Every now and then a customer pops up on the waiting list who is a subscriber to the pre-mainstream approach to mat surfing of keeping your head down. No fuss. Low key mat. Just go surfing.
San Diego's Barry Palmatier is one of those people. He got in touch asking for a mat to ride heavy and hollow waves. It didn't take a great deal of chit-chat to come to the conclusion that a Nouveau Racer was the way forward.
"What colours do you want mat?"
"What about the grip?"
And the name? Well, it had to be "Top Secret" obviously!
I know it doesn't look it but these are actually colour photos!
So then, Top Secret is a 200/70 build with free rocker. She's a free breather to up the responsiveness and has Puraflex 40 grip. The front corners have also been gripped to help Barry to pull her under heavy sets.
You might see Barry if you surf around SD. If you do, the password is "the mats are flying in the fall." In fact, he's keen to meet other mat surfers so if you want to get in touch with him, give me a shout and I can pass on details.
Have fun Barry!
Word from Barry. Top Secret has landed:
I got it Friday, and have been meaning to write and let you know.
I am THRILLED with the mat!!! It's exactly what I was looking for.
I haven't had a chance to ride it yet....Saturday was small junk, no form and I didn't even want to spoil the experience by taking it out in crappy surf.
Sunday the swell came up and it was really good size off the beach, but closed out. I could have gone down to the Sloughs (google it) where it was breaking at first notch (12 to 15ft faces) but I was short on time due to my daughter having a flying lesson at noon. I would have to be out of the water and ready to drive her out by 10 am, which is really not possible when surfing the sloughs. It's a long walk down to the river mouth and then a loooooong difficult paddle out.
Now, it's raining in San Diego, so I will probably have to wait for the weekend to give it a try...
I'm really looking forward to riding it!
Super thanks for the mat...I can tell it's going to be exactly what I needed for hollow days.
Barry has managed to get some waves. Seems pleased.
I got to ride top secret for the first time today. Mixed south swell, foot or two over head on the sets..very hollow, breaking hard in shallow water. WOW what a mat! First wave was a heavy late takeoff left, that would have put me out in the flats watching the shoulder peal away on any other mat. Top secret pulled in nicely delivering up a beautiful in n out barrel with quick exit and down the line speed run. I'm so stoked right now, I can hardly wait to get more. I love the way it rides, and I don't feel like I really have it dialed in yet. Super thanks for the mat, the wait was definitely worth it.
I really like it. At first I was concerned the deck would be a little slippery. It felt that way with a flat hand on the deck while walking out, but once I hopped on all my concerns were gone. Very comfortable, and it stays put nicely. I ride with low inflation 180 deg before firm, which can make it difficult to keep under you, but it was no problem.
Super happy with this mat!