Finals wait goes on for Stephanie Gilmore

A second consecutive lay day has been called for the World Surfing League Finals at Lower Trestles in California as the world's best wait to get started.

STEPHANIE GILMORE of Australia looks on during the women's qualifying round of the World Surf League Surf Ranch Pro in Lemoore, California.
STEPHANIE GILMORE of Australia looks on during the women's qualifying round of the World Surf League Surf Ranch Pro in Lemoore, California. Picture: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Stephanie Gilmore will have to wait at least another day to begin her against-the-odds bid for a record eighth world surfing title after the new-look WSL Finals were put on hold for a second day.

The next call on a start at the Lower Trestles break in California will be made on Saturday (Sunday AEST).

"We're looking forward at the forecast and it looks like we'll still have really good surf," said WSL official Jessi Miley-Dyer. "Sunday, Monday and Tuesday are looking super promising."

Gilmore is waiting to take on France's Johanne Defray in the opening clash of the women's event for the season's top five surfers.

But as fourth seed, she will need to go unbeaten through four matches to win the title while top seed Carissa Moore is already guaranteed a spot in the decider.

If she beats fifth seed Defray she will come up against third-seeded fellow Australian Sally Fitzgibbons in the second match, while second seed Tatiana Weston-Webb awaits the winner of that.

Gilmore is up for the challenge and relishes the venue where she has previously won a tour event and recorded a perfect 10 scoring ride.

"It's one of the most perfect waves in California, and essentially the world," Gilmore said.

"It's so rippable. It's such a great arena for competitive surfing. If we have a great forecast then I can't think of a better way to finish the year."

Australia's Morgan Cibilic faces the same challenge as Gilmore in the men's event, needing to win four straight matches as he is seeded fifth and up against fourth seed Connor Coffin in the opening men's match.

Men's competition leader Gabriel Medina is seeded straight through to the title match.