The Pugsley Board Review with Hannah Bristow!
“The Pugsley” Surfboard Review
I recently became a team rider for Fitzroy Surfboards, a rad company from the North East England, and we’ve been working on a surfboard shape together. Anyone who knows me, knows that I have a little thing called “new surfboard phobia”. It’s probably not a real thing but instead of being super excited when I get a new board, I get super nervous and worried that I just wont be able to surf it!
My main concerns are:
- I’m going to sink when I get on the surfboard
- It won’t move when I paddle
- I won’t be able to catch waves or stand up
- I won’t be able to turn it
- I just won’t be able to surf it and will end up on Kook Slams. Daily.
So when Simon at Fitzroy asked me what dimensions I ride, I looked at him with a blank expression and handed him a battered-to-within-an-inch-of-its-life surfboard. I’d been given the board by my Pro Surfer friend, Sara Taylor, from California. She’d left it with me after she surfed all her European comps on it and it was about 4 litres less than what I had usually surfed and with future fins. It had kind of changed my surfing so I said “something similar to this….but not.” Easy, right?
So Simon just took control and created “The Pugsley”. I called it “The Pugsley” after my favourite travel companion/dog shaped pillow, that was won for me at Santa Monica Pier a year ago. He travels the world with me and even though I once, accidently left him at LAX after going through security and then nearly missed my flight home by running back to lost and found - he’s never held it against me.
My main goal with The Pugsley was that I just want to be able to catch a bunch of waves and do some fun turns (maybe get a barrel or two) and then make sure its high enough performance for surf comps…. I’m sure surfboard shapers love it when you ask for this.
After unwrapping it in Tenerife and seeing Ryanair hadn’t destroyed it before it had even got in the water, I went straight in at a head high, shallow, right-hand reef break.
The only aim of the surf was to not break the board and try and catch a wave on it....aim low guys, aim low. Though I’m serious when I say this, once I got it in the water, it paddled like a DREAM. I lived in Tenerife for 7 years so its like my home break and me and my friend had this perfect wave to ourselves, so I really got to try out the board and it was LIGHTENING. Catching the waves was a breeze and it was so easy to turn, like a skateboard but super predictable. I didn’t have to get used to the board, it just worked. THANK GOD. I was so nervous on that first surf as I realised just as I was getting in the water, I’d just winged it when Simon asked me what I wanted and just said “I trust you to shape a winner, crack on!”. It was probably the best idea to let him have the input rather than me!
So, here’s a bit of a surfboard review:
“The Pugsley” is great in waves ranging from knee to waist high, up to overhead and a half . Anything bigger and I feel like he kind of gets scared and slides down the face….trust me, I tried it! It was still pretty fun though. Forehand carves and tail slides were a breeze but my backhand turns just became way more sharp and so much more flow between them (FYI still not Kelly Slater) and I didn’t have to pump off the bottom. The board paddles so well and paddles into waves super easy. I’ve also surfed it on slabs and taken quite a few beatings on shallow reef breaks….and its still standing. Please note: The Puglsey is not indestructible and does not like it if you fall straight on to dry reef. This has also been tried in the name of “science”.
I love riding this board with future fins and it has enough volume in the nose and where the shoulders are so it paddles well but its pulled in at the tail and with sharp rails so it makes it so easy to turn. That was my main goal, to have a board that’s super easy to turn as I have such a heavy back foot when I surf! I also rode this board in a QS competition and then in a free surf actually got the barrel of my life…though no one got it on camera, I’m still saying it counts though.
If you want a magic board that you can surf in everything and that is easy to paddle into waves and turn….this is it!
Written By Hannah Bristow
If you want to follow the fast and crazy world of Fitzroy's team rider Hannah Bristow follow this link!! CLICK HERE and you will find her website where you can watch videos, read her blog and follow Hannah around the world on her adventures.
The Pugsley can be found on our surfboard product page and for more information please don't hesitate to get in touch - email@example.com
Fitzroy Surf Co.