Sean Doherty

Senior Writer, SURFER Magazine

7.19.15

Features

Zapruder’s Surf Film

Making sense of the near-tragedy at Jeffreys Bay

There was a chilling moment after Mick Fanning had been knocked off his board last night at Jeffreys Bay by what was clearly—as the Mayor of Amity Island might call it—“a large marine predator,” Mick’s board having floated away, his legs kicking in the dark water, the shark still thrashing, the cameras still rolling, the

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7.13.15

Photos

Occy Through The Ages

A collection of moments from the career of Mark Occhilupo, as narrated by Sean Doherty

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6.16.15

Features

Claw Marks On The Drywall

Owen Wright surfed Cloudbreak perfectly, and we should have seen it coming

There are claw marks all over the drywall of Owen Wright’s bure on Namotu Island. All week he’s been waiting for the day, visualizing himself locked inside the blue wormholes of Cloudbreak, both his paws dragging in the wall to hold him inside there as long as humanly possible and spare him from the horrors

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6.14.15

Features

Fishing From The Bar

Cloudbreak proves to be the perfect contest wave, to the Top 34's delight

Don’t let the door hit you on the way out. There’s not a lot of dignity in the second round of a World Tour surfing contest. It’s a necessary and heartless cull to thin out a bloated field, the heats unremarkable, indistinguishable, as desperation subsumes talent and we all walk away and wash the dog

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6.12.15

Features

Everything and Nothing

Notes from the channel at Cloudbreak after Round 1 of the Fiji Pro

The Cowboy and The Jockey sat down at breakfast on Namotu, having just returned from the dawn surf. Matt Wilkinson has not taken his cowboy hat off for the whole steaming tropical week, and he’s rarely been seen without his resident offsider Glenn Hall in tow. The pair of comical high-plains drifters has been the

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6.11.15

Features

The Day The Earth Stood Still

A lay-day report from Fiji, where there was a total lack of swell and a broken Wi-Fi router

The Wi-Fi has crashed and the world has stopped dead. Grown men wander Namotu Island waving their phones at the sky, sweeping the air for a crumb of signal, the anxiety that Instagram feeds are scrolling by unchecked gnawing away at their very being. There are no interrupting Skype chats. There are no swell forecasts.

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4.10.15

Features

Hells Belles

What does Carissa Moore's win at the Rip Curl Pro tell us about women's surfing?

There was a sausage sizzle going on at Bells today. Not the metaphorical kind–it was the women’s final day–but up in the judges booth a tray of sausage sandwiches were brought out to celebrate the departure of Max Wells, Bells long serving contest director, who’s been feeding the cheap and dubious Australian staple to contest

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4.8.15

Features

Brilliant Nothings at Bells

Mick Fanning defeats Adriano De Souza at the Rip Curl Pro for his fourth Bells trophy

We saw the future of surfing today, and their names were…Mick Fanning and Adriano De Souza?! Yes, it’s hard to believe that in this era of the 24-hour surf-star cycle, in a week where we’ve anointed Filipe Toledo as the most revolutionary surfer since John Florence last week, we’ve gone back to where it all

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4.6.15

Features

Disposable Heroes

A new guard takes hold at Bells

As I sit here scratching away at the keyboard, John John Florence is surfing and no one seems to care. It sounds as crazy as it is. There is a rabid mob outside–largely Brazilian teenagers but of several stripes and creeds–gathered around Filipe Toledo. The young Brazilian replaces a young Hawaiian who replaced another young

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4.5.15

Features

The Resurrection

Round 2 runs and Matt Wilkinson rises at Bells

I remember the first morning Wilko rolled into the surfer’s area for his first heat on tour at Snapper Rocks. He literally did roll in, wearing a pair of second-hand rollerblades and a top hat he jived in ready to add some life to what was an increasingly bland pantomime.

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