RRD have gone all out for their 2010 range producing one of the most extensive and eyecatching lines to date, offering something for everyone. Abel Lago has helped develop two brand new shapes for the Fatal Wave Classic range that have been tested throughout the whole KPWT wave world tour season. Precise, fast and radical, combining the latest surf development in board designs with state-of-theart composite technology, mixing the 'surf magic' of PU foam and polyester resin with high-density sandwich heel reinforcements.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
The RRD comes with simple windsurfing style straps and relatively thin pads. They are minimal and no frills but give you a good attachment to the board, but don't fully lock you in, allowing some foot movement for different types of turns. The back strap has an asymmetric fitting, so if you ride somewhere that the wind changes around quite a lot, or you ride at different spots, you may have to keep altering it, but if you sail regularly in the sameplace in similar conditions, it feels good, allowing you to get your foot into the most usefulposition at the back of the board. You can set a back strap straight down the middle, but you'll need to find a two-screw system.
The board has sturdy weight to it because it's made with a full sandwich construction, similar to windsurfing boards. It's got loads of reinforcements in the deck and is as strong as a performance surfboard gets really.
The first thing you notice is the tail shape. It has a wide nose that comes out to the wide point of the board just in front of the front foot, before really tapering off into a little swallow tail. This has the biggest outline we had on test this issue and it shows in the way the Fatal Wave gets onto the plane so quickly and then flies upwind. This is a workhorse. When you want a board that can stand up to some abuse, this comes into its own in choppy waves and strong, gusty conditions. It planes through lulls and can also cope with big walls of water because it's easy to ride. It feels like quite a hard ride compared to some, but it is stiff, which is why it gets going so quickly and the railsreally help it turn fast and hard. Best in small to medium waves (up to just overhead) it'll turn well, allowing you to alter your turning radius and lock in. Perhaps think about a smaller size if you're under 85 kilos as it does have a tendency to give when you push it really, really hard. A smaller board will feel responsive rather than restrictive, but the advantage of the 6'0'' is that it allows you to use a smaller kite... which is always a big advantage!
For typical wind blown bump and jump and cross-/cross-onshore wave conditions this is nice and reactive and will really get you going. Turning really fast, holding speed on the wave and keen to hit anything, the 6'0'' is a blinding kite surfboard. Tough enough for the harshest beaches and strongest winds, its abilities will only come into question during big turns in big waves when its stiffness and sharp rail will cause it to give, instead of gradually sliding smoothly round the turn. But on the right sized wave (and let's be honest, how many of us are regularly riding in double-overhead conditions) it will hit anything as hard as you like, throwing spray everywhere.
KW LIKED: Tough character and real world kiting charm. It also gets going in hardly any wind and can hold a lot of power, so the range is impressive.
KW WOULD CHANGE: The slight stiffness in the ride, but that's what gets it going so fast.
SIZES: 6'0'' x 18 1/3'' and 5'8 x 18''
Too many kite surfboards to list here can be found at:
This test is in issue #42