For many years now, women have been taking part in surfing, dedicating themselves fully to it professionally and participating in all official competitions, just like the boys. In this sense, surfing is one of the sports that has made history in terms of gender equality.
In 2019, the WSL (World Surf League) set an unprecedented milestone by confirming that the same prize money would be offered to both the male and female winner, making it arguably the first sport to apply the same distinctions and treat athletes the same regardless of gender.
Before starting with the ranking, we wanted to highlight the generation of young surfers that are coming, both male and female, and many of them do not exceed 25 years old and are in the top positions of their respective championships.
The current ranking of the top 10 women surfers after 4/10 events of this 2023 season is as follows.
1. Molly Picklum (Australia)
The best surfer currently occupying the number 1 ranking is Molly Picklum, an astrualian of only 20 years of age. This is her second year on the Women's Championship Tour and today she is at number 1, several points clear of the second.
After a debut season last year in which he failed to qualify for the next part of the season, competing in only 5 events, this year he has started in great form, with two 5th places, a 2nd place and a win at the Hurley Pro Sunset Beach.
2. Tyler Wright (Australia)
Another Australian in the top, being the most represented country in this ranking of the top 10 women surfers in the world. Tyler Wright is a much more experienced 29 year old. It is the thirteenth time she participates in the Championship Tour.
In 2011 at the age of 17 she was awarded the rookie of the year trophy in her second year of competition on the Women's Championship Tour.
Within this competition, which after all is the one that names the best at the end of the season, she has won quite a few victories throughout his career.
15 victories in total, being the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach one of his favorite tournaments, in which he has chained two consecutive victories, in 2022 and 2023.
In addition, in 2016 and 2017 she finished the entire season as number 1 in the world. Will she manage to reach the top this year?
Carissa Moore (Hawaii)
The Hawaiian athlete is the second oldest in the ranking, only behind the famous Stephanie Gilmore. With an enviable track record, Carissa Moore was awarded rookie of the year in her first year of competition (2010). This year she is ranked number 3 due to her victory in the Billabong Pro Pipeline.
She is the most successful Hawaiian surfer in history.
The Hawaiian surfer is one of the top women surfers in history due to her 4 world titles won in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2019. To this, we must add three championships in the Qualifying Series.
In 2013 she was included into the surfing hall of fame, at the same age as legend Stephanie Gilmore.
She has also made history on a couple of occasions. Thanks to her 2011 world title, Carissa Moore was and still is the youngest surfer to win a world title.
Another achievement that the Hawaiian can boast is having won the first gold in the women's surfing competition at the Olympic Games, a competition that was premiered in Tokyo in 2021.
4. Caitlin Simmers (United States)
The American is the youngest female surfer in the championship, with a difference of 7 months with respect to the Hawaiian Bettylou Sakura Johnson. This is the second year that she is competing in the Championship Tour, although it could have been the third year since last year (2022) she resigned from the Tour despite having qualified.
Despite her young age (she has not yet turned 18) this year in Portugal she has achieved her first Championship victory in the MEO Rip Curl Pro. This victory currently keeps her at number 4.
5. Tatiana Weston-Webb (Brazil)
The 26-year-old Hawaiian who recently changed her nationality to Brazilian debuted on the Championship Tour as an 18-year-old in 2014.
In 2015 she won the rookie of the year trophy. She has achieved 4 first places in different championships of the Championship and 2 in the Qualifying Series.
In 2021 she participated in the Tokyo Olympic Games representing Brazil.
His best position in the final WSL ranking was in 2016 when he achieved a 4th place. She is currently 5th, will she manage this year to beat her personal record?
6. Caroline Marks (United States)
The 21-year-old American surfer, who debuted at the age of 15, is the youngest female surfer to qualify for the Championship Tour. Despite her youth, she has experience in the competition, as she has participated in up to 6 editions counting the current one, and achieving 3 victories and another 3 victories in the Qualifying.
In 2018 she was awarded Rookie of the Year and finished 7th in the women's world surfing ranking.
The following year, she achieved a very unexpected second place, being the second best female surfer in the world, only behind her idol Carissa Moore.
Thanks to this second place, she qualified, representing the USA, for the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
7. Gabriela Bryan (Hawaii)
The 21-year-old Hawaiian is participating for the second time in the Championship Tour. Although since 2019 she debuted participating in one of the events, specifically in the Freshwater Pro in which she finished ninth.
Her next goal and dream is to be able to participate in the Paris Olympics in 2024. She has not yet achieved any victory in the Championship Tour but thanks to a 5th and 2nd place of these 4 championships have positioned her to a seventh place.
8. Bettylou Sakura Johnson (Hawaii)
As we mentioned, the youngest along with Caitlin Simmers, who, unlike the American, Bettylou has turned 18 years old.
The Hawaiian told in an interview that her best moment professionally speaking was when she was awarded the wildcard in 2020 and participated in the Fresh Water Pro at only 16 years old.
She has yet to win a victory in CT but she did win in the 2020 Qualifying Series, which allowed her to enter the Championship Tour in 2021 for the first time.
9. Stephanie Gilmore (Australia)
We could say that the 35-year-old Australian is the best female surfer in history, as she holds the most world titles, 8 to be precise.
Stephanie Gilmore won the world surfing title in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2012, 2014, 2018 and 2022 and is the most female winner in history.
In addition, she is the only surfer to have won the world title in her first year as a rookie, being the first surfer in history to do so in both the men's and women's categories, being rookie and world champion simultaneously.
At that time, she was the youngest to achieve it at the age of 19. The following year that milestone was dethroned by Carissa Moore, who won the world title at the age of 18 years and 11 and a half months. Not only was it enough for her to win her first year, but she did it 4 more times in a row.
She is the last world champion, as she retained her title last year at the age of 34, beating Carissa Moore, her "arch rival". In addition, she has the highest number of victories in the WSL Championship Tour with 34 victories throughout all the editions disputed and for all this she is part of the surfing hall of fame, being the youngest to be included at that time.
10. Isabella Nichols (Australia)
The last Australian in the top 10. Isabella Nichols is 25 years old and this is her third year in the Championship Tour, although she also participated in previous editions as a wildcard or by substitution.
She could access as wildcard or substitution because since she was 16 years old she has been participating in the Qualifying Series and she has won 3 times in the different editions in which she has participated.
In 2016 at the age of 18 she became world champion on the Women's Junior Tour. Last year, 2022, at the Margaret River Pro, she achieved her first victory in the CT.
That victory in the 5th race allowed her to pass the mid-season cut and compete until the end of the season.
Although she did not reach the final, as only the top 5 are in contention, she finished in tenth place, but she was fourth last year. We will see how she evolves this season.
This ranking represents the best current women surfers, according to the World Surf League. However, 4 events of 10 have been disputed, so this can change a lot throughout the competition.
In august, when the finals will be disputed, we will know the world champion and we will know how the final ranking is.
Follow the news on our website and our social networks as we will be updating these positions as the next events are played.