After braving Hawaii, Idaho, and even New York, the new age surfer is taking on a new kind of challenge — a race against a sailboat. In a new video from Hurley, the hydrofoil extraordinaire challenged famous sailor John Florence to a race on the open water. “Now that I’ve pushed myself by myself so many times, the next challenge would be to see how I compare to another craft,” Lenny said in the video. “Challenging myself to a sailboat would be cool.”
Last month, Lenny came to New York for a taste of East Coast waters. Although East Coast surfers are generally met with characteristic summer flatness, the big wave rider was unfazed.
Lenny made a trip New York’s Long Island to partake in events at the Hurley Surf Club in Long Beach — but he couldn’t resist taking the hydrofoil out for a ride across the Atlantic. In a video posted on Instagram, Lenny rides a downwinder as he explains to the cameraman that “[the board] measures 3 feet, 8 inches and has a Nash hydrofoil, the perfect combination for a flat day in New York.”
A demo video captures Lenny riding further out in the ocean, with a boat providing some wake for added surfing antics.
Lenny performed an amazing feat this spring, riding 50 miles on his hydrofoil surfboard across the Alenuihāhā Channel — including some of Hawaii’s most dangerous waters. It stands as his longest and most impressive hydrofoil ride to date, and it was all for a good cause — to help clean up the Hawaiian islands.
Just a month ago, Kai Lenny tested his hydrofoil board on a river in Idaho, becoming the first hydrofoil river surfer in history. Adding to his already impressive résumé, the surfer also invented the hydrofoil boogie board by fixing a hydrofoil to a traditional boogie board so that he could stay in the water shortly after breaking his ankle.
The athlete boasts quite the variety of water skills, including SUP surfing, big wave surfing, windsurfing, and kitesurfing — but his claim to fame is becoming more hydrofoil-centric as he travels the country and puts on surprising performances.
A hydrofoil board is essentially a standard surfboard with a hydrofoil hull fixed underneath that causes the board to lift up out of the water. This feature allows surfers to glide above the waves, helps the board move faster, maintains momentum, and eliminates choppy conditions. Foilboards give surfers the unique opportunity to continuously navigate waves without having to get off and paddle.
Regardless of conditions, the surfer seems to be having a blast, and we can only wonder where he will head with his foilboard next.
Lenny continues to document his journeys on Instagram.
Update: Lenny recently took on a sailboat in his latest adventurous feat, as documented in a new video.
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- Watch Kai Lenny and Jaime O’Brien hydrofoil big waves at Oahu’s Banzai Pipeline
- Kai Lenny shows Steve Aoki how to ride a hydrofoil surfboard