Foil Drive Podcast | Ep 13 | M2O Film Behind the Scenes with Paul Cooper

Welcome to another episode of the Foil Drive Podcast! I'm thrilled to share this incredible experience from Paul Cooper's hometown in Hawaii, where we embarked on an unforgettable Foil Drive project. We achieved something unprecedented: traveling from Molokai to Oahu on our Foil Drive prone boards. This was the longest voyage ever attempted on a Foil Drive unit, and we’re here to debrief the journey, from preparation to the crossing itself, and how we felt afterward.

The Beginning of an Epic Week

The adventure began with a stroke of luck. Upon arrival, I caught the tail end of a period marked by weeks of poor conditions. The day I arrived was a bit onshore with some swell, but by the next day, the South Shore boasted waves well over six feet—an unusual sight. Despite the grey skies and persistent rain, we had a solid setup for our upcoming adventure.

Paul and I kicked off the week by hitting a now-popular Foil Drive spot on Waikiki, known for its challenging swells that are unachievable by prone surfers. The unique feature of this spot is the massive lumps of swell that come from afar, making it difficult for prone surfers to sit in the right spot. With our Foil Drives, we effortlessly glided over these swells, reminiscent of backcountry snowboarding on huge, rolling hills. It was an exhilarating warm-up for what was to come.

A Week of Perfect Conditions

The conditions kept improving throughout the week, defying expectations. Initially, it seemed like the first day of surfing would be the peak, but every day saw bigger, cleaner, and more perfect waves. This exceptional run of swell was a rare treat. With the approaching crossing day, the winds shifted to ideal conditions—trade winds that were perfect for our journey.

Preparing for the Crossing

Despite being known for his Foil Drive skills, Paul admitted to his limited downwind experience. His time was primarily spent winging, which consumed his focus and prevented him from diving deep into downwinding. However, he was determined to embrace the challenge. The key to success, he found, was in understanding and reading the bumps and being proficient in popping up on the Foil Drive.

As the big day approached, our team came together. We had an incredible boat captain, a top-tier production crew, and seasoned watermen like Jacko and Kahi, making for a strong and supportive group.

The Journey Across the Channel

The crossing itself was beyond thrilling. The initial excitement had us all ripping turns and enjoying the ride. The channel, known for its gnarly conditions, presented a series of unique challenges. From navigating massive swells to dealing with intense currents, it felt like experiencing five different types of runs in one journey.

Despite initial nerves, Paul and the team pushed through, relying on each other’s strengths and experiences. One remarkable aspect of the crossing was the varying conditions—one moment it felt like a skate park with peak-like wind bumps, the next it was a smoother ride closer to land. This diversity in conditions made the journey even more exhilarating.

Overcoming Challenges and Embracing the Moment

Throughout the crossing, there were moments of intense focus and physical strain. I remember overheating from the relentless sun and taking quick dips to cool off. Hydration and energy were crucial, and my camel pack with hydration mix and a last-minute energy gel proved to be lifesavers. Paul's preparation and pacing paid off, allowing him to complete the journey without major cramps or issues.

One humorous moment involved the superstitious ban on bananas on boats, which I unknowingly broke. Despite the initial alarm from the crew, we had a smooth and successful crossing.

A Personal Triumph

Completing the crossing was a personal triumph for me, a testament to the power of the Foil Drive Assist in achieving what seemed impossible. The feeling of stepping off on Oahu, having done it in one shot, was indescribable. It was a journey marked by incredible teamwork, personal growth, and unforgettable experiences.

Looking Ahead

We captured some of the best foiling footage ever, and we can't wait to share it with the world. The film will be released around the time of the M2O races in July, showcasing our adventure and the incredible potential of the Foil Drive.

Stay tuned for more updates and join us in celebrating this remarkable journey. Thank you for being part of the Foil Drive community, and we look forward to sharing more epic adventures with you soon!



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