NewsOi Rio ProSally Fitzgibbons

Olympic Race: From Rio to Tokyo

In the city that hosted the 2016 Olympics, the Oi Rio Pro provided another sign post to the makeup of the athletes that will compete in the Tokyo 2020 Games. Ten men and eight women will be selected to compete in surfing's debut at the Olympics in just over 12 months time based on the final 2019 Championship Tour rankings.

However a maximum of two surfers from any one nation can compete in each division. That has the effect of creating mini-leagues, where the CT surfers will battle to finish as one of the top two ranked surfers from their nation. Here we check in after Brazil to see who would be selected based on the current Jeep Leaderboard.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - JUNE 22: 11-time WSL Champion Kelly Slater of the United States is eliminated from the 2019 Oi Rio Pro with an equal 9th finish after placing second in Heat 1 of Round 4 at Barinha, Saquarema on June 22, 2019 in Rio de Janeiro, Br Kelly Slater. Hands up if you want to go to the Olympics. WSL / Damien Poullenot

Men's Team USA
With five of the 11 events completed, Jeep Leader John John Florence and World No. 2 Kolohe Andino have a solid lock on Olympic qualification. However if Florence's knee injury leads to a prolonged absence, his spot might become available. That would be eagerly grabbed by the ever-improving Kelly Slater (World No. 7) with Conner Coffin and Seth Moniz still right in the mix.

Women's Team USA
After Rio, the race for the two USA spots remains as tight as ever. As it stands, Carissa Moore and Courtney Conlogue would be the surfers selected. However Caroline Marks and Lakey Peterson, currently on equal points sharing the World No. 5 rank, are breathing down their necks.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - JUNE 22: Two-time WSL Champion John John Florence of Hawaii wearing the yellow Jeap Leaders jersey advances to the quarter finals of the 2019 Oi Rio Pro after winning Heat 5 of Round 4 at Barinha, Saquarema on June 22, 2019 in Rio John John Florence WSL / Thiago Diz

Men's Team Brazil
Filipe Toledo's pyrotechnics moved him up to World No. 3 and into Brazil's first qualifying spot. Gabriel Medina also jumped four places, but not enough to overtake Italo Ferreira. From the start it seemed inevitable that those three surfers would be fighting for the two spots in Tokyo and with the next Brazilian Michael Rodrigues ranked as the World No. 16, that hasn't changed.

Women's Team Brazil
Tatiana Weston-Webb's recent form has seen her Olympic selection become almost a certainty. Silvana Lima too would make the team, although as World No. 14 her place is less secure. She did however miss the first two CT events due to injury and you would expect her to cement her place as the year progresses.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - JUNE 19: (left-right) Tatiana Weston-Webb and Silvana Lima, both of Brazil present at the 2019 Oi Rio Pro Press Session in Saquarema on June 19, 2019 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.(Photo by Damien Poullenot/WSL via Getty Images) Tatiana Weston-Webb and Silvana Lima would, right now, be selected to represent Brazil in Tokyo. WSL / Damien Poullenot

Men's Team Australia
Australia on the men's side is having the worst representation at the elite level of the sport in its history as the retirements of Taj Burrow, Mick Fanning and Joel Parkinson hit home. After a slow start however Julian Wilson has climbed into the top 10 and, as it stands, would be joined by Ryan Callinan in Tokyo. It is only World No. 14 Wade Carmichael and Owen Wright (World No. 17) that are in any position to press those two for Olympic inclusion.

Women's Team Australia
It is more cut and dry for the Aussies with Jeep Leader Sally Fitzgibbons and 7x World Champion Stephanie Gilmore looking like certainties for selection. That's because the next closest Australian, Bronte Macaulay, is 15,000 points behind Gilmore. Barring injury, the veterans will be vying for a medal in Tokyo 2020.

Sally Fitzgibbons Wins Oi Rio Pro, Takes Jeep Leader Jersey
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The Australian's love affair with Brazil continues as she wins the Oi Rio Pro over Carissa Moore in the Final.

Men's Team France
Michel Bourez and Jeremy Flores, the Worlds No. 12 and 15 respectively, would round out the ten athletes selected for Tokyo. They can't however rest easy, with Joan Duru still within striking distance. Again, three doesn't go into two and this equation probably won't be settled until the end of the year.

The Rest Of The World
The rookie Costa Rican Brisa Hennessy has been a revelation and would be representing her country based on current ratings. The same goes for the Frenchwoman Johanne Defay. Elsewhere there is only New Zealand's Paige Hareb who is still in with a chance. With the cut-off ranking currently at World No. 14 she would need only one big result to get herself one of the eight CT spots available.

(Photo by Matt Dunbar/WSL via Getty Images) Kanoa Igarashi WSL / Matt Dunbar

Rest Of The World
Jordy Smith and Kanoa Igarashi, both entrenched in the top five, are almost guaranteed a starting spot in Tokyo, given they are their nation's sole reps on the CT. Other sole reps include Italian Leo Fioravanti, Kiwi Ricardo Christie and Frederico Morais from Portugal. With Jeremy Flores, the current World No. 15, as the current cut-off point for selection, those surfers will all need to make serious ground to come into the reckoning for a spot in Tokyo.

Men's CT Olympic Selection After Oi Rio Pro
John John Florence, Kolohe Andino, Filipe Toledo, Jordy Smith, Kanoa Igarashi, Julian Wilson, Ryan Callinan, Michel Bourez, Jeremy Flores.

Women's CT Olympic Selections After Oi Rio Pro
Sally Fitzgibbons, Carissa Moore, Steph Gilmore, Courtney Conlogue, Tatiana Weston-Webb, Brisa Hennessy, Johanne Defay, Silvana Lima

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