SHOP NAME: Sandy Point Progressive Sports
YOUR JOB TITLE: You Name It
LOCATED: Daytona Beach, FL
BRANDS: Takoon, Progressive, Cabrinha, Slingshot, Liquid Force, Airush, Dakine
How did you get into kiteboarding?
I picked up my first kite back in 1999. It was an F-One 7 meter foil. I put together a three-wheel cart and started land sailing for a couple years. I had some fun with that until about 2001 when I decided to get on the water. I started working at Sandy Point and gear became a little more accessible/safe and progress was much better. About two years later I took my kite instructor certification course with Neil Hutchison and Paul Menta and started teaching. Haven’t looked back since.
What are your responsibilities at Sandy Point?
Kiteboard instructor, designer for Progressive Boards, IT Manager.
Spring and fall are our best times of year. We will have three-to-four days a week of some sort of wind that time of year. It can range from light winds and big kites or foil boards, to blasting out of the north/northeast using a 7 meter with small boards and huge waves. Summertime you need a big kite or a foil board and you need to pray for wind. Sea breezes happen but are not consistent. Mid-winter is good but not as consistent as spring and fall. Most everyone we work with does some sort of wind sport so sessions happen whenever the wind blows. We can usually rotate working hours so we all get on the water.
Best local flatwater location?
Titusville, Florida is a great kiteboarding flatwater spot about 45 minutes south of us, with wide open shallow water. It can handle most wind directions but for slick conditions go when the wind has some south in it and launch on the north side. Boat traffic is almost non-existent in the sailing area. There is a good mix of kiters and windsurfers in the same area and we all enjoy our time together on the water. Wear some water shoes as there are a good amount of horseshoe crabs and other small rocks and shells. There are a few small islands off the north side that are fun to kite around and can provide more slick riding on different wind conditions.
Best local wave location?
Ponce Inlet/New Smyrna on both sides has some of the best kitesurfing conditions in the state. The conditions vary widely depending on time of year. A couple great situations are when the swell wraps into the inlet and breaks on the south shore inside the inlet. The wave is typically only about three-to-four feet down the line but it breaks for a 100 yards or more. On the outside of the inlet on the south side is Shark Shallows. This area can hold some very large swell. Ponce Inlet on the north side beach with a straight south wind will give you just a touch of side-off winds, combined with any swell makes for a very fun and clean wave session. Be careful though, that condition is usually followed up by offshore winds very soon, especially in the fall to winter time. Respect the local surfers and stay away from the highly crowded areas. People in the water can be tough to spot over the waves.
Your best selling kite?
Takoon Furia 12 meter; a solid freestyle kite with an impressively wide wind range and smooth feel.
Best selling twin-tip board?
Progressive Phish 141 3D Carbon, a lightweight freeride board with a smooth feel on the water and a great price at $499.
Accessory people should check out in your shop?
New Epic Gear harnesses are a great value in our line of accessories. These harnesses have a custom feel and strong build. Not to be overlooked, they are a great deal.
Any big changes for the shop this year?
Our Miami store is on its second year and jamming. We’re working hard to bring the right products and services into that area. Our store manager in Miami, ‘Big Jim’, is a wealth of knowledge on all the things we do. We are also launching a new website this year, it will be packed with more modern features to improve the customers’ shopping and browsing experience, along with more informational pages.