The Starboard photo shoot after the event was a complete adventure. We had two boats and the plan was to shoot at different islands. New Caledonia is such a unique place for that as it is surrounded by reefs. It was a great idea, but let’s just say that nothing went according to plan! First of all, all the board bags looked alike, and we brought along two bags out of Remi’s truck. One of them though was filled with test boards and not the shoot boards we needed. Oh no! It turned out Remi had the correct bags ready to go on top of the pile but somehow one of the riders had pulled out the bags looking for something and repacked them in a different order! We learned this after we did our 20 minute bumpy boat ride to the first island! Changing the helicopter appointment was not an option so Tristan and the captain had to act quickly and floored it back to Noumea to go and get the right board bags, all unbeknown to JC. Forty minutes later, just as we saw the helicopter appear on the horizon, the speedboat also arrived, just in time to get the shoot going! After this initial setback, we managed to get ourselves sorted and started shooting, sailing above this beautiful reef and swapping boards between the team riders. It was already gorgeous from the water, but became even more mind blowing with sea turtles and stingrays coming into the shot. That was actually the funniest part of the shoot. After that we sailed to different reefs and islands and made mini pit stops to shoot. It was work because it isn’t easy to swap gear in the water, but at the same time it was also vacation, because man, it was really beautiful!
In the end I think we almost sailed in a giant circle and ended the whole trip back at Ansa Vata where we had the slalom contest. I did give one of the guys my gear because I was way too powered on the 7.8m to sail all the way back! Overall, logistically it was challenging, but looking back at the pictures and laughing at the bloopers of the day, it was a truly memorable shoot!