In December 2014, I watched Gabriel Medina usher in a new era for Brazilian surfing. Watching Gabriel win the world title was one of the proudest moments of my life - not only was he changing the game, he’d done it surfing my boards. It was also a turning point in my personal journey as a shaper.
Squash? Rounded Pin? Swallow? Square? Diamond? Even good surfers with a solid grasp of shaping theory can find themselves feeling baffled by the range of tail shapes on offer today. Others might have a preference for a particular shape, but have no real idea why. So, we asked Johnny (a walking encyclopaedia of hydrodynamics) to explain the fundamentals of tail shape – arguably the most critical aspect of how a board performs on a wave.
The fins of your board are fundamental to how your board handles, and while Johnny is the expert on fin placement so you don’t have to be, it’s good to understand the fundamentals, starting with the fin itself.
If you’re a surfer you’ve never ordered a custom board before… trust me, you’re ready. Many surfers spend their whole lives buying stock models, figuring they are either not good enough for a custom, or that they are too expensive, take too long etc. Well, just like getting a made-to-measure suit will always fit you better...
The DFK was first designed for Gabriel Medina back in 2009, and has been his go-to contest board ever since. As Gabriel evolved into the world’s best surfer, the DFK has evolved into a board that’s tuned to excel in the best waves in the world – Gabriel won the 2014 Fiji Pro and 2014 Billabong Pro Tahiti on the DFK. And he will be using it again in Teahupoo this week..
Things are heating up nicely on the 2016 WCT title race: just a few days ago we had King Kelly smoke everyone in small but perfect Chopes, and a change of yellow jersey as John John squeezed past Gabriel in a nail-biting, near-perfect semi. With everything to play for and fingernails bitten down to the stump, it was action stations this week at the Basque Country Surf Company as Johnny put together Gabriel’s Trestles quiver...
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