Siobhan Heads to Hawaii

G-Mat 165 is a G-Mat Nouveau Racer heading off to hook up with Craig Jerome in Hawaii.

She is a 200/70 wheezer with free-rocker made to eat up decent waves with some push but with some scope built in to the bottom end to open her up in more average conditions too.

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Craig has named his new mat Siobhan. Funnily enough, that’s what I was going to be called had I been a girl, so I have a natural soft-spot for this one.

G-Mat 165 Craig Jerome Surfmat G-Mat Hawaii

Craig says there’s a bit of solid swell on the wat so looking forward to seeing how he and his new ride get on with that.

Have fun you two!!!

Cheers

G

G-Mat 165 Craig Jerome Surfmat G-Mat Hawaii

G-Mat 157 - Da Bolt!

Say hello to “Da Bolt”, a 200/70 Nouveau Racer built for Michael Kennedy.

G-Mat 157 Surfmat Michael Kennedy Da Bolt

Da Bolt is Michael’s tribute to one of mat surfing’s greats; the sorely missed Eric “Da Bolt” Bridges. I’ll let Michael’s words do the talking:

“A few years ago I was chatting with Eric Bridges here on FB. He was retiring and I was telling him how envious I was. His simple plan was to surf with his mates and fish for sambos. Such a simple plan that sounded like so much fun.

Life doesn't always turn out the way we plan. Losing Eric was devastating on many levels. It was like in my mind I was vicariously living his life...no work...play every day with your friends. There was hope as I plowed through another 50-60 hour work week. Eric was proof there was light at the end of the tunnel. Suffice to say the events that transpired shattered all of that.

So how do you pick up those shattered pieces and make them into something good again? Not really sure but my first thought when I began designing my new G-Mat was to pay tribute to Eric with it. Kind of like he's along for the ride in spirit. Its name is "Da Bolt". 

With much Aloha Eric.”

G-Mat 157 Surfmat Michael Kennedy Da Bolt

It’s been an honour o be able to play my part in this. Eric was a great guy!

So, “Da Bolt” will be heading off to Hawaii to team up with Michael. She is built with solid winter waves in mind so will be just the ticket for what looks like a winter of pretty big surf!

Cheers

G

#ericwouldgo

G-Mat 157 Surfmat Michael Kennedy Da Bolt

G-Mat 134 - Making America Inflate Again!

G-Mat 134 Alan Whitsett Glory Stars and Stripes Surfmat

Meet "Glory", a G-Mat Nouveau Racer heading off to Santa Cruz. Glory is the new steed of Alan Whitsett, a mat surfer with a penchant for big and heavy waves.  Alan asked for a pretty distinctive design which, after a little collaboration, we hit bang on. 

Here's what Alan had to say about the design:

"I'm probably the happiest when I'm in the water and my humor and humanity is reflected most...it seems to me that the world needs to see that America still has goodness in it...the abstract use of the star images rather than rigid rows is whimsical...I want to be the ambassador that makes people laugh and smile, to focus on our commonalities rather than our differences." The name "Glory", ha...well it's kind of complicated...a bit personal and a bit political keeping in mind the current regime in Washington."

G-Mat 134 Alan Whitsett Glory Stars and Stripes Surfmat
G-Mat 134 Alan Whitsett Glory Stars and Stripes Surfmat

"My first waves were ridden on a mat in 1958...I was four. When I first paddled out last year on my 4th Gear Flyer at Steamer Lane...and caught that first wave...I remembered how glorious I felt as a four year old...sliding across the water, laughing, giggling, wanting more. The mat for me is a "new-found Glory", a "coming home" if you will. The flag design came after that realization...it just made sense to combine my sense of glory with our flag "Old Glory"

G-Mat 134 Alan Whitsett Glory Stars and Stripes Surfmat

So there you have it. Pretty distinctive mat for a pretty distinctive fella. Glory is a 200/70 set-up built as a free-breather with free elastic rocker and gripped with Puraflex 40. Down the line speed is the go! 

Alan is heading off on a trip to San Jose del Cabo early next month so a Nouveau Racer seems a pretty good pick if things are firing over there. I'm sure Alan will turn a few heads! Hopefully we'll get some stories and pics.

Cheers

G

G-Mat 134 Alan Whitsett Glory Stars and Stripes Surfmat

Och Aye! It's Wee Jock McAye!

This is G-Mat 130 (AKA "Jock McAye"), a Nouveau Racer making her way north to the classy reefs and slabs of the Scottish North Coast.

G-Mat 130 Surfmat Surf mat

Jock has been built for Steve Griffin, an ex-pat Welshman who it seems has a taste for heavy surf.

I love building mats for people like Steve. He is one of those highly experienced surfers who have given mats a go and really made the commitment to learn the art. In with both fins if you like!

G-Mat 130 Surfmat Surf mat

So a bit more on Jock McAye. She is a 200/70 construction with positive rocker to help add a surety to turns in the pocket. Being built with glassy waves in mind, Steve has gone for a free-breather to enhance the sensitivity and responsiveness.

G-Mat 130 Surfmat Surf mat
G-Mat 130 Surfmat Surf mat

Steve has also opted for a Hestered valve to help to protect his boyish good looks (or that's what he said anyway). The grip is Puraflex 40 and the front corners have been covered to give that extra bit of security during duckdives, punchouts and maulings.

Steve has also gone for a cap and sweatshirt. Getting the design for these nailed nearly took as long planning the mat! Hopefully we'll get to see Steve modelling his new outfit.

I'm really looking forward to hearing about Steve's adventures with Jock McAye. This project has been a real pleasure.

Cheers

G


Update: 14/08/2017

Update from Steve:

Jock McAye flies! Doing the job he was designed for in head and a half clean faces. Truly amazing. I'm a very happy man. Two barrels, on one wave and making it out onto the shoulder, I think you could say holding a line. 😁

Thanks Graeme!

Great to hear. That's why I do this. 😊

Fun Sessions with Bryn and Tim

I had a really good time with with Tim Ciasto and Bryn Dampney on the South Coast of Cornwall near the Devon border. Tim had his camera. Saturday was a session with just me in the water (and a crowd of about 5895)  on my Chino Racer. It had a little grunt (although I was pretty over-gunned). It was also super busy and hugely frustrating. Still, I managed to snag a few away from the pack on my favourite left which was bumpy but fun.

On Sunday, Bryn joined me on the same reef. The waves were really nice early doors and beautifully quiet when we arrived. 

The waves dropped a bit in quality as the tide pushed and Tim turned up with his camera so he definitely missed the best of it but I'm still pretty pleased with what he got. ☺️

It was nice getting the Bodybag out for a couple at the end, although Bodysurfing is probably best done before, not after a 2 1/2 hour session!  

All good fun. Tim has been sniffing around Cornwall of late and will be back. It would be good to get a few more mat riders together for his return.

Cheers

G

Evolution - Small Tweeks

Meet G-Mat 110 (AKA "Steady Eddie").

G-Mat 110 Surfmat Surf mat Nouveau Racer 1564

Eddie is a tweaked Nouveau Racer. For those unfamiliar with it, the Nouveau Racer is a 4 pontoon surfmat with lower volume and comparatively round corners and notable concave designed for solid surf. A number of riders, including myself, have ridden this design in good waves around the globe with the feedback being pretty consistent... It takes a good wave to get going but once you do the mat is very dependable and maintains a good degree of glide for its size.

That's the real trick: building a mat that achieves hold without just bogging.

G-Mat 110 Surfmat Surf mat Nouveau Racer 544

I did notice one thing that I wanted to change, however. On really sizeable days, I was having to kick like crazy to get in to waves, given the mat's smaller profile. This resulted in some pretty hairy drops! Given that, I revisited the design and added a little more length (just a smidgeon). This runs the risk of slippage (there is a goldilocks zone when it comes to aspect ratios) so I needed to up the hold. 

G-Mat 110 Surfmat Surf mat Nouveau Racer 14785

A very slight alteration of the I-Beam positions to slightly enhance the concave has done the trick. The results so far? A mat that behaves as before but gets going a little earlier.

G

 

G-Mat 110 Surfmat Surf mat Nouveau Racer 65497

Introducing the Nouveau Racer - Haven't We Been Here Before?!

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am proud to formally announce the Nouveau Racer. As you can probably tell, this design has been born out of the Chino Racer to be, well, what the Chino Racer was meant to be!

What happened was this; I designed the Chino Racer with good sized waves in mind and as a mat, it loves a good wave, giving natural hold and stability. The thing is, the feedback from the owners was that they couldn't believe the range of waves their mats were going in. Even a couple of foot would get the Chino Racer flying, as long as there was a bit of shape to it. Of course these mats were also eating up good sized waves but there turned out to be a point where it just felt like a bit too much mat!

The Nouveau Racer was born out of this. The I-beams are the same height as a Chino Racer but every thing else is pulled in giving a comparatively smaller mat with more depth to its length and beam, as well as a slightly enhanced concave. What we have then is lift and hold in a fast, manoeuvrable mat.

The original re-workings went to Bob Booth in North Cornwall and Henry Marfleet. Henry took his to G-Land and rode her in some pretty heavy conditions so it it safe to say that this design is tested! The latest is built for Jamie McClellan for his impending trip to the US West Coast. She is called the Black Mat. I'm not sure what inspired the name.

Henry Marfleet, G-Land

Jamie McClellan's "Black Mat"

I've updated all the mat information on the site to include the Nouveau Racer. Keep in mind of course, these are custom mats so are still each scaled to the individual rider.

Any questions, just ask in the comments below.

Cheers

G