic Presented by Rip Curl Men’s Round of 16 Matchups:
HEAT 1: Taylor Jensen (USA) vs. Kai Ellice-Flint (AUS)
HEAT 2: Taka Inoue (JPN) vs. Kevin Skvarna (USA)
HEAT 3: Tony Silvagni (USA) vs. Kaimana Takayama (USA)
HEAT 4: Kai Sallas (HAW) vs. Richie Cravey (USA)
HEAT 5: Kaniela Stewart (HAW) vs. Landen Smales (AUS)
HEAT 6: Edouard Delpero (FRA) vs. Rogelio Jr Esquievel (PHL)
HEAT 7: Declan Wyton (AUS) vs. Steven Sawyer (RSA)
HEAT 8: Ben Skinner (GBR) vs. Cole Robbins (USA)

Watch LIVE: Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic Presented by Rip Curl

The Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic holds a competition window from Wednesday, August 30, through Saturday, September 2, 2023. Once called on, the competition will be broadcast LIVE on WorldSurfLeague.com, the WSL’s YouTube channel, and the free WSL app.

The 2023 Bioglan Bells Beach Longboard Classic presented by Rip Curl is proudly supported by Bioglan, Visit Victoria, Surf Coast Shire, GWM, and Rip Curl.

For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.

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