After much deliberation about the forecast Joe decided to pop down for the second half of the Board Masters with a view to supporting Loco team riders Tina, Luke and Finn and maybe catching a few Atlantic bumps himself. After a thankless 8hr mission he arrived early doors to be met with 2-3′ clean waves at Fistral so it was SUP time.
After a power hour the waves were dropping and water had become really busy with tourists so Joe called it and decided to catch up with Tina Luke and Finn. It sounded like earlier in the week had been much better for waves although both Finn and Luke had been knocked out in their heats drawing some eventual finalists which was a shame as we had high hopes for both riders. That said Tina had made good progress in the short boarding event and was poised for the 1/4 finals in the longboard category so we were stoked for her!
As the waves were turning to crap at Fistral Joe and Luke went in search of some swell with a view to getting some snaps and video. After some endless driving they chanced upon some small peaky waves so it was time to get in. South African Luke can certainly twist and was effortlessly popping aerials on his Loco 5’4” Magic Whale in between throwing brine all over the place!
After an hour or so of snapping the boys called it and cracked a beer looking over beautiful Crantock bay. Luke was off to the Festival but Joe was keen to say sober (for a change) and max out on waves the following day with a view to hooking up with Steve Thorp from K4 Fins. After a decent night’s sleep in the van Joe was up and at them early and hooked up with Steve at South Fistral as everywhere else seemed to have the wind on it or was super small. The waves didn’t look all that for SUP so Joe played snapper while Thorpy scored a few fat wedges putting his new K4 surf fins through their paces.
The forecast seemed to drop away to practically nothing so we wondered whether Tina’s longboard event would even happen?! The judges wisely decided to put it back a couple of hours although the conditions were still very small which would make for a tight heat. She was up against some world class competition with a girl from France being the the favourite.
The girls headed out and Tina was doing really well sitting in 2nd place for the majority of the heat after dialling in some impressive cutbacks and a cheeky hang 5 on some really challenging waves. The French girl Justine was in a completely different league dancing around on the board and even hanging 10 backwards!
Sadly another girl from the UK sneaked a higher scoring wave in the dying seconds which left Tina with too much to do and despite paddling for the next set the whistle went just before she could drop in.
A tricky set of conditions and a really close heat so Tina stays optimistic about her competitive surfing and certainly learned a lot from the experience. Naturally we were amped for her and the fact that she got her entry fees back for making the quarters possibly took a little pain out of not getting through.
Saturday night was supposed to be another quiet one but somehow Thorpy blagged Joe into going to see Rudimental at the Festival. In fairness it was a fantastic set with the crowd really going for it. After several cold ones and some crowd surfing we headed back to Newquay for some kip.
Alongside the Loco team we bumped into numerous guys from Tynemouth who’d been competing and were stoked to hear Tynemouth Surf Co owner Steve Hudson had advanced further than anyone making a solid account of himself in the longboard event competing against former ISA longboard and SUP world champion Antoine Delpero! Sunday was finals day and the standard or surfing was off the hook with the international contingent really showing their class. Antoine and his brother were stand out knocking out the likes of UK ripper Ben Skinner with minimal fuss. The French girls were also cooking on gas as well as a USA ripper. The event certainly had an international flavour which can only be good for UK surfing and just watching the finals should give the upcoming groms like Finn something to aspire to.
Sunday night proved to be a windy wobble fest but Joe sand Thorpy got in a for a late dip at little Fistral on the outgoing tide. The current and wind were largely prohibitive for any quality SUP waves but Steve was putting a few nice ones together so much so Joe decided to let him hang on to a Loco 5’8” Mini Simmons for some shape feedback next time he gets wet.
After another early night, Joe met up with Tina at Towan Beach to do a bit of training but the waves were pretty slack we they just had a catch up and scored a few waves together before she had to get back to work. The waves weren’t saying much the rest of the day with wind being the main problem. Shame the conditions weren’t better for our time down in Kernow but some new contacts were made, we got the brand out there as far as our surfboards go and a beach full of people witnessed what’s possible on a SUP for a couple of sessions.
We’ll be doing more comps over the coming months both here in the UK and in Europe so if you’re keen to demo a Loco board or want to discuss potential sponsorship we’d love to hear from any suitable candidates.
Photo Credits: Joey T / Dan Sedgwick