How is the performance of MF soft boards? Did Mick Fanning produce a quality soft top? We put the 5’10 Eugenie FCS to the test.
– I enjoyed surfing on MF’s Eugenie 5’10. The MF board can hardly be called a soft top as it rides like a performance surfboard. This makes turning and pumping much easier. The MF softboards are much different from other foam boards. Here’s why –
Mick Fanning is transitioning from CT surfer to businessmen. One of his ventures is MF soft boards, together with Marc Matthews.
MF Soft boards have popped up all over Europe lately. I was eager to test one of his boards and after testing the 5’8 DHD Twin (of which you can read our review here) I got the chance to test the slightly bigger 5’10 Eugenie. Just like the DHD Twin, this MF softboard model is a wide foam board aimed at intermediate and advanced surfers. In contrast to other soft top brands, MF truly focuses on making shortboard-like soft tops.
The MF Eugenie comes with three FCS fin slots. I surfed it with a normal thruster (three fin) setup (and a traction pad). The board comes in aqua blue and white and is available in Australia, Asia, the US and Europe.
On MF Softboards’ website the description of the Eugenie is the following: The Eugenie is a replica of a design that Mick shaped for smaller days around home on the Gold Coast. The design is all about ease of use while incorporating elements that will ensure performance when the waves start to pump!
Mick has described this board as the perfect design for kids learning to surf and the shape is also proven to perform as a small wave summer option for experienced surfers!
The MF Eugenie soft board is currently available in sizes 4’10, 5’6 and 5’10. Some technical specs: the deck is 6oz + 2 x 4oz E-Cloth + 4mm IXPE Soft Skin. The bottom is 6oz E-Cloth + 4mm Slick Skin HDPE. FCSII: 3 Fin Boxes Ships With FCSII SoftFlex Performer Thruster Set ONLY
4’10 16 7/8 2 1/8 19.04L
5’6 19 1/2 2 3/8 27.74L
5’10 20 2 5/8 33.35L
I tested the 5’10 and my hight is 1.70 m and my weight is 70kg. The 4’10 really is a skimboard/bodyboard and for intermediate surfers (and even for fast-learning kids) I recommend checking out the 5’6 or the 5’10.
Is it expensive? I don’t think so… it’s a bit pricier than the Olaian and other entry level boards but given that they are really durable I think the price is really fair! You can check current prices here in the MF international shop.
You can also read our post on the MF 5’8 Twin DHD here
Our experience surfing the MF Eugenie 5’10 soft board
Time to put the MF shortboard foamie to the test. When I tested the MF soft board the waves were small but pretty steep and glassy. It was a bit tricky at first but after a few failed attempts I got the hang of it. The board isn’t the cheapest but I say it’s worth is. Here’s why:
The board has much more grip than other foamies we tested. Sure, I still suggest to wax it properly, but the soft skin of the deck is not slippery at all.
What also stood out: The wide shape feels very logical and compared to other foamies the rails looked sharp and well-designed. The board is very light weight and easy to carry around.
When compared to the smaller MF 5’8, the 5’10 was a magic carpet for tiny waves. Some soft tops will literally allow you to catch any ripple and shred ankle-high waves. This is one of them! And not only is this board great in the take-off, it is one of the few soft tops that allows for proper and sharp turns!
The MF 5’10 is more performance-oriented so naturally it likes steep waves. I loved how it behaves on the take-off: it feels stable yet quick. And once your in the wave it doesn’t feel like a soft top at all! This is because of the glassing under the layer of foam. You see, some foam boards are literally blanks wrapped in a thick layer of foam (read more in our piece on soft top technology). The MF softboards have a layer of glassing between the blank and the foam deck. This makes it much more stiff which is important for making quick turns and this is also what experienced surfers look for.
The 5’10 Eugenie by MF softboards is better suited for me than it’s brother the 5-8 DHD Twin that I tested earlier (and I’m 60kg and an intermediate surfer). The Eugenie is also super fast on the rails and you really need to make turns to shake off some speed. And making turns isn’t a problem with this foamie. The board is really easy to push around. It’s really good to practice backside snaps. The Eugenie allows you to paddle in all sorts of waves and make proper turns like you would on a shortboard. This makes it one of the best foamies I have ridden. It is one of the few soft tops that can seriously compete with a rigid board. If you’re looking for a board to take as your only board on surf trips the MF 5’10 Eugenie is worth it.
More about MF Softboards
The quickest surfer on the planet has his own foamie brand now. In 2016 he and his business partner, Mark Mathews, founded Mick Fanning Soft Boards. The brand released a few different models that come in a range of sizes. Besides a basic surf school soft top, MF released the models Beastie, Little Marley and Eugenie. Yes, fun names.. but what do they offer? The Beastie is a super voluminous board that promises to be an alternative to a longboard. In our opinion, besides the DHD Twin, the Little Marley is the pretty pony of the bunch. This ultra wide board has a five fin setup and promises no drag. At FoamieCrew we’ve tested the Eugenie and the DHD Twin so far.
One of the reasons why Mick started this product venture was, in his words, to make the crowded spots safer. That one of his home breaks, the righthand pointbreak of Snapper Rocks can be crowded is an understatement. Snapper is notorious for board to board an board to human collisions. In an interview about Mick Fanning Soft Boards the founding father said that he could only imagine how much safer Snapper would be if more surfers would ride foamies.
Negative experiences surfing the MF Eugenie 5’10
When you’re going really fast the board can become a bit wobbly. If I want to ride shorebreak barrels I would not choose this soft top. The MF Eugenie just wants you to make turns! And in bigger waves this could become problematic. I would advise to consider the MF DHD Black Diamond. With a round/pintail the Black Diamond board looks and surfs the most like a shortboard (but then waaay more fun!). I haven’t published a review on the DHD Black Diamond, but you can see specs and prices here on MF’s website.