Switch on the Fly
Photos: Bill Doster and Bryan Soderlind
New surf-specific boat technology allows for variety galore.
Within a few short months, the surf game has taken leaps and bounds in the direction of progression. While there are numerous checks in the “pros” category for having the technology on board to switch surf waves at the push of a button, we have been having the most fun transferring from one side to the other. We checked in with Brian Grubb and Jeff McKee to get some advice on how to carry out the newest trick in wakesurfing.
Frontside Transfer with Brian Grubb
When doing the toeside (or frontside) wave transfer, previously near-impossible prior to the Malibu Surf Gate, start back on the wave so you can build speed toward the boat for the transfer. When you get the signal that the wave is starting to switch, start pumping to gain speed. Time your last bottom turn up through the face right before the wave closes out. As you can see in the photos, I get a good push off my toeside rail up the face, as I start the transfer to generate enough speed to make it across to the other wave. I try to get the nose of my board up on top of the white water like I’m doing a floater. As I go across the top of the wave, I want my board to be flat, so it glides over the white water and down into the next wave that is starting to form. As I come down off the top, I get on my heelside edge as soon as I can to start generating speed back toward the boat to catch the wave on my backside. It’s best to think about this transfer as basically a big edge change from your toeside edge to heelside edge as you transfer waves. Remember, timing is everything on this transfer. If you don’t start the transfer soon enough, you will get closed out. And, if you go too early, you will get to the other side before the new wave forms. If you get it once and figure out the timing, you’ll land it every time! - Brian Grubb
Backside Transfer with Jeff McKee
The transfer from surfing backside to frontside is all about timing and good communication between the surfer and the driver. With the new Nautique Surf System, the wave can switch in a matter of seconds, so you have to be on your game. I like to start deep in the wave (farther from the boat) and then signal for the driver to press the button, as I pump and gain speed toward the back of the boat. As you see the boat begin to lean the opposite direction, initiate your heel edge, and cross over the rooster tail. The closer you can get to the back (obviously within reason) of the boat, the easier the transfer will be, as the distance between the waves is narrower at that point. Try to stay as centered as possible over your board as you make the switch, and drop down into the wave straight back to your toeside edge to stay with the wave. Celebrate within reason and repeat. – Jeff McKee