Reef Doig is the latest from THE O’RIGINALS, a series from O’Neill examining the influence surfing has had on the lives of some of Australia’s relatively unknown shred heads.

Reef’s story is unique in that he left Australia for Bali at a young age and grew up to be a product of this surfing utopia. Reef’s old boy is former Cronulla charger Geoff Doig who helped form Reef’s wiring for the pro surf dream. As the teen years began, so did the results with Reef winning almost every Indonesian based junior event he entered.

The slight American twang in Reef’s accent Reef from the international school he was attending in Canggu until he wasn’t. With the results there, Reef ditched school to focus on surfing, but the allure of Bali’s permanent holiday party time lifestyle sucked up Reef’s free time like a Hoover and everyone around him began to worry about what this would mean long term.

At 15, Reef took a quick trip back to Australia Reef to test his skills at Occy’s Grom Comp where he was able to nab a win beating Ethan Ewing in the final. With a little taste of a more competitive environment and the win as a feather in his cap, Reef decided to move back to Australia on his own. The plan was to surf, finish school and break the party spiral he’d found himself in Bali.

From here the common story of Qualifying Series and sponsorship struggles diluted Reef’s dream and eventually his love for surfing. Forced to redirect his entire life Reef was able to fall back on the confidence of what he had achieved on a personal level when he took the difficult path of starting life over in a new country at the age of 16.

Reef returned to Bali with a world of experience most people don’t have at 22 years old. He’s fluent in two languages and has a unique understanding of both Balinese and Australian culture that he now plans to use when he applies his ambition to the business world.


Surfing World