What They Ride, All-Star edition: Ross Howatt and his CI Rocket wide
After a lengthy hiatus we are back with an OG goofy footed Vilano powerhouse, Ross Howatt. Ross was a little younger than me when I showed up on the scene back in the day but I would always see him out on the north side of town putting on an absolute power clinic even at 17 years old.
Over the years we ended up becoming good friends and going on an epic trip to Puerto Rico that will go down as one of my favorite trips of all time. We scored waves, partied and had the $#!* scared out of us when we got chased down by a convenience store owner because his debit machine went down during our $3.50 transaction…! Good times!
As we grew up Ross got a gig with Vans and eventually moved to CA to keep the dream going. He is back in town building his dream home so we got together and went over his current favorite board(that happens to be most people’s favorite board) the CI Rocket Wide! Thru Vans he has worked with Tanner and Dane Gudauskas so he brings a very unique perspective on this design.. enjoy!
surfer- Ross Howatt
Board- CI Rocket Wide, 5’6 x 19 x 2 3/8 27.2 L with Futures tri fin set up shaped by Mike Andrews
Words from Ross:
“I’ve had the pleasure of working with the Gudauskas Brothers over the years at Vans, and through the Positive Vibe Warrior Foundation to help them run the Stoke O Rama series, and the latest Board Drive and film project we did for Trinidad & Tobago, Breaking Boundaries. A few years ago Tanner, Dane, Ryan Riopko (former SS shop manager and Vans Events Coordinator), and I were doing the East Stoke O Rama tour and collecting used boards from shops along the way, and The Boys were riding some of the first prototypes of the Rocket Wide. A design by Dane G himself. We stopped for a surf and a game of Black Jack in Atlantic City, NJ and forced ourselves to paddle out in the tinniest waves imaginable. Those guys were actually getting speed and doing turns on such small waves that it was kind of mind blowing! They started hyping me up on that board, and I’ve been riding it ever since. It works in everything from the mushiest Florida waves to overhead Rocky Point. I destroyed the last one I had at Waco, then Tanner ordered me a custom one after that, and it has been my go to board if the surf is questionable.. which it always is in FL., but these things are magical!”
All photos courtesy of Jimmicane Wilson.