The Board Room Surf Gear & Reviews

Christian Hosoi, UNIV collaborate to create Hammerhead surfboard

Pro surfers Benji Weatherley, Dylan Graves impressed with testing

“Whoa! What is that!?” This is the most common response when fellow surfers or skateboarders first witness the UNIV x Christian Hosoi Hammerhead surfboard. Of course, after explanation and examination, the initial response is most often followed by, “No way! That’s so rad!”

The UNIV x Hosoi Hammerhead surfboard collaboration was shaped by Christian Hosoi and James Addonizio in the UNIV Work Shop in Encinitas, California, as an homage not only to one of the most iconic skateboard shapes, but also to one of the coolest skateboarders ever, Christian Hosoi, whose style on a skateboard had a recognizable and powerful surf influence. “I love surfing,” says Hosoi. “The funny thing is, I’m not very good. I’ve surfed all over the world and I can visualize what I want to do on the board; I’m just more comfortable on a skateboard 10 feet in the air over cement,” he laughs.

The Hammerhead is a fully functioning four-fin surfboard that is a scaled-up replica of Hosoi’s famous skateboard design from the 1980s. “I used to cut boards out of foam core and stare at them,” says Hosoi. “This shape, and most importantly the Hammerhead nose, was custom made for grabbing and doing airs.”

 Benji Weatherley carves Christian Hosoi’s Hammerhead

Benji Weatherley carves Christian Hosoi’s Hammerhead. Photo by Julian Martin

The Hammerhead board measures in at 5’5” x 22” and is true to scale to the skateboard dimensions. Obviously, the initial Hammerhead design was created for skateboarding, so the biggest question after building the board was will it work? Will it surf?

 Yep, it works! Dylan Graves with a frontside grind

Yep, it works! Dylan Graves with a frontside grind. Photo by Julian Martin

The maiden voyage of the two hand-shaped Hammerhead boards took place in Hosoi’s hometown of Huntington Beach, California, with pro surfers Benji Weatherley and Dylan Graves doing the honors—and yes, the board worked. “I knew it was going to work,” said Weatherley. “But it exceeded my expectations in a big way. It’s super fast, and you can actually get it on rail and do cutbacks and everything you’d do on a standard shortboard. I was tripping on how good this thing goes.”

 Christian Hosoi and James Addonizio in the shaping bay.

Christian Hosoi and James Addonizio in the shaping bay; photo by Julian Martin

After the first surf session on the Hammerhead boards, Hosoi invited the surfers into his realm, the Vans skate park, and showed them what the Hammerhead skateboard is capable of—and that was a session full of double-overhead method airs, long boardslides, Smith grinds, and, of course, a big ol’ Christ air to wrap up the session.

 One of the greatest skateboarders ever, Christian Hosoi, shows this pack of surfers what the Hammerhead is all about

One of the greatest skateboarders ever, Christian Hosoi, shows this pack of surfers what the Hammerhead is all about. Photo courtesy UNIV

Surf and skate collectors are already champing at the bit to get their hands on a Hammerhead, but with a very limited number of boards being produced by UNIV, they’ll be in high demand, so good luck. Go to univbrand.com for more info.

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