Curl Curl Longboarders Club President Tim Reilly later justified the decision to The Sydney Morning Herald, claiming the only reason female surfers don't receive the same amount of prize money as the men was because, simply, it's been that way since the event was founded in 2011.
“I just feel bad for the guys who ran it for the whole day and put hundreds of hours into it," he told the publication. "She [Small] should have come and seen me, that was an easy thing that could have been fixed."
Adding insult to injury, club secretary Phil Nicol also told SMH that he saw no problem awarding women less money, claiming organisers did nothing "illegal."
"This is a moral issue," he said, adding, "we’ve done nothing illegal."
Speaking to SMH after the clip went viral, Small said she was unaware that the prize money would be unequal, as per the World Surf League's guidelines, with the organisation committing to equal prize money in 2018.
“We are just so sick of this happening,” she said. “I am just really tired of putting in so much time and effort and money and investing so much into going to these events... and getting less than half the reward.”
It's proactive and impressive women like Small who push this narrative forward, and thanks to her actions the club's committee has said prize money would be made equal across all categories for future events.