Matteo Fabbri is a good friend of ours and a competitive surfer from Italy, and he rips. Just last month he was out here in good ol' southern California for a few weeks with his family for the holidays, and needless to say enjoyed our plentiful surf. We thought we'd get a little insight as to Matteo's surfing and surfing in Italy.
Matteo huckin' our 4'10" Tombstone
Traveling through the nasal passage
Take notes buddy
Ruby: Where in Italy are you from and where do you usually surf?
Matteo: I'm from Riccione, a little town on the Adriatic cost about 128 kilometers (about 80 miles) south from Venice. It's a tourist hotspot, summertime brings a lot of tourists from Northern Europe. We've got a local surf club, named Monkey (www.monkeysurf.it). This is pretty much my home spot; you're pretty lucky to get it good with the proper swell and conditions, maybe once a week. Tuscany usually has better conditions, but the best spots around here are Sardinia or the Sicily islands. [approx. 850 km (520 miles) away!]
R: How is the competition surfing scene in Italy/Europe?
M: The surf contests in Italy are mainly organized by one of two surfing associations: either Surfing Italia or Fisurf, they make up the national and regional contest tours and championships. Europe has the ASP Europe and hosts the European championships. Every European country has their own championship series, the best contest scene is in France, it's the first class out there.
R: What awards or contests have you won?
M: I've won a few nationals and a handful of regional contests, I started competing in the Under-16 and have moved up to the Open Division. In the 2007, I finised 3rd in the National Longboard Championship and won Rookie of the Year. In both 2008 and 2009 I finished runner up, and in the 2010 I became the youngest Italian Longboard champ, and the first from the East coast. Unfortunately, this year I missed the last stop of the Italian Longboard tour to come to California, although I left in first place in the rankings. I've also competed in the European Championships in Portugal, Spain, France, and Morocco, although my best finish was 5th in 2006.
R: What board model do you ride?
M: I ride a wide variety of boards, I keep a big quiver, because in Italy we have many different types of waves and the conditions change very fast. I have three regular short boards ranging from 5'7 to 6'0; a 5'4" Infinity Tombstone, I think it's a great and fun board for Italian surf not only because it has a lot of volume, but it's so fast down the line and sets up for a very fast turn; a 6'4 single fin egg; a 9'0" Infinity Competitor; and 9'2" Classic with 50/50 rails, a really nice old-school retro noserider.
R: How does the surf scene in California differ from the surf scene in Europe?
M: The surf scenes are different in many aspects, for instance in California everybody surfs, people in the water are much more friendly and enjoyable, you can talk with everyone in the line up, pro or not. In California it doesn't matter what type of board you're using, but that you're surfing it with style. Surfer's in Europe are more competitive and hungry and wave hogs, they're is not as open and welcoming to the others surfers. The best aspect of California though is the culture. Surfing was born in California, it evolves there, everyone surfs, everyone has their surf stories; surfing in California isn't fashionable or the thing to do, it's just a part of everyone's lives. Everything that is California surfing will eventually make its way over to Europe.
R: Thanks Matteo, it's been rad! Any shout out's?
M: I would to thank my sponsors Billabong, Vonzipper, Sandy from BlakVan [our Italian distributor], my family, and all the "big" Infinity family, thanks for everything and thanks for give me this time for talk with you and express myself. Ciao!
The Boehne's certainly have quite an impressive tandem surf track record. Steve and Barrie have 8 Biarritz-Euro titles, 6 Makaha International Titles, and 2 ASP World Titles. Can your shaper surf? Ours sure can.