The Nomad continues its foray into the freestyle wave arena with a takeno-prisoners attitude. The Nomad is not for your average beginner. But if throwing kite loops or towing yourself into the surf with a kite sounds like your thing, then the Nomad is the kite for you. New and improved material and construction are the foundation of a totally new design which enhances its quick turning and high-depower characteristics. Emphasis on low-end power has been a top priority for 2011 and it is here that Cabrinha claim to have made substantial gains.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
What a great looking product from the moment you get your hands on it. Everything from the bag, through the quality of the canopy with its sublimated graphics, the excellent Sprint inflation system, down to the clean, efficient and good looking bar design and good-sized chicken-loop. It's really all happening for Cabrinha at the moment. The Nomad oozes quality and as soon as you put it up in the sky, you know it's got a good pedigree and comes from a good gene pool. Two other words stand out in our minds when describing this kite, apart from quality: stability and smoothness. The Nomad has an excellent lowend but it's the way it delivers the power that is so pleasing. More like a Vtwin motorbike engine than a revy and racey two-stroke. Its power delivery is subtle, but also ballsy. There's nothing too aggressive about the way it revs itself up, but there's plenty of power there, it's just not delivered in a really abrupt way.
It's smooth and torquey; something that we've found running as a common theme throughout all of Cabrinha's range this year. Everything just feels very measured about the Nomad – the way it flies through the sky and the way it depowers. It's a bit like Barry White; there's lots of feeling and the whole experience is very calm and stable. A real pleasure to fly, nothing is a struggle and it's just very easy and predictable smooth, cool and chocolatey. The speed through the window is actually quite moderate; think of it less like a crazy bumble bee and more like a bird of prey that knows exactly where it wants to be and uses a superior flight pattern to get there. Nothing phases it. For riders looking to try new school stuff, waves and some jumping, it's like your riding ABC and makes life easy. It's also extremely well-built and you know that this kite will last and stand up to the rigours of heavy kitesurfing use. Having said that, and being willing to state that we think this kite would be good for 95% of people out there, if you are used to those super-quick, extremely nimble and aggressive kites, then you might find this a bit on the lazy side.
On some kites you only need to initiate the turn on the bar and the kite will be off. Starting the turn on this requires a little more input, giving you a second or two's buffer, but that's wonderful for freestyle and wake-style riding. When you want it to go, it'll go. It will pull you hard too, but it allows for that slight error in input when you're in the middle of a trick for example. It's also got quite moderate power at the top of the window. This isn't a go out and jump to the moon kite. It does have a lot of floaty hang-time though and is easy to control and handle above your head, but it's better for waves, freeriding and freestyle than being employed as a boosting machine. Kites that have loads of lift at the top of the window, that really rip you up, aren't much fun to ride in waves or for freestyle. Instead, you want moderate, smooth power and a predictable feel at the bar, which you have all wrapped up in a splendid package in the Nomad.
A great kite for so many reasons, this kite will definitely help your riding as it's so easy-to-use and very predictable.
Great build quality and easy-to-use but also high-performance package.
KW WOULD CHANGE:
A small percentage of riders might find this not quick enough.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9, 7, 5.5 and 4m
This test is in issue #51