My good friend Ian Wraith AKA “Piskian” is an ex-pat Cornishman living in Japan. Ian lives on a beautiful, quiet (by Japanese standards) tropical island with his wife and two children. Ian is also a pretty great mat rider.
Anyway, Ian was lined up for a mat and we managed to line his mat up with his visit, and so it was that Akamata was born…
Akamata is a Nouveau Racer so designed with more solid waves in mind. There is a particular point break on the Island that is very reminiscent of a certain North Cornish point with long lefts of a shallow boulder bottom. The difference is, you have a huge paddle just to get to the inside! With this in mind, Ian took the pragmatic decision to break form and go for a bungee leash fitting.
This isn’t to always have a leash, just to have the option when those huge typhoon swells come in. These leash fittings have developed over time and the nose flange is now HEAVILY reinforced. The leash fits to the middle loop so the mat concertinas to absorb the energy and the bungee is elastic. All of this combines to give a fitting that can take on the job, although it is still best to hang on to your mat!
The deck it 200d nylon dyed Fire Red with an added experimental tattoo (that didn’t show well so that is why we experiment).
The bottom material is an open weave 70d that goes juuuuust lovely! Restricted breather to help Akamata to hold her shape in big surf and to handle surface chop at speed.
Ian has given her a go and reports:
Just rode Akamata in head-high double-up dry tubes. Flies! Like a magic carpet. Turns fast, glides like a beuton. Grip is perfect!
On that grip, it’s clear Sikaflex EBT but I have modified how I texture it and the feedback (including my own experience) is that it’s spot on!
I’m glad I’ve been able to build Ian a mat. It’s been a while and this is just right for what he will get over the winter.
It was great to get Ian over although it was a flying visit. We were lucky enough to get a couple of sessions in too. A shame it was so small as we have an intuition on party waves but still great fun surfing with Mark “Tom” Underwood one day and my son, Webbo, the next.
Here’s a few party waves from 2016 anyho…
Great morning that!
PS Follow Ian on Instagram @piskian.