Author Topic: How small are the Pro's actually riding?  (Read 5832 times)

14 West

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How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« on: January 11, 2013, 05:36:18 PM »
Now that a bunch of a us bigger guys are on the (second) smallest production pro-model starboards, it makes me think those guys can't possibly be riding their own production version boards. Why would they? Everything seems to point to maximum performance coming at the smallest possible volume that you can handle for your weight, and most of the top 3 starboard guys look to be about a buck-forty or so. Given that Cardiff and I are around 185 lbs, surely that should mean those guys should be on 68-70-ish Litre boards. Otherwise, that extra volume has to be a penalty, because I know our extra bulk makes sinking the extra volume and setting rails, or generally throwing it around a lot easier than if we were lightweights. Technique and talent probably helps make up some of that gap sure, but the question again is why bother if you can and should be able to go much, much smaller.

Anyone know?
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Cardiff Sweeper

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2013, 06:38:54 PM »
Sean Poynter's current custom board is
7'4"x28.5"x3.4" (measurements weren't on the board)


But he also has a 7'7"x27".  I surfed with him a couple days before the Brazil contest and those were the two boards he uses for competition. (Of course there are backup boards, as well.)
They basically shape boards for the team riders to ride, and tweak them before production. But yes, some of them are riding actual production boards.  

There is another thread about Mo Freitas and his 7'4x23x something.

But we know unless his growth gets stunted, he'll have to go bigger as the board has to float you. :)



« Last Edit: January 11, 2013, 06:43:02 PM by Cardiff Sweeper »

colas

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2013, 05:22:22 AM »
Anyone know?

I don't know, but my guess is that in contests, wave selection, paddling speed and getting the priority and other tactical tricks are very important (if not the most important?). A faster, stabler board can help for this. also having a board too extreme means you run the risk of falling, ruining your scores. And these guys have the technique to make radical turns on any kind of boards.

For instance, Gong has no sponsored team riders, but people using their boards in contests use 8' boards rather than 6'6" ones, otherwise the other competitors could block them for taking any wave by controlling them with positioning for the priority.

So it makes sense for me if competitors have some production boards in their quiver (plus I guess it is easier to get backups with known shapes locally if the boards are lost in transport)

sup_surf_giant

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2013, 08:23:04 AM »
7'7 seems pretty common.

Taller than most, shorter than others.

14 West

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2013, 11:06:01 AM »
Interesting.

I had no idea riders were docked points for falling in, I figured it was all scored on the wave, not what happens getting there or waiting for them. Are they allowed to sit and straddle the board while they wait for sets?
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surfcowboy

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2013, 06:15:13 PM »
Don't wanna start a scandal but in a few of the contests I've been to I've seen a good number of folks paddling back out prone I'm sure to save their legs but it happens.

Shhh...

colas

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2013, 11:45:24 AM »
I had no idea riders were docked points for falling in, I figured it was all scored on the wave,

You are right, I wasn't clear. I meant falling while attempting to catch a wave, resulting in no score at all :-)

I seem to remember the early World Tour events (Anglet?) had some rule to forbid prone or knee paddling, but obviously it is not enforced anymore.

JohnnyMaya

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2013, 01:20:42 PM »
The current judging criteria says that if a SUPper paddles in a prone position all the time, he'll see his scores afected since it is seen as a lack of control (one of the key points of the criteria).

This rules happens to take place because on the first year of the Stand Up World tour there were some surfers that were using boards that were almost impossible to paddle, but would perform better on the wave.

surfcowboy

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2013, 03:43:17 PM »
On the SUP World Tour page on facebook today they posted this:

"Just to clarify, as we have been hearing unfounded rumors aboard board restrictions: there are no board size restrictions in place for the Stand Up World Tour. However, we do have a strict stand up paddling rule regarding paddling out, so if you are going short, make sure you can still paddle on it! Our official rule book will go live later this month."

Looks like they want you to be able to paddle as well as surf. ;)

Surf N Sup

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2013, 04:19:14 PM »
 weigh 200lbs and my high performance competition board is an 8'7 carbon fiber 5 fin set-up. I could maybe drop one or two more inches but that would be sacrificing paddling power. Some of the pro's that I compete against are down to boards in the 7 - 7 1/2 ft range but they also only weight 140 - 160 lbs. Hope this helps. Basically the smallest board you can get away with while still being able to balance on it and paddle into waves. Put on a traction pad with a kick tail and let 'er rip.

14 West

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2013, 11:34:59 PM »
Thanks Sup n Surf.

Not entirely sure if I agree that SUP surfers should be judged on paddling out, who cares. If they can stand long enough to catch waves and paddle around the lineup, that is good enough for me. If they are falling in too much, they'll have trouble catching waves and scoring, and thus the size vs. rider balance should sort itself out as part of the competition. Rider A may pick a larger board and catch more waves but his rides are boring, rider B might have a smaller board, struggle more, catch fewer waves, but have way more radical rides. In the end, the scores balance out, but I would way rather watch rider B.
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jd

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2013, 07:41:44 PM »
It is a standup paddling contest.  I think it would be ridiculous to see some guy laying down during a heat only jump up once on a wave.  What's the point of it being standup paddling if you are not standup paddling?

And watching guys standup surfing even on 7.5 boards is still boring.  They aren't pulling maneuvers or surfing like regular surfboards.

colas

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2013, 12:39:20 AM »
There should be paddling rules, otherwise you will get people out in shortboards with a fake paddle clipped to their belt, that would out-manoeuver them on the wave, with the paddle giving added leverage to shortboard manoeuvers... (and be able to duckdive).

See: http://www.standupzone.com/forum/index.php?topic=3501.0
The Gong link is outdated, see instead http://jpaction.over-blog.com/article-30240067.html


Surfershane

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2013, 08:23:46 PM »
It is a standup paddling contest.  I think it would be ridiculous to see some guy laying down during a heat only jump up once on a wave.  What's the point of it being standup paddling if you are not standup paddling?

And watching guys standup surfing even on 7.5 boards is still boring.  They aren't pulling maneuvers or surfing like regular surfboards.

Unfortunately this seems to be the accepted trend over here in Australia.  I agree with the posts that argue it is no longer stand up paddle.  If a board does not float you standing up whilst stationary then if you do not effectively make use of the paddle once on a wave in my opinion it is no longer really stand up paddle?
   
Oh, I got myself in a lot of trouble expressing this opinion on another forum.  Regardless, I do think we need rules and limitations.  Likewise, I am glad to read many of the above posts.

14 West

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Re: How small are the Pro's actually riding?
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2013, 10:46:58 PM »
You should be able to stand up on the board, but I don't think the board should be big enough that you can stand around on it waving to your buddies back on shore while you wait for sets. It's somewhere between the two, and maybe a rule that simply says you have to catch waves from a standing position to eliminate some of the concerns expressed above. That way, if you go too small, you lose out on waves, go too big and the riding won't be aggressive enough. If the scoring accommodates a certain amount of falling in (and I mean like 0-3 times a heat depending on whether it is glassy or cranking 20 knots), then I think the sport finds the sweet spot.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2013, 10:48:38 PM by 14 West »
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