A highly stable and speedy stand up paddle board for touring and multi-day trips
Offering speed and glide, a surprisingly stable ride, and a ton of gear storage options for multi-day trips, the Bluefin SUP Sprint 14 is one of the most appealing paddle boards for touring on the market right now. It also comes with a highly attractive price tag (that includes a backpack, paddle, leash and repair kit), without compromising on materials and features.
Bluefin SUP Sprint 14: The stats
|Best for:||Speed and distance, SUP camping|
|Dimensions:||4.27m x 77cm x 16cm / 14’ x 30” x 6.3”|
|Weight:||12.5kg / 27.6lbs|
|Rider weight:||160kg / 352lbs|
|Bag size:||100 x 37 x 30cm / 38 x 14.5 x 11.8″|
Features of the Bluefin SUP Sprint 14
Gear storageThere are two sets of bungees stretched between D-rings at the front and rear of the SUP to store gear. This provides a ton of space to hold lots of gear, food and water for multi-day SUP camping trips. Additional D-rings (that also attach a kayak seat to the board) can be used with your own bungees to store / secure extra gear, if needed.
Internally, the board is constructed with a dense drop stitch pattern which makes for a very rigid board when inflated optimally. The outside material is PVC with double layer side rails that have been reinforced with 500 denier PVC. The whole surface has a UV resistant coating.
The non-slip croco-diamond deck pad covers really a large area on top of the board. It offers loads of grip and is also comfortable to kneel on, as well as stand on. The rear of the grip deck features a kickpad to aid with quick and sharp turning.
The board features 5 carry handles: one in the middle of the board for carrying on your own, one at each end for dragging or carrying with another person, and two positioned centrally on either edge of the board for carrying with another person. The handles are all lightly padded and comfortable to hold. Additionally, the centre handle can be used as a paddle stay or holder; the velcro opens up and can be fixed around the paddle handle.
To help with tracking and stability, the board features two small side fins and a larger, removable 8″ centre fin. The fin fits onto the bottom of the board with exceptional ease and speed thanks to the Smart Lock Fin System. There are no fiddly screws or fittings to deal with (or lose!).
The backpack is large, providing 111 litres of storage space. It features a huge external zippered pocket for storing your fin, repair kit and other essentials. There are also lateral compression straps, a mesh side pocket for bottle storage, and internal straps to keep the rolled up SUP in place. Plus, the backpack has a padded back, shoulder straps and waist belt for comfortable and supportive carrying. The backpack easily fits in the whole package as well as a buoyancy aid, water and a few bits of gear for an outing on the water. There are haul handles at the top and side of the backpack.
As well as the SUP, backpack and paddle, the package also comes with a dual action pump with a pressure gauge, a coiled leash, and a repair kit. Additionally, there is a GoPro mount positioned at the front of the board.
Bluefin SUP Sprint 14 review
Bluefin is a UK-based company that is relatively new to the paddle boarding world. But despite its youth, Blue has fast gained a very good reputation for its excellent quality inflatable paddle boards that offer superb value for money.
The Sprint is Bluefin’s longest option amongst a varied selection of paddle boards designed to be paddled by one person. It is designed as a racing and touring board and is ideal for intermediate and advanced paddlers who are looking to go the extra mile.
I’ve no interest in racing. However, I do like paddling long distances over a couple of days. So the combination of the Sprint’s easy glide, ability to generate good levels of speed over long distances and its gear carrying capabilities, make for my perfect ride.
I’ve been very impressed with the overall performance of the board, with stand out features being the tracking and stability.
On still, flat water the Sprint truly earns its name. It glides with ease through the water with an overall quicker paddle speed than all rounder SUPs. Don’t expect to be leagues ahead of other paddlers. But do expect to get more speed out of the board over time. Once you gain momentum and get into a good paddling rhythm, the board really goes. And the beauty of the glide is that you can put fewer long paddle strokes in (exerting less effort) to maintain your speed. It really us a dream to paddle.
As predicted, the Sprint is very good in the wind. Yes, it’s still a battle paddling into a stiff headwind. But it stays on track very well thanks to the narrow nose and good amount of rocker. The curved nose does make it a bit more tricky to turn back into the wind when the board is sideways to the wind.
At 30 inches wide, the Sprint is narrower than most all rounder paddle boards. With this in mind I have been very surprised at how stable the board feels in most scenarios. Even paddling through choppy seas and small swell I feel very at home on the board from a stability point of view.
Despite its monstrous length, the Sprint provides exceptional rigidity. It’s worth putting in the extra elbow grease to inflate it beyond the minimum recommended level of 15 PSI to really get the best out of the board. This is especially crucial in choppy conditions when the extra inflation keeps the board strong when popping over small waves/chop.
If you’re looking for a paddle board that is reactive and zips around quickly then you’ll want to consider the Sprint’s more crafty cousin, the Cruise. The Sprint is designed to go straight and fast. And though its maneuverability is perfectly sufficient in most scenarios, don’t expect to feel like a ninja when it comes to turning! That said, once you get to grips with taking a walk to the back each time you want to turn (yes, the board feels that long!), its turning circle is pretty decent. Heavier paddlers will certainly find this easier, especially with weight on the front. But even without gear on the front I have to really push my weight into my back foot and get right back to the kickpad.
Ease of use
The Sprint takes around 10 minutes to inflate to the recommended 17 PSI. The dual action pump has a gauge on it which shows you just how slow your progress is, initially. Once you whip out the valve to convert from single to double action, work really gets tough, but also more effective. The double action means that air is going in on the upward phase of your pump action, as well as the downward phase.
The size, shape and weight of the Sprint means that it’s not as versatile as other boards out there. I wouldn’t go near the surf on it (though I’m sure some people might?!). And I wouldn’t attempt to carry it on my own down the steps and cliff like I do with the Bluefin Cruise. It’s not designed to be an allrounder board.
However, the extra length and weight capacity means that the board deals very well carrying two people. I have paddled it with my sister, who is similar weight to me, with a full load of camping gear on the board too. It’s certainly a lot less stable when we’re both standing up. But with one person kneeling it feels great and the extra paddle power means it zips along even quicker.
What I love the most about the Bluefin SUP Sprint 14
I love how much stuff (and weight) the board can carry without its performance being affected too much. The bungee storage systems provide a load of space. But also the stability and rigidity of the board means that it can easily be paddled by two people.
What I don’t love so much about the Bluefin SUP Sprint 14
Though only an extra kg or so heavier than the Cruise, I find the board fairly cumbersome to carry on my own when inflated. It’s no problem over short distances and on easy terrain, but the extra size and weight fast becomes challenging on tricky ground.
That said, for its length it’s actually relatively lightweight and seems to be no problem for taller and larger beings to carry.
It’s stable, has excellent gear storage options, can carry a lot of weight and glides through the water with efficiency and speed. The Bluefin SUP Sprint 14 is the ideal board for intermediate paddlers wanting to take their paddle boarding adventures to the next level. The whole package also offers exceptional value for money giving you a premium board without the associated price tag. Plus, all Bluefin boards come with a 5-year warranty.
The weight, size and relative instability make it unsuitable to beginner paddlers who are best opting for an all rounder board like the Cruise.
Planning a SUP camping trip? Read our guide to paddle board touring for beginners.
Disclaimer: Cool of the Wild received this product free in return for an honest review. We only recommend gear that we love from companies we trust and we are under no obligation to give a positive review. All thoughts and opinions are that of the reviewer and we are in no way influenced by the brand or company.