Gaetan Sene to Use Starboard Paddles in 2013.

Gaétan Séné will not use Select Paddle for 2013. For the full version of this story in French, please visit Get Up Magazine at Below we translated in English…

Gaétan Séné will not use Select Paddle for 2013. Meanwhile he was testing the new range of 2014 race boards in Thailand, and he finalized his 2013 contract with his main sponsor (Starboard) and is now more involved in the whole development of Starboard paddles.

Here are some questions Gaetan answered for us on his expectations…

You arrived in the paddle division at Starboard giving up the very specific low blade angle Select paddle. Which model will you recommend from this brand now and why?

In the Starboard paddle range, there is the High Aspect, which has a race shape. There are 3 different sizes of blades. I will use the small and the middle depending on the need (Flat, beach race, Downwind). The shaft is the Foil Carbon, which is oval shaped.
First of all, I will try to get closer from the shaft size and blade surface that I was using at Select to be more confident at the beginning. I will try later on some other paddles and see if I can adapt them to the race.

How did you feel with the new Starboard prototype that you asked for?

The first feeling I had with the usual paddle was good but the blade angle was very different from Select. So I asked the Starboard workshop to reduce the angle and since those modifications were done, the adaptation went very fast. After a couple hours of paddling, I felt my stability back, with less blade resistance and good feeling that I will keep working on as soon as I receive the other models.

Those technical choices with various blade angle, are they hard to recognized on your water performance?

In fact, the performance related to each different paddle and slope blade are difficult to analyze, there is a big self-adaptation component. However, there are some common features as size and surface, which are close to each rider. Then, depending on the motion there is a proper way to put the blade in the water and the slope of the blade can help us to optimize this way. (Especially for the attack, the vertical position of the shaft during the gestural, exit more or less earlier.

What other advantages did you find on your new paddle prototypes from Starboard?

Lightness is the main advantage. The handle is different too, I like it, and it allows my hand to be more open. After a while, I will see if it’s an advantage or not. It’s as well a habit to get through.

Thanks to Franck Debaecker for the story and pictures.