Mick Fanning has seen and done it all at Bells Beach.
He first rang the famous bell as a wildcard way back in 2001 and has saluted in three of the past four years.
But this year is different - very different.
After a traumatic 2015, including that infamous shark attack in South Africa, a marriage break-up and the death of his brother just days before the world title decider in Hawaii, the Australian superstar is taking a post-Bells sabbatical from the world tour.
The 34-year-old triple world champion has set no date for his comeback, because he doesn't know yet when he will get the itch to return.
"After this, I'm going on holidays, so good luck trying to find me," Fanning said on Wednesday, a day before the scheduled start of the Rip Curl Pro.
"I'm really excited.
"We've got a really cool trip with Rip Curl planned.
"We'll get off the beaten path and just go and hang with good people and have some good moments.
"I've had the same schedule for so long that I just want to break it and do something new."
Fanning is still in top shape heading into the second event of the World Surf League (WSL) tour at a venue he loves.
"Obviously, every time I paddle out, I'm going to give it my all but I'm not sitting here and freaking out about whether I win a heat or not," he said.
"It's more about being here and enjoying the moment, just enjoying such a special place."
Fellow Australian Matt Wilkinson is the surprise early-season WSL pacesetter, having won the opening event on the Gold Coast.
Now in his seventh year on the tour, the laidback Wilkinson readily admitted it was a long-overdue triumph.
"For the first few years, I really thought I would get that first win pretty quick and then, to not get one for so long, it was almost like I didn't know how," said the 27-year-old from the NSW central coast.
"But when I got it, it was almost like 'that was easy; I should have been doing this all along'.
"My preparation is 100 times better than it's ever been.
"My body feels really good, I feel strong and I'm a lot fitter than I've ever been."
Fanning said Wilkinson had always been a remarkably talented surfer, but only now was he putting the whole package together.
"People still probably see him as the fun guy but he's put in a lot of hard work," said Fanning.
"He's always had one or two great heats per event but, until now, he's never put a whole event together.
"To see him do that, I was over the moon."
The men's and women's Rip Curl pro events could begin on Thursday, although conditions are expected to be much better on Friday and throughout the Easter weekend.