Board: Fanatic ProWave LTD 8’9″ Width: 30.5″ Volume: 120 L Weight: 17.5 lbs. Retail Price: $1,699
Tester: Eddy Patricelli, 175 lbs. Test Location: Troncones, Mexico Test Conditions: 4-8′ slow, mushy waves
Bottom Line: Forget the board’s “Pro” moniker. Surprisingly stable, speedy and maneuverable for average riders. Not necessarily a first wave SUP, but a fantastic step up board for advancing SUP surfers, real-world wave locales and beyond.
What I Liked: Friendly fun. I’m no pro. I’m a husband and father. My SUP sessions are rare, entail rusty skills, a ticking clock and riding when stars align at home more so than on the water. So at a glance, a “ProWave LTD” SUP – targeting great waves and great riders – would not seem a good fit for me. Boy was I wrong. That is, at least in the ProWave’s 8’9” sizing. I found its standing area as stable underfoot as shorter, wider SUPs of equal volume. And unlike stubby shapes I’ve ridden in the past, the ProWave offered impressive glide – in part thanks to its length – that made catching waves rather effortless. Its pointed nose also made punching out over white water easier (less bucking) than its snub-nosed rivals. But the ProWave’s real rewards were on a wave. Its aggressive tail rocker delivered snappiness and carving confidence that belied its 120 liters of volume, and offered acceleration out of turns that encouraged me to attack more critical sections of the wave. And that’s what I liked most: The board’s carving rewards were so dramatic in the wave’s pocket it coaxed me to stay in the pocket, silence my fears, and ride closer to the lip.
What I Didn’t Like: While the standing area around the board’s handle is stable, step back to pivot turn and it’s tippier than stubby shapes of equal volume. The solution – don’t step back as aggressively – helps alleviate some (read: not all) of the instability.
I Would Own This Board Because: It encourages progression without frustration, and better, with no risk of outgrowing it. Yes, the ProWave LTD 8’9” challenged me. But in the right ways, and with big, accessible rewards.
The Fanatic ProWave LTD 8’9” Best Suits: Those who are already catching waves and anxious to (pick one) carve, slash, rip, and shred them. Anyone looking for a friendly step up board with an unbelievably long runway for improvement.
Availability: In stock, call 888 509 4210. Other ProWave LTD sizes available: 7’6″, 8’0″, 8’5″
Eddy Patricelli has been wave SUPing for six years. He also loves to windsurf, which is possible on Fanatic ProWave LTD 8’9″ model. See his best video tip for getting your kid hooked on windsurfing here.