Happy 80th George Greenough.
The first time I met George, he showed me all these fins he had under his bed. He explained the flex ratio differed by how the glass was laid up. I never knew this info, and I was captivated sitting with him in his pyramid house, answering my questions with his famous “nothing ventured, nothing gained.” statement.
For reference, This was 1991, and I had just won the biggest ASP comp of my life, so I was flying high. I asked about the mat and going for a surf on it. He scoffed and said, “you can’t do that; that would be bad for your image, kid.” Ha! I loved it and retorted, “bring on the bad image then’.
We went to the Pass him heckling me the whole way about it. He swam out on his mat, immediately caught a wave, and ripped right by me, going a thousand. I caught a few fun little waves, found it tough to duck dive, then when I thought I might get the hang of it, this girl cut me off, yelled at me and called me a kook… Ahem, excuse me?
… I asked a 10-year-old Daniel Thompson @tomo_surfboards if I could politely have a quick go on his 5’4. I was surprised how good the little thing went! This gave me the idea for a smaller, wider board that worked insane in small, subpar conditions. and turned out a massive hit for @xanadu_surf.
When we got back to George’s he sold me a carbon fibre panel from 3m that had 100 layers of glass pressed and heated in a super oven. It was expensive. Daniel's dad Mark foiled the fin for me with a tungsten blade. I have used it all over the world in so many types of boards and waves. I still have it, and it works insanely.
There were many other things I learned, so I took notes and still have those too. It was so rad and showed me firsthand why and how influential and inspirational George Greenough is to surfing. I was fortunate to have ruined my image this way.
Happy 80th George-keep it rolling please.