By Lisa Flueckiger, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Round 3 of the Oi Rio Pro surf competition held at Barra da Tijuca’s Postinho on Friday, May 15th didn’t bring much luck to this season’s favorite riders. Together with current World champion Gabriel Medina, surf veteran Kelly Slater and last tour stop’s champion Adriano de Souza were eliminated, while John John Florence and Mick Fanning didn’t pass Round 5.
John John Florence, one of surfing’s best, was eliminated from the Oi Rio Pro championship, after Round 5. The Hawaiian surfer had to take some heat in Round 4 that took place right after Round 3 on Friday, May 15th and therefore had to go over Round 5, which he lost against Brazilian Italo Ferreira.
Also, still in the competition are fellow Brazilians Felipe Toledo, who had won the first stop on the tour this year and got a straight ten in Round 4, and Jadson Andre. Both Brazilian riders amazed the crowds in the first heat of Round 4 and directly qualified for the Quarterfinals.
Also directly qualified for the Quarterfinals after Round 3 were the Australians Josh Kerr and Matt Wilkinson. Brazilian world champion Gabriel Medina, as well as Kelly Slater and Adriano de Souza didn’t survive the third round.
Tour stop number 2 winner Mick Fanning qualified for Round 4, but then had to go over the fifth round as well, after losing his fourth round heat to Josh Kerr. However, Fanning then lost the final head-to-head battle of the day against Owen Wright, while Bede Durbridge qualified against Keanu Asing.
In the women’s competition so far only the first round has been carried out, as both competitions had to sit out on Thursday, May 14th. With the men’s Round 3 and 4 both disputed on Friday, the women’s next call is 7AM on Saturday morning.
In Round 1, last year’s champion Sally Fitzgibbons, as well as fellow favorites Carissa Moore and Courtney Conlogue all won their heats, directly qualifying for Round 3.