Mason Ho & Blair Conklin push PerfectSwell to create new waves
“A Wedge Affair,” is the new film project that takes Reef team riders Mason Ho and Blair Conklin to the BSR Surf Resort and let’s them play mad scientist with the wave settings. In the process they create four totally new waves.
The clip departs from typical glorified-chandelier-now-dubbed-an-air-section in that this one gets uber-detailed. Bill McFarland, the brain behind American Wave Machines’ PerfectSwell tech was on hand to custom dial the settings and create several unique new surf-able waves never before seen in the world of wave pools.
“The concept was to take the brain of Mason Ho, have him sketch out his “dream wedges,” and along with skim/soft/boog aficionado Mr. Conklin, bring them to life in Waco,” says Stab’s Morgan Williamson. “The folks at Perfect Swell wanted to display just how malleable and functional their system is.”
Bill McFarland and partner Miquel Lazaro came up with four new settings dreamt up by Mason and Blair. We know Mason loves odd waves, often choosing scrappy rock-crusted cover ups for long, lean peelers in crowded tropical locales.
Blair is known for charging The Wedge in Newport on skim and soft board, but he’s a 3X skimboard champion, so we know that’s where his heart lies. When WavePoolMag interviewed Blair back in March he spoke of the challenges of skimming a pool.
“At the Waco pool, there is no option to run from the edge of the pool and slide out to the wave,” Blair told us in an interview. “The only way to get into that wave other than paddling would be to acid drop from the eight-foot wall and tear every ligament in your body, but I’ll leave that up to Harry Bryant or Mason Ho. With that being said, I still had a blast riding my skimboard at Waco, and just ended up paddling onto the wave instead of running out to it. Paddling into a wave on a skimboard is less like paddling and more like swimming since the board has so little buoyancy.”
Wave #1. The Whacko Whacko Wedge
The Whacko Whacko is a wonky two-for-one that, instead of hugging the wall as every wave currently served up by American Wave Machines, breaks towards the shore. There’s a left and a right. Both barrel on the takeoff and wedge into a slight hip or spine. The spine is novel and to 97-percent of surfers, would be the end of the wave. However, Mase and Blair occupy surfing’s upper echelon and utilized the spine as a ramp, attempting to air into the residual wave behind it which occasionally turned into a little tube.
Wave #2. The W.A.C.O Wedge (We. Ain’t. Coming. Out)
This is the most familiar of the waves as it’s essentially just a bigger version of the original wedge. This version you can get deeper on and take off behind the peak for a fun backdoor vision. Mason wanted to name it the We Ain’t Coming Out, which if you’re familiar with the Branch Davidians, who were based out of Waco, actually has a bit more sinister backstory than the cute “we don’t want to come out of this tube” sentiment for which it stands.
Wave #3. The Butchered Barrel
The Butchered Barrel was a bit of a flop. Initially, we were trying to take the Freak Peak and tweak the massive ramp into a massive tube. Instead it turned into a bit of a skateparky spine. The boys had fun on it, but we used it the least and that’s because it just didn’t work all that well. If you’re at BSR and have the pool booked out, we recommend sending one of these to an unsuspecting friend. Or enemy.
Wave #4. The Sissy Sauce
After eight hours of testing, the Sissy Sauce was our pride and joy. The ramp itself sent Blair and Mase to meteoric heights. After tweaking the landing a bit, the two were blasting huge airs and landing straight into playful little tubes. “It’s like when you call the small guy biggy,” explains Mason. “That’s how the Sissy Sauce is, but that section’s going to fold people!” The Sissy Sauce was inspired by Rudy’s Sissy Sause, which after plenty of thought and tasting we’d decided was some of the best goddamn barbecue sauce in the Northern Hemisphere.
Just to reiterate, you can now order all four of these waves when you visit BSR Surf Resort. If you’re there for a surf, try one out.