Earlier today, World Tour regular footer Conner Coffin announced via Instagram that he was leaving his board sponsor for 16 years, Channel Islands.
This ends a long relationship, which saw Conner pick up his first CI at the age of 10, before he worked his way towards achieving the "childhood dream" of having founder Al Merrick shape his boards for around two years.
"His ability to transform feedback into board design to help me grow as a surfer was amazing," conner says.
"I clearly remember a few boards that took my surfing to new levels within a few sessions."
Al's son Britt, who is continuing the legacy of cutting edge board design at CI took wished Conner all the best. "Thank you for the kind words, we really appreciate it," he said via the CI instagram account.
"It's been an absolute pleasure working with you and supporting your goals since gromhood! What a great ride it's been. We wish you all the best on your next chapter!"
Conner is known for his gouging and authoritative rail work, and his style has often been compared to that of the last Californian World Champ Tom Curren -- another surfer who spent quite a bit of time on CI boards (a la the famous Black Beauty model).
As for Coffin, his time at CI helped formulate the Fred Rubble and Fred Stubble models, which proved incredibly popular.
Coffin has been on tour for four years, with his highest event finish coming in 3rd during the 2018 Quiksilver Pro France, and a top end-of-season ranking of 7th in the same year.