What He Rode: Mick Fanning

Darren Handley breaks down the board Fanning rode at the Rip Curl Pro Portugal

No one was stopping Mick in Portugal once he knew what'd it take to stay in the Title race. Photo: ASP
No one was stopping Mick in Portugal once he knew what’d it take to stay in the Title race. Photo: ASP

Headed into Portugal, Mick Fanning’s World Title chances were slim, needing two of the world’s best to self-combust in order to be able to say there was even a chance. They did, and he rode that momentum, along with the following board, to his third event win of the year. Darren Handley walks us through the dimensions of and backstory behind the board Mick Fanning rode to victory at the Rip Curl Pro Portugal.

MICK FANNING
HEIGHT: 5’10″ (177 cm)
WEIGHT: 161 lbs (73 kgs)

MODEL: Duck’s Nuts
SHAPER: Darren Handley
TAIL: Pin
LENGTH: 5’10”
WIDTH: 18.75″
THICKNESS: 2.25″
VOLUME: 26.21L
TAIL WIDTH: 14.3/8″
NOSE WIDTH: 12.75″
CONCAVE: Single to double
GLASSING: 4oz. top and bottom with a carbon strip bottom and carbon tail, sanded super light.

Tell me about this board Mick rode in Portugal:
This was actually a board he ordered for Trestles. It was a copy of what Steph rode, but Mick thought it was a bit too thick for the conditions at Lowers. But he thought it was good in the barrel, so he rode it in Portugal.

How much R&D went into this design?
The Duck’s Nuts (Aussie slang for the best) is all about the rocker. It has a lot of tail lift and we’ve gotten to the point where Mick and I can work together to alter the general shape for different events. It was years in the making to get it just right. We’re always working on it between events to ensure that it’s perfect for the upcoming contest.

You mentioned that it was a very high-performance surfboard. Would you recommend this model board for your average surfer?
The Duck’s Nuts is indeed a high-performance model. When the waves get good, this is the board you want. We’ve been tweaking it a little bit by giving it a slightly wider nose and making it slightly smaller, which actually makes it a bit more accessible for everyday surfers. When the waves do get good though, this is the board you want.

How involved was Mick in the design of this model?
Very involved. We just talked yesterday about what he wants for his Hawaii quiver actually. He brings lots of ideas to the shaping room and we’re always in touch via email when he’s on the road. He’s more involved than most people would think. When the waves are bad, he’ll actually come into the shaping room and shape his own boards. It’s a great relationship. With any luck, he’ll win the world title out at Pipe and we can talk again.