Updated Epic Surfski Speed Comparison with Greg Barton


Epic Surfski Speed Comparison with Greg Barton

(Updated with V8 Pro & V12 2G)

                                    By: Chris Laughlin


Paddlers frequently ask how much faster they can expect to be in one surfski versus a different model.  For example: “How much faster will I be if I move from the V10 Sport to the V10?”

Numbers relating to boat speed and time trials are very subjective and vary from paddler to paddler.  Personal fitness, technique, and comfort can all play a role in whether one boat is better than another for a specific individual.

However, all things being equal, it is fun and informative to gauge the different levels of performance that are possible throughout different kayak models.  

New V12

We don’t have Epic’s drag calculations to give precise answers on their surfski speeds.  But we have the next best thing, Greg Barton’s analysis of his own speed expectations for his surfskis.  This is a non-scientific analysis, based solely on Greg’s experience in the boats.

The following times are what Greg Barton, paddling the stated Epic surfski models, would expect to record in a 10K flatwater time-trial.  The second set of times reflect Greg’s best estimate as to what an intermediate level paddler could expect on the same course.

{Note: all surfskis mentioned reflect Epic’s most current designs for each model}



V6: 46:40

V7: 46:10

V8: 45:50

V8 Pro: 45:15

V10 Sport 2G: 44:40

V10 2G: 43:58

V10L 2G: 43:48

V12 2G: 43:35

Legacy ICF: 43:30

V14: 43:20

Intermediate Level Paddler:

V6:  53:50

V7: 53:25

V8:  53:10

V8 Pro: 52:25

V10 Sport 2G:  51:55

V10 2G:  51:40

V10L 2G: 51:40

V12 2G: 51:45

V14: 52:00

Legacy ICF:  52:40 (slower in Legacy due to stability issues)

V8 Pro


Some thoughts from Greg:

It’s important to remember that as your conditioning/technique/speed increase, you’ll see more advantage to using a faster boat.

Even though the hull speed of the Legacy is faster, most people will still be faster in a V10/V12/V14 because the increased stability will allow them to effectively apply power.

The Legacy will also depend on paddler weight.  My weight is 175 lbs.  Paddlers over 200 lbs. (even good ones with strong stability skills) will be faster in a V10/V12/V14 than a Legacy.  The longer length of a ski more easily supports the weight of a heavier paddler.  Those under 150 lbs. and with good stability skills will find more advantage in the Legacy over the skis.

As soon as the conditions pick up, even 6”-12” chop, the skis have a tremendous advantage over a Legacy K1.

At normal touring intensities, around 4 mph, the V6 and V8 are nearly the same speed.

For more info on Epic surfskis visit:  http://www.epickayaks.com/