Sean Doherty

Senior Writer, SURFER Magazine

3.5.14

Features

Center Stage

The girls shine in the best conditions of the Roxy Pro waiting period so far

In these seemingly enlightened times, it’s hard to believe that Snapper Rocks was once home to a captive dolphin show, the dolphins housed in a claustrophobic concrete pool just yards from where the original Snapper crew surfed. Bib and Bub as they’d been named—I’m sure they referred to each other as something else in dolphinese—had

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3.3.14

Features

Love and Waves

Recapping the Round 2 drama from the Quik Pro Snapper

With the Oscars happening yesterday in Hollywood, we thought we’d open today’s missive with a closing Hollywood scene, one from the action classics, a Die Hard special. In Jordy Smith’s case it has become an all too familiar closing scene… Scene: Jordy’s in a car, which has crashed and is teetering precariously on the edge

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3.2.14

Features

Facing Off

First impressions of the new ASP World Tour after Round 1 at Snapper

[Editor’s note: The ASP’s media policy states that surf photographers like Peter “Joli” Wilson, who have documented the World Tour for decades, cannot cover the event without relinquishing ownership of their images to the ASP. We hope this issue is resolved in the near future.] I had the pleasure of sharing breakfast with Peter Townend

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3.2.14

Features

With Arms Wide Open

The women shine during Round 1 of the Roxy Pro at Snapper

[Editor’s note: The ASP’s media policy states that surf photographers like Peter “Joli” Wilson, who have documented the World Tour for decades, cannot cover the event without relinquishing ownership of their images to the ASP. We hope this issue is resolved in the near future.] The battlesong of the new pro surfing republic washed across

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2.27.14

Features

The Stadium by the Sea

Sean Doherty reports from the new, new birthplace of the ASP

“Mick!” I check over my shoulder then point at myself, eyebrows raised. “Me?” “Yeah, Mick! Just want to say congrats on the world title and wish you good luck in the contest.” Flummoxed, I slowly make sense of the scene unfolding outside Coolangatta airport this morning; this chick thinks I’m Mick Fanning. It’s an easy

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12.14.13

Features

Lightning Strikes Thrice

Kelly Slater Wins the Pipe Masters while Mick Fanning clinches the 2013 World Title in dramatic fashion

Mick Fanning was down the beach, just past Off The Wall, and he’d hardly slept a wink. The swell was one thing. The dull roar of the approaching freight trains on Third Reef, the sledgehammer-on-steel strikes on First Reef that sounded like time being torn, the whole North Shore a white noise cacophony under the influence of a big north-west swell. But the fact Kelly was looming large in his rearview mirror was another thing altogether. Kelly’s Pipe Masters record here is fat as a phone book…and that’s not even the part you’ve got to worry about. Pipe is one giant magnetic field of energy, and Kelly out here is not only purely magnetic but can also influence his opponent’s polarity.

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12.10.13

Features

Shooting Star

Day Two of the Pipe Masters sees Fanning and Slater focus squarely on the World Title

The scene: Kelly Slater’s parked on the side of the road in downtown L.A. It’s four weeks ago today. He’s just squeezed in 13 holes of golf before sunset and he’s on his way to dinner with friends. He picks the phone up and dials a number in Australia. There’s always something cool about “Kelly

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12.8.13

Features

Serenity Now

The reef at Backdoor rumbles as the Pipe Masters kicks off in pumping surf

“His violence was in the halo of his serenity.” Norman Mailer, The Fight. Serenity, however, is always in short supply on the North Shore in December. The place is teeming; a poked beehive of teenage cage fighters, teenage girls in bikinis, and the artery-fat of day-tripping tourists from Honolulu. Oh, alongside with every pro surfer

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10.17.13

Features

Ottz Wins in Portugal

The new Kai Otton takes the trophy and pushes the World Title conversation to Pipeline

Today, it was Kai who had the coolest head. This was the feel-good win of the season, and it consigned the world title to the back pages.

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10.16.13

Features

The Portuguese Landscape

Julian Wilson throws an oop for the ages, and Mick Fanning is a heat closer to the 2013 World Title

Two champions might be crowned, and a contest that has been characterized for marginal surf might just have one last surprise left for us.

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