Where Big-Wave Surfing and Yachting Converge
By CHRIS MUSELER NEWPORT, R.I.
The yacht designer Juan Kouyoumdjian is understandably excited about his latest creation, Mar Mostro, a 70-foot carbon fiber racing sailboat he hopes will win the Volvo Ocean Race for a third consecutive time in the fall.
But last week, he mostly wanted to talk about the sleek black-and-red 13-foot stand-up paddleboard he designed with the big-wave surfer Laird Hamilton.
The Mar Mostro was to leave Sunday for England in the Transatlantic Race 2011, part of its preparation for the late October start of the around-the-world race. And last week, Kouyoumdjian and Hamilton unveiled two prototypes of their stand-up paddleboard, or SUP, in Narragansett Bay.
The unlikely collaborators were matched by marketing executives at Puma Ocean Racing as part of their water sports product-development program. The charge was to create a performance board that Hamilton can use to promote the sport at various Volvo stopovers.