Flatwater speed comparison test of these 6 unlimited SUP race boards:
Listed in order from fastest to slowest in test results:
18′ x 25″ Ohana
17’6″ x 25 1/8″ Dennis Pang
16′ x 28.5″ Standamaran SIC S-16
17’4″ x 26 1/2″ SIC Bullet
18′ x 26″ Bark
17′ x 26 3/4″ Naish Glide
Is lighter really faster? Weight comparison test
Unlimited race board comparison- planing vs. displacement hulls
See the discussion of this test on the Standupzone
Run 1 times were with the wind and Run 2 times are going back upwind, so that’s why Run 2 times are slower.
Regarding which boards we are used to, these boards are usually used/ owned by:
Here are some of my thoughts:
I expected the standamaran to do well upwind with the smooth entry but in the test it did not compare well in the upwind legs. Why? I’m not sure but my theory is that the wakes coming from both tips and intersecting at the center of the board create a wave that adds drag at higher speeds and limits the top speed. Going into the wind the small chops might exaggerate this effect. I’m not sure though, just a theory.
At normal speeds (not sprinting) the standamaran seems to have very low friction and it takes very little to maintain a speed of around 5 mph.
All the boards have pros and cons and which board will be fastest depends on the paddler and the conditions. So why were some boards faster than others? There are so many variables and to try narrow it down to just the width is just not realistic even if the numbers seem to indicate that. I have tested two 12’6 prototypes with identical length and width with the main difference being the rocker and entry and the board with more rocker was actually faster and had a cleaner entry. Regarding length, I know that most 14′ boards are significantly faster than most 12’6 boards and that most unlimited boards are faster than 14′ boards but at some point (over 16′ it seems to me) adding more length does not always translate into more speed.
Shaping a fast race board is more art than science, I think.
Paddler weight is important too, as the same board will have a different entry and exit depending on the weight of the rider, so the rocker line and volume have to match the rider weight