Sunday, February 11, 2007

More people, more often, more places.

That's what the longboard de-revolution will bring to the windsurfing world.

That's what Svein Rasmussen, founder of Starboard, says in this little interview he gave me last December. If you can't see it here, try here.

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Thanks to Svein for all those compliments (he's a really nice guy) and for sharing with us a vision that I completely agree with.
Because for three years I've sailed a longboard surfboard on the waves in light wind. And I know how much fun it is.
And there's many others that actually never stopped having fun with longboards.
Check this old clip that Wardog did a few years ago. At 51 seconds you'll see a guy riding waves on a Hifly Revo. Well, I tried that too. It's nearly impossible, because of the lack of rocker (those are beginner boards)... but that guy didn't have anything better. Now he will.

As you can see from the main page of their website (click on Do it standing up!), Starboard is going to make two models of longboards, both good for SUP surfing, regular surfing, tandem surfing, AND sailing in light wind with or without waves.

A 12'2" X 26 5/8" by Mark Raaphorst (top Maui based SUP rider and shaper).
and a 12'6" x 30" by Svein Rasmussen/Jim Drake.

Both are great boards, available around April.
The first one is prolly a bit easier to turn, but with the last prototype of the second one (to which design Jeff Henderson has heavily contributed), the other day I was able to hang ten for like 4 seconds... Hang ten means riding a wave with both feet on the nose of the board. Unreal.

And, in case there was need for a confirmation that a change is really happening, I officially announce that my kingdom at lower Kanaha has come to an end. Today, in fact, there were three more longboarders together with me... one was Peter Thommen with his own prototype.
I'm not alone out there anymore.
I reigned unchallenged for three wonderful years. So many times I've been the only one out in complete solitude. Some other times with the company of a few surfers or kitesurfers or slogging windsurfers.
Again, I feel like that guy that surfed Mavericks alone for many years, before he shared it with some friends and the spot became known. I feel like a very privileged windsurfer. And I want to thank Jeff - again - for sharing the knowledge of such an incredible source of fun.

This is a nice picture of Svein and Jeff going out for a test session. You can't see the boards (eheh..), but you can admire the beauty of those sails (Jeff's one is an early prototype of the new upcoming Fire).

Let me change subject, but let me keep thanking Jeff.
Yesterday I broke my mast in the waves. I was being sucked out by the channel and pushed back in by the waves and I did this loop for four times. The equipment got a lot of serious poundings. When I finally was able to swim away from that circling current, I managed to sail back to the beach (clearly, I was on the longboard). With the mast broken in three pieces. It looked like I was sailing a tent, Chantal said on the beach.
Guess what happened to the mast sleeve?
Pretty much nothing.
What the hell is that material made of?!? All the other sails I used in the past would have had at least the mast sleeve lacerated. More prolly they would have been completely destroyed by the waves. Instead, I was able to sail back, change the mast and go sail again... my Superfreak was intact. Unbelievable.
Here's one of the spots where the mast broke. Can barely tell.

Allright, enough windsurfing for today.

Yesterday, after sailing, I went to Cash&Carry and I bought some frozen Mahi Mahi ($1.69 a piece... I cook it in a fresh tomato soupy sauce... delicious) and some beers. Unfortunately, they didn't have cold beers. But I was thirsty.
Now, not only I am happy that my mind was able to come up with such an idea... but what really pleases me is that I actually did it!
This is my patented frozen Mahi Mahi beer holder. You put it on in Kahului and by the time you get in Makawao, the beer is chilled.
Notice the need of a vacuum cleaner on the left and the two standup paddles and the signs of the Hookipa rocks on my board on the right...

That cold beer feels good... of course, you better eat the fish after that, but that was the plan already...

After beer amusement.

So long.


Ben said...

Hey Cammar,

I just got my new 5.3 superfreak (C287)! It looks so awesome, I can't wait to sail it. the luff sleeve material is indeed nice, it looks really strong. I don't know what its made of. interesting to see starboard going with new stand-up boards. cool!

Pascal said...

I've got Superfreaks 5.3, 4.7, and 5.8 bought used and they are all like new! I love the sails for a few reasons:
1- soft sails .. handle gusts and pumping beautifuly;
2- no monofilm that dies after a few years (like my Naish sails) because of the sun;
3- easy to pack (I came back from Maui with two of them in my suitcase!) and smaller size when rolled;
4- The materails used are solid .. the sleeve, the leather everywhere, the dacron, the window .. everything looks strong and so far so good.

Go to Jeff's shop and rent one ;)

jeff E of the Great White North said...

good interview G,
and funny too, i like how you started off , " whoa.... better keep looking where your going, no need to be looking at the camera, ah? lets be safe "
agian , good interview

cammar said...

Glad you guys enjoy your freaks.

Jeff, I had to goggle LMAO... now I know yet another acronym...

Robin said...

But I bet MILF is still your favourite ;-)

Trying to get more and more people to come to grips with S.U.P. sailing here in Holland. Hopefully when the first boards arrive people will see it and love it. There is this greate quote from this wuderman, Mr. R. Naish (ever heared of him?), who says in an early nineties promo vid for Gaastra: 'I didn't plane the first couple of years of windsurfing and I had a great time' (something along those lines anyway. Lets try to get that back in the sport! B.T.W. you should get your beercooler patented, I've got a hunch that your on to something.

cammar said...

Oh yeah... I love MILF...

Great quote from Robby. That should tell everybody something.