585 Westlake street Encinitas, California, the address to Ding King Surfboard Repair, which has been a fixture in North County since 1976. Just a mile from the 'A' frame peaks of D street, it sits on what has always been the surfboard hill, back in the original building next to Bahne Skateboards.
Brian Szymanski, one of the most respected paddleboard shapers moved his tools out of his mother's backyard and in to 'The Hill' when he was only 18 years old. He has since then worked with the leaders in the industry for more than 20 years. This has led him to refine production techniques that result in quality above the norm. A high performance short board and big wave surfer turned paddleboard shaper and racer, Brian enjoys the challenges of designing paddleboards for all conditions. With two "Catalina Classic" stock division victories and multiple first place finishes racing his own designs, Brian's shapes are proven winners. In the past four years Brian has made an impact on the paddleboard industry by pushing the expectations of the stock class paddleboards in speed, stability, comfort and quality of construction.
The first SUP board was shaped for EJ (Ernst Johnson) who patiently asked Brian for help. SUP caught Brian attention and he developed a passion of his own for this new sport. EJ, Brandi Baksic and Matt Freidman are the key players in the Starboard/Szymanski R&D team. "We are a group of paddlers who's soul goal is to make test and race fast boards, to think outside the norm and push the boundaries of what is acceptable. We race/ we train/ we adventure paddle. We look for new challenges and design boards to conquer them"