During their round the world trip in 2010, Lesley and Kelly converted from bodyboarding to surfing and both bought surfboards in Bali.From there they traveled to New Zealand, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Equador and down to Peru.
Peru is home to one of the longest left waves in the world but also home to one of the biggest rip currents in the world.On a morning in Pacasmayo, Lesley decided to take Kelly’s board and go out for a long walk to the peak where he paddled out.On the second wave the leash snapped and due to the heavy rip currents, the board was taken out to sea.Lesley was unable to catch up with the board, so started a 45 min paddle back to shore.Now he had to explain to Kelly that he had simply lost her board.He promised her though that he would make it up to her and replace it with something special.
After several years and 2 daughters later they have made some life changing decisions.They decided to move to J Bay, South Africa where they met and became good friends with Hugh Thompson. Lesley’s promise to Kelly was never forgotten, and when good friend and top surfboard laminator Yan Baldwick visited for a few months from France, Lesley decided it would be a great idea to honour his promise with a collaboration between one of the best shapers in South Africa and an international laminator at the top of his game.
Hugh was asked to shape something special for Kelly and he had no hesitation in coming up with a classic Mini Mal design.Hand shaped in his shaping bay, Hugh shaped a custom 7’0 x 21 1/2 x 2 3/4 traditional Mini Mal.
Using top South African shaper Mikey Meyer’s shaping bay, Yan converted the blank into a piece of art using resin tinting techniques he had specialised in France.The beauty about resin tinting is its unpredictability.No matter how precise your technique is, it is impossible to replicate a pattern.Every characteristic of the design is unique.Kelly wanted an abstract design and Yan delivered something truly magnificent.
To bring out the colours of Hugh and Yan’s creation, Moana Glasshouse in St Francis was tasked with the high end polishing. Five hours of dedication to the craft brought out a mirror like reflective sheen to the board.
Now Kelly has a board, not only shaped, glassed and polished by some of the best in the business, but by great friends as well.