Oliver?s at home surfing the best
IMAGINE waking up to the sound of waves crashing into the sand before strolling down to your office for work each morning.
This surfing dream has become a reality for rising Rockhampton board rider Oliver Shaw.
Shaw, 18, is one of Australia's hottest surfing talents after bursting onto the Australian longboard circuit in 2005.
Shaw, who now calls Duranbah on the Gold Coast home and lives just 100m from two of the best breaks in the world, finished runner-up in the junior division on his tour debut.
He also proved he could mix it with the nation's best pros, placing 24th overall.
Not a bad effort for a kid who crafted his skills on the shores of Central Queensland.
"My goal is to take my surfing, both shortboard and longboard, as far as I can go,'' said Shaw, after catching an early wave at Yeppoon's Farnborough Beach last week.
"If I can keep my training up I should be able to.''
Shaw turned heads in last year's tour opener at McCauley's Beach, Coffs Harbour, when he "knocked off'' the pros to win the $1000 on offer in the noserider division.
He was then invited to join the national stage, which took him to the beaches of Western Australia, Victoria and New South Wales.
"I was pretty stoked just to win my heat that day.''
Shaw hopes to follow in the footsteps of idol Mick Fanning who, according to this young star, has changed the surfing image.
"Guys like that are taking surfing to new levels,'' said Shaw, who is preparing to start a diploma of sport management in surfing at Southern Cross University.