- Who: The top four female athletes poised to take home the 2022 Rip Curl Pro title
- What: The Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach women’s surfing competition
- When: This event will go from April 10 to April 20th, 2022
- Where: Bells Beach, Victoria, Australia
Held almost every World Surf League season, the Rip Curl Pro, formerly the Bells Beach Surf Classic, is the fourth event on the Women’s Championship Tour. While this was normally a pretty consistent stop on the WSL Tour in the 2010’s, the competition did not occur in 2020 and 2021 due to uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this will change this upcoming weekend when the best in the world clash at Bells Beach. Courtney Conlogue of the United States won the competition in 2019 and has won it three times in her career.
While Conlogue has had the most recent success of any current athlete in the field (she has won the competition the last three of four times it has been held), she is not favored to win in 2022. Below, see who MTS has as the main four candidates to keep an eye on at Bells Beach and who will take home the championship.
The No. 1 Contender: Carissa Moore (Odds: +300)
One of the most decorated surfers of all time, Moore is the reigning WSL Women’s World Tour Champion and is seeking her first title at the Rip Curl Pro since 2015. A five-time WSL World title-holder, the native of Honolulu, is one of the most recognized names in the sport. Moore is currently in fourth place in the women’s overall points standings and is coming off a third-place finish at the MEO Pro Portugal event back in early March. While she did have a disappointing ninth-place finish at the Hurley Pro Sunset Beach competition in February, Moore has shown she can rip off wins at any time.
The No. 2 Athlete: Stephanie Gilmore (Odds: +400)
Another great competitor in the surfing world, Gilmore has had a tough start to her season but is coming off a third-place finish at the last event. A seven-time WSL World Champion, she has won this competition an impressive four times and is comfortable competing on her native soil. Though Gilmore is one of the most respected athletes in her sport, she has not had a great start to the 2022 season. She finished in 17th place at the season-opening competition (the Billabong Pipeline Masters) and then in ninth place at the Hurley Pro Sunset Beach. This could be her chance to turn things around and capitalize on her third-place finish last month.
Third Ranked Contender: Tyler Wright (Odds: +500)
Wright is coming off a fifth-place finish at the MEO Pro Portugal and will be looking to string together some solid performances and get into the WSL top five standings. Another Australian, Wright won back-to-back WSL Women’s World Titles back in 2016-17. During her meteoric rise, she was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome after a bout with influenza A in 2018. Since then, she bounced back in 2020 to win the Tweed Coast Pro in New South Wales. As of this season, Wright is tied for sixth in the WSL women’s standings and is just outside of the top five.
The Final Contender: Tatiana Weston-Webb (Odds: +700)
Our final spotlight, Weston-Webb is coming off a first-place finish at the MEO Pro Portugal event and will be looking to build on this momentum at the Rip Curl. The win in Portugal was her third on the WCT circuit after she won the Boost Mobile Margaret River Pro in 2021. A Brazilian-American surfer based out of Kauai, she also competed in the 2020 Summer Olympics on behalf of Brazil. Weston-Webb is playing catch up this year though after falling from the No. 2 spot in the WSL rankings at the end of 2021 to 14th place in the current women’s standings.
Prediction: Another great surfing showcase, look for Moore to pick up her first win of the WSL season in Australia.
A couple more thoughts about placing your surfing bets
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