Size: 7ft x 23″ x 3″
Volume: 62.5 litres
Tested: (above) 5-6ft Grande Plage, Biarritz (below) 2ft Mundaka
But why make boards in Northern Ireland, when they can be made in the Far East at a fraction of the cost, we wondered? Why bother with fancy stuff like environmental and safety standards, workers’/human rights etc etc, all things that would surely punish your bottom line?
How do you even make a softboard more eco-friendly? And WTFeck is heat bonded, anyway?
But above all, do they actually work?
Following a whole load of R&D and plenty of feedback from a few seasons supplying the surf school market across Europe, Skunkworks are unveiling a V3 softboard for 2018, longer lasting boards with non-rashing decks, made without any glue whatsoever, and sourced from raw materials in UK/Ireland, making a minimum of a environmental footprint where possible.
Test pilot extraordinaire Adrien Toyon, (whom you may recall made a world record attempt last year for Surf Europe, riding 17 surfboards in under 3 hours at the WaveGarden Cove) paddled out on the Skunkworks 7ft recently on a forboding, wintry day in Biarritz. Snow had dumped on the Pyrenees, and a thick, solid 6ft groundswell was pretty much closing out Grande Plage.
Ideal conditions to put the Skunkworks 7 Foot through her paces to find out how she handled the juice, we thought.
Here’s what Toyon reckoned:
“That was a lot of fun. The board paddled really well, and felt really well made and strong. She took a couple of beatings out there, like me (laughs). It’s obviously a lot different from the shortboards I usually ride in competition, and made a really cool alternative to try something new and fun out, instead.”
So Adrien liked it then. Thing is, when you’re at pro-level, within reason, you can ride anything, pretty much. What would a (below) average surfer make of the board, in average conditions? Scroll down, and find out.