Say hello to G-Mat 144 (AKA "Spitfire"). She is a 200/70 Ute built for Aussie mat surfer, Tom Carroll.
I've been eyeing this build as it's crept up with an air of excitement. Doing what I do, I have the privilege of building surfcraft for a number of people who have influenced my surfing over the years and this is one of those times. I have never been a stand up surfer, but as a youngster, Tom Carroll's powerful, direct, no bullshit approach to riding waves had a huge impact on me.
I know what you're thinking.... That video looks just like my kneeboard surfing, right?! :D
Anyway, Tom has a pretty open mind when it comes to riding waves being well known for ripping on his SUP these days as well as charging monsters tow surfing. Part of his open mind has seen him find the surfmat. I'm sure many people will have seen the images of Tom riding a Krypt mat at Uluwatu so there is no doubt that he has an aptitude for it.
We managed to get Tom's trademark sash into the design on the deck. We talked about the logo and settled on a bit of bling with a holo effect using glitter in clear sealant. My friends Matt and Ian over at Warpmats have been messing about with this for a bit. It gives an interesting finish.
As you can see from the shot below, Tom has opted to have his initials below the G on the central pontoon. Being a custom G-Mat, Spitfires needs a number which has been set in to the deck towards the back right corner.
Spitfire has set sail for Down-Under and should be there really soon. One thing I've learned over the past few weeks communication is that Tom gets EVERYWHERE so hopefully it won't be too long before he and Spitfire can hook up.
It's been a real honour for me building Spitfire for Tom. With his experience as a waterman, I'm really excited to see where he takes the mat.
Some pics of Tom from Ben Chipper over in Sydney.
Tom says he's off to France and Spain and Spitfire is going along too. Lets just hope the Atlantic can send some waves.