Stab Magazine | Jordy Smith Is Ditching His Traditional Shapes To Suit Kelly’s Wave

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Jordy Smith Is Ditching His Traditional Shapes To Suit Kelly’s Wave

Adaptation in a controlled environment.

hardware // May 5, 2018
Words by stab
Reading Time: 3 minutes

A few days back, a clip of Jordy Smith dropped on @raimanaworld’s Instagram.

We yawned at yet another slice of inland surf – they’re quickly going out of vogue leading up to the Founder’s Cup—then sighed, then saw the board beneath his feet and perked up.

Riding a Slater Designs, Jordy (attempted to) crouch very, very low to fit his 6’3 frame into the manmade tube, as he put it, “looking like a giraffe on roller skates.”

It was, er, breaking news… We posted it, claiming “Jordy Smith too big for the wavepool.”

Which, is kind of true.

“I definitely feel like I’m at a disadvantage there,” he tells Stab. “I can’t get as deep [in the tube] as most guys. It’s just physics.”

However, the way this event will be scored is going to exceed the barrel – which is a fairly simple affair.

“It’s not like the scale of difficulty is very high,” says Jordy. “A 60-year-old man can get a barrel out there.”

Since parting ways with Channel Islands, Jordy’s been shopping around, sampling different board builders, broadening his horizons on craft and designs.

“Being a free agent has opened my mind to some new concepts. I wouldn’t be going down this [Slater Designs] Omni path, with this nose, if I wasn’t on the market.”

“My boards don’t fit in that wave—they’re a little too long,” he continues. “I have a bunch of these Slater Designs now, that I want to go back and try [before the Founders Cup]. I rode this 5’9 Omni thing that worked pretty good. It’s a little more stable and fits better in the pocket than what I’ve been riding. It’s got a wakeboard kind of nose, so I’m pretty interested to see if the judges like or don’t like the way it looks. I want to test it and see.”

“I want to try and shave down the nose, so it’s not as long and crazy looking. I want to draw an outline on the bottom deck then get a grinder and grind down the rail, like the last six to eight inches and narrow it up to make a bullet nose.”

We asked Jordy if snub nose threw him off while surfing.

“Nah, I don’t really notice it. It’s more for the outsider’s perspective. I’m not sure how it’ll be judged. I’m just worried it doesn’t look the best. But, if you’re doing the moves you got to get the points.”

Talking to Damien Fahrenfort–Jordy’s manager–last night, he said Jordy was planning on riding his JS on the right, and opting for the Slater Designs on the left.

A situation where Raimana would be caddying his board on the jetski, presumably shouting “IT’S OMNI TIME” for the entirety of the right, then swapping the board while the pool settled before the left.

Judging by the above clip, the Slater Designs does appear smoother on Jordy’s backhand, allowing him to surf with less bobble, and get as small as possible to squeeze through the inside tube section.

“It all kind of depends. This whole wavepool thing is so new. You’re just trying to figure out what fits you better and how you can look different than every other guy”—which is no easy task on a wave that is nearly the same every push of the train.

“I don’t think they can really score the barrel that high. What will get scored is seamless surfing–no pumping or waiting for sections. It’s mostly how you can ride it somewhat different. If you have more power and can throw more spray you might get scored better,” says Jordy catering to the Super Soaker attached to the tail of any board he rides.

“But honestly, I don’t know. I think everyone’s interested to see how this is going to be judged and scored. It’s all trial and error at this point.”


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