John John Florence impressed at Pipeline ©Getty Images

All three Olympic medallists navigated their way through the opening men's round at the first World Surf League (WSL) Championship Tour event of the season at iconic Hawaiian wave Pipeline.

Tokyo 2020 gold medallist Italo Ferreira was involved in a low-scoring fifth heat, winning it with a two-wave score of just 7.06.

Japan's Kanoa Igarashi was 4.44 points short of local surfer Seth Moniz's score, but still went through in second place in heat seven, whereas Owen Wright scored 13.34 to win the first heat.

Wright's fellow Australian Jack Robinson produced the best total of the day, 18.67.

Robinson rode inside the tube and emerged unscathed on his top-scoring effort, for 9.50, and a second score of 9.17 underlined his impressive day.

American surfing icon Kelly Slater was in the same heat and relegated to second place on 16.57, but advances to the round of 32.

John John Florence, another of Hawaii's own, was a standout performer with two scores above 8.50.

Florence also surfed inside the crest of a wave as the location lived up to its billing as one of the photogenic surfing venues.

Australia's Morgan Cibilic and the South African Jordy Smith were among the more high-profile of the 12 surfers that had to face the elimination round, held later in the day.

Cibilic only made scores of 0.43 and 1.40 in this round and was consequently eliminated.

The other three surfers eliminated at this stage were Imaikalani DeVault of Hawaii, Australia's Jordan Lawler and Jadson Andre of Brazil.  

A women's competition is also on the agenda at the first stop of the WSL Championship Tour season.

Ferreira's Brazilian compatriot Gabriel Medina, the defending WSL champion, is not taking part, having stepped away from competitive surfing for the season to focus on his mental health. 

The women's opening round is scheduled to take place tomorrow, with six heats scheduled.