INTRO - The scoop on the 2014 kite rides released so far. Will you find that magic all-round performer that won't hold you back however you choose to ride? Producing that key product seems to still be the aim of the game for the mass market this year. Let's tuck in.
*This guide was produced for issue #65, released in September and before some 2014 gear was released. As well as our other guides, we will be doing another update in January, including more releases coming in the new year. The F-One Bandit is reviewed in issue #67, out in January.*
CLICK ON A BRAND NAME TO JUMP TO INFORMATION
Let's kick off with the biggest change for Airush which is the new Varial X which has been fully redesigned into a three strut SL-C kite and is the highest-performing all-round kite in the Airush range. Combining the low end power and stability of the Wave and premium performance of the Razor Team, it's designed to provide the best combination of freeride, wave riding and wakestyle in a four line set-up. The Varial X is aimed at the all-round rider looking for a more performance oriented product for unhooked manoeuvres, aggressive flying in waves and it also has the biggest boost in the range.
SIZES: 14, 12, 10, 9, 8, 7 and 6m
Back for more freeride, wave, jumping and looping fun is the very popular Lithium. A delta-hybrid design, it turns more pivotally than the Varial X, features a massive range, quick and direct response and is still very easy and predictable to use for riders of all levels and specialities. If you're looking for great low end pull, superb ease-of-use, uncomplicated fun and want to incorporate wave riding and jumping into your repertoire then the Lithium is for you.
Look out for the light wind Lithiums - the One 16m and the Zero (strut) 18m featured last issue. There's no such thing as 'no wind' - these kites will find it!
SIZES: Zero 18, One 16, (three strut) 14, 12, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
The Razor freestyle kite returns and has already taken out the men's PKRA Championship this year in the hands of Alex Pastor. Although a true C kite in design, feel and performance with amazing pop, unhooked ability, supreme speed, manoeuvrability and kite loops, the Razor also has great range and comfort for every day riders.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9, 7 and 5.5m
The Wave was a big hit last year too as a super high-performance, natural wave machine and 2014 sees tweaks to the design with more sizes added to the range as well as adjustments to the wing-tip and canopy layout for a smooth power delivery and fluid steering for a consistent feel. It's a phenomenal machine and performed insanely well in our wave test last year.
SIZES: 12, 9, 7, 6 and 5m
The VXR race kite is also back to challenge for more titles with two new designs added for wind-condition-specific racing - the 18m for extreme light wind and the 8m with a slightly lower aspect for gustier, stronger winds in course and slalom racing.
SIZES: 18, 17, 15, 13, 10 and 8m
Similar to the Aramid Load Frame used in the Razor Team and Wave kites last year, a positive response to that innovation has led to Airush adding a similar concept of structural integrity and performance to the Lithium and Varial X with the all new 'Poly Load Frame'. Durable polyester fibres are strategically placed along the kite for a more solid connection and to prevent stretching through the canopy.
Designer Peter Stiewe has spent hours upon hours with Best's new superstar riding team to improve every model in the kite range.
Best's ultimate freestyle machine, the GP, returns with a new Reflex curved leading edge to increase the canopy lift area for more pop and slack than ever before, helping you stomp double passes sooner. You can also switch between new school (more reactive steering, increased depower and vertical lift) and wake-style (more pop, less reactive steering and maximum slack) settings in seconds with Twin Tune rigging.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9, 7 and 6m
The TS will be the most popular kite in the Best range and is perfectly suited to the majority of riders. An open-C platform gives the solid stability of an SLE with the super sharp handling of a C kite. A huge sweet spot provides impeccable unhooked handling while revisions to the wing-tips and leading edge profile have improved the downwind drift and bar feedback for wave riding. Tweaks to the bridle layout eliminate back stall and have increased the wind range of each size. The five and six metre sizes come with a three strut layout for stability in even the gustiest conditions, while the rest of the range perform with a five strut layout.
SIZES: 17, 15, 12, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
KAHOONA AND KAHOONA+
The Kahoona returns for a sixth generation, lighter at the bar this year and more responsive and a new leading edge profile provides super smooth power delivery, even in gusty conditions. The trusted four strut layout provides easily accessible power in low wind speeds, the Delta shape aids an almost automatic relaunch while the downwind drift and rock solid stability are the essentials for beginners, intermediates, riders looking to push their levels with new moves as well as wave riders. Super safe and easy for all conditions is the message and the Kahoona comes in a standard model and the + model with the full set of top model features.
KAHOONA SIZES: 13.5, 11.5, 9.5, 7.5 and 5.5m
KAHOONA+ SIZES: 13.5, 11.5, 10.5, 9.5, 7.5, 5.5 and 3.5m
The Cabo returns for a second season for true wave die hards as an incredibly dynamic kite with a beautiful mix of stability, weight, balance, lift and drag. Turning ability, speed and bar feel have all also been honed. It's a weapon.
SIZES: 11, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
All kites, apart from the Kahoona Standard come equipped with Best's new Twist Lock Valve allowing three times more airflow than a standard kite valve. Other innovations include the Double Core RS - a light weight responsive canopy material with an incredible resistance to tears and improved bias load handling with two bundles of high tenacity filaments in the warp and weft of the canopy, woven closely together, helping the material stay stronger and hold shape for longer. Double Core RS means Best can offer you a lifetime warranty on every kite.
First up is the Mist - Blade's brand new freestyle machine. Sharp, contoured wing-tips with an exaggerated bend minimise the bridling requirements and make the Mist very reactive to rider input, yet it's still highly stable and forgiving but provides an incredibly direct feeling with the kite. The Mist packs serious grunt, explosive pop and continuous pull throughout tricks, helping you maintain stability as well as find that controlled, smooth landing. Turning around the wing-tip, kite loops are continuous with minimal loss of power and the five strut design maintains continuous power delivery throughout your jumps and stability for fully-loaded tricks.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9 and 7m
Returning for its sixth year the Trigger is still a big air boosting machine that's also capable of very good wave performance and general freeride skill building. A steeper profile this year and deep contours add more immediate power and massive thrust for big airs. The trusted three strut design provides enhanced responsiveness and turning speed for any size kite and the turning axis on the leading edge between the centre strut and wing-tip results in an efficient balance between turning speed and power delivery. There's also an optional wave setting that positions the kite further towards the edge of the window, allowing more depower, better drift characteristics and better upwind performance. Super quick turns, efficient power delivery, stacks of power on tap - it's Blade's ideal choice for energetic and lively riders.
SIZES: 14, 12, 10, 9, 8, 7 and 5m
The Fat Lady 17 metre returns once again as a proven choice for light wind riding - fast, powerful, responsive and a thrill to ride, don't let the name mislead you - she's agile and fast and will blow you away!
Another solid year ahead for Cabrinha judging by their six kite offering for 2014, now with most models being light in weight yet featuring superb build integrity with Skeletal framing technology and Cabrinha's new 2DR double rip-stop material.
Fronting up for freestylers the Chaos is a freestyle/wakestyle dream with direct steering, fast response and power through the turn for massive kite loops. Performing at its best for anything unhooked it works in a wide range of conditions. The freestyle specific bridle is tuned for handle-passes and the Compact Arc Shape with Dynamic Arc provides quick turns and easy relaunch.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9, 8, 7 and 5.5m
The Switchblade is back yet again for the performance oriented freerider/freestyler featuring an upgrade in handling with an all-new bridle, providing even more direct and precise steering. If you're looking for park and ride stability the Moderate Arc Shape with Dynamic Arc give more power and more aerodynamic efficiency meaning you don't have to move the kite too much. Bar pressure is lighter once again and the biggest treat are still the huge boosts and hang-time. Changes in outline and profile have enhanced the low end power as well as increased the handling and control at the top end, making it Cabrinha's easiest high-performance kite.
SIZES: 14, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 and 4m
Looking for a wave assassin? The three strut Drifter maintains incredible drift stability and high depower, allowing you to surf more naturally without the pull of the kite. The Moderate Arc Shape with Dynamic arc provide quick turning and fast relaunch and less pulleys mean you enjoy more direct steering.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9, 8, 7 and 5.5m
For light winds the Contra is described as a 'featherweight cannon'. Ultra-efficient profiles optimise low end power but crucially give you lots of depower at the top end. Utilising light weight materials with very low drag, the Contra is able to deliver sharp, precise turning for impressive power generation but with the agility of a smaller model.
SIZES: 17 and 15m
Still in the light wind game, the Velocity VMG race kite returns to provide the pinnacle of racing efficiency on all points-of-sail. Based on a bow kite plan it has the highest power-to-drag ratio and a flatter, more powerful arc for the most forward speed possible.
SIZES: 18, 16, 14, 13, 11 and 9m
And finally the Vector is the go-to entry level kite in the Cabrinha range and has had a big upgrade in performance. The Overdrive 1X control system gives direct steering by eliminating the need for pulleys. Performing easily in all conditions with any board, expect park and ride stability, light bar pressure, very good relaunch and great build quality. Versatile freeride performance for all.
SIZES: 14, 12, 11, 9, 7, 5 and 3.5m
Two new kites in the CrazyFly range for 2014. First up is the Tango featuring the 'Nifty Bridle System' allowing the rider to easily switch between three riding modes; wave, freeride/freestyle and wakestyle. The wave set-up feels very smooth in the air and won't back stall even when you ride in front of it on the wave. Easy to control with soft power in the turns and a very light feeling there is still power on tap when you need it. In the freeride/freestyle setting the Tango turns very dynamically with perfect amounts of power and moves obediently to where you need it in the window. Powered loops and the upwind abilities are superb. In wakestyle mode the Tango is extremely stable and provides the most power, remaining solid in the sky at 45 when handle-passing until landing. The turns have lots more power, offering powerful boosts for unhooked kite loops. Experienced riders will benefit most from this system, but it can be used comfortably by all riders thanks to a simple four line set-up, super easy relaunch and adaptability.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9 and 7m
The second new kite is the Cruze light wind kite. The five strut configuration offers enough support to remain solid and ensures easy relaunch in light winds and good stability in the stronger gusts. Fast through the air and with good upwind performance it's also a great option for heavier riders. Coming with 24 metre flying lines as standard plus three and six metre line extensions for more performance in ultra light wind conditions.
SIZES: 17 and 15m
A new bridle set-up with four attachment points on the leading edge help the 2014 Sculp hold its shape in gusty conditions and adds a more direct feel for the rider. A new shape and stronger bridle set-up and positioning have also improved the top end performance and stability of CrazyFly's high performance kite that is also suitable for the majority of riders. Upwind performance has also been enhanced as has the amount of power generated and quick response for big airs and kite loops.
SIZES: 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 5 and 3m
Only the best materials are sourced and used with Dacron from Germany, Rip-stop from Japan across the CrazyFly range, representing a great combination of high quality, performance and value.
HADLOW PRO Designed with Aaron Hadlow's unprecedented attention to detail and exacting attitude, the Hadlow Pro IV's focus is to be the purest wakestyle freestyle performance machine on the market. New front line attachment points, a more rigid canopy structure and aerodynamic tweaks provide a noticeably quicker kite that's faster through the sky with an even more solid and direct feel. There's more control and speed through a kite loop and the Hadlow Pro IV sits further forward in the window when unhooked for the perfect pull. If you're looking to hit rails unhindered, nail the most powered, technical moves or to take to the skies, the Hadlow Pro has been produced for you.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9 and 7m
The Shiva is an all new model offering sublime ease-of-use, fantastic turning speed, huge wind range, stability and effortless relaunch. Light bar pressure takes the work out of riding but still gives you loads of feedback through the bar. Freeriders and freestylers will enjoy the healthy lift rate packed into the Shiva while wave riders will love the quick turning and levels depower for control when flying down a wave. The profile hybrid design allows for good downwind drift when you turn towards it while the power is smooth and predictable as you loop and turn it down-the-line.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9, 7, 5.5 and 3.5m
All Flexifoil kites come with the build quality they have built a reputation for and are made to last.
Sometimes things happen to rock your world so hard that you never quite feel the same again. While not quite an earth shattering event like that, Flysurfer releasing an LEI is a massive turn up for the books in kiting.
The Cronix is the result of giving carte blanche to designer Andreas Hanrieder to come up with a new freestyle-freeride kite almost two years ago. Smooth, light, easy to fly and with power on demand, it's capable of performing in all disciplines and conditions. The Adaptive Airfoil System generates huge low end power while the unique trailing edge bridle creates more lift through the curvature of the kite profile when powering up, simultaneously helping relaunch, whether by reverse starting or by pulling a steering line. The effectiveness of the trailing edge bridle can be adjusted within seconds on the kite, just like bar pressure options, so every rider can match the set-up of the kite to their preferences. For fast kite loops, breathtaking freestyle tricks, hard cut backs off-the-lip, a sporty feeling in flight and a massive wind range, the Cronix is a true all-rounder and also comes with Flysurfer's Free Flow Valve for fast pumping and a Self Launcher system. Nice work.
SIZES: 12, 10, 8 and 6m
More Flysurfer release details expected soon.
Exciting new additions and the return of old favourites and classic models is the Naish story for 2014.
The Park continues as the one kite that does it all for any rider, any style, in any condition and this year has a new Static Bridle platform for better forward flying, acceleration out of turns, stability, instant response and direct bar feel; essential characteristics for both wave and unhooked riding. The powerful profile and reduced diameter struts provide outstanding low-end power and consistent pull and the compact C outline and three strut design results in a stable, responsive kite that has just enough sweep in the tips for easy relaunch. The Alana is based on the Park but styled for women riders also looking for a all-round kite.
PARK SIZES: 14, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
ALANA SIZES: 12, 10, 8 and 6m
Of course the Torch is back. Naish's flagship performance kite is for freestyle riders who want the ultimate in performance C kite flying with precision response for hooked-in and unhooked riding. Weight savings have been made with reduced diameter struts, increasing the low end and improving handling. The direct bar feel, solid power through the turns with the tow point out at the tips, great depower thanks to the kite's speed and unhooked control are all still present and correct. SIZES: 14, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
The Draft is a high performance freeride kite that excels at hooked-in riding, hang-time and racing. A state-of-the-art design has a powerful lift for boosting big airs and long, gliding jumps. The Static Bridle platform eliminates the need for pulleys and keeps the kite stable and driving forward for unrivalled upwind performance and downwind speed. There are five struts on the 12, 9 and 7 metre models for windward performance and three struts on the 17 and 14 for light weight performance and faster turning.
SIZES: 17, 14, 12, 9 and 7m
The Ride is for the rider looking for ease and simplicity. The light weight two-strut design provides superior low end performance due to its fuller centre section as well as faster inflation and smaller packing for easy transport. Rounded wing-tips make the Ride relaunch in an instant and the slightly flatter arc gives you that nice sheet-in-and-go feel and easy jumping characteristics.
SIZES: 14, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 and 4m
The Fly, similar to the Ride, is a two strut design for an exceptional light weight build and low end performance with easy handling, turning and control. Stable, great relaunch and a nimble, light weight feel in a big kite are the key aspects.
The Trip goes even further into light weight performance and has no struts to represent the ultimate in simplicity. Ideal for intermediate-to-advanced riders looking for a compact kite for traveling, freeriding, wave riding and snowkiting, packing up 30% smaller than a kite with struts, yet it still packs great performance.
More Naish releases expected soon.
The hottest news from North is the launch of their new Dice freestyle / wave kite, aimed at the rider wanting a do-it-all machine with C shape flying characteristics. 2012 KSP World Wave Champion Airton Cozzolino and freestyle superstar Tom Court are both using the Dice, illustrating its all round capabilities. Based on a C shape profile, using a light weight three strut construction, the kite is lively in your hands, very direct and predictable in the air. Bar feedback is instinctive and the kite it total plug and play right out of the bag. Good, fun kite loops, responsive and fast, the Dice is superb in all conditions.
SIZES: 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 and 4m
The Rebel remains North's best selling kite with a massive throng of fans who will ride nothing else. Suitable for beginners, intermediates and experts, the Rebel offers responsive steering even when depowered and the upwind ability is excellent, making it fantastic for freeride, waves and even a bit of racing. A deeper profile this year allows for better downwind drift and makes it the weapon of choice for NKB surfboard shaper Sky Solbach, who relies on it for its dependable handling characteristics in all conditions so he can concentrate on the board under his feet. Totally controlled in the roughest conditions and if you're looking for loads of control, huge hang-time, lift, and big floaty jumps then this is the machine for you.
SIZES: 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
The Vegas needs no introduction, offering the best wakestyle and freestyle riders the perfect tool. It's the most direct, lively and responsive kite in the NKB range with the best unhooked performance, aggressive lift, massive pop and provides the most extreme height in your jumps. A loaded 5th line high depower C kite, the unique feature is the Vegas' ability to offer a power delay after you've popped where the kite has no power, allowing you to perform tricks without being hassled by too much kite pull. Kite loops are precise and powerful and the Vegas powers through the loop with bags of speed. Many freeriders also choose the Vegas for its lively nature and responsiveness, but most aggressive riders choose it for its uncompromising high performance and dynamic handling.
SIZES: 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
More North releases expected soon.
We can spill news of the first couple of models to have bolted from the stable, starting with the Reo wave kite. Since its first introduction Ozone have had nothing but positive feedback but behind the scenes continuous development has been taking place. All we can reveal is that the new Reo's performance is even closer to a true surfing experience and has enhanced freedom in performance. New sizes offered this year provide a better selection for those critical rider preferences.
SIZES: 12, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 and 5m
The C4 new school freestyle kite is back. The 2014 model is designed without compromise to fulfil the top freestyler's needs, yet maintains an easy-to-ride feel, keeping the rider comfortable in all conditions. Variable Bridle Geometry set-ups allow for 'new school' - with a heavier and direct bar feel, more powerful load and pop for freestyle and wakestyle riders (shipped as standard on this setting). Or switch to 'freeride' mode by simply moving the middle bridle lines to the pigtail knot closest to the leading edge for a lighter bar feel and increased depower, making it a good kite for waves, too.
SIZES: 14, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, and 6m
More Ozone releases expected soon.
The Vision MKIII all terrain kite gets a new body profile to increase the depower and wind range in high winds as well as the upwind performance with the main shape moved forward. The front section of the kite is stiffer and better supported with a new strut design, featuring multiple vertical and horizontal panels while a new bridle with different attachment points reduces the bar pressure and increases profile stability, especially in gusty or extreme winds. Silicone rubber reinforcements on the inflate valve and bridle attachments as well as a new single inflation/deflate valve on the leading edge complete this excellent light weight three strut machine.
SIZES: 15, 13.5, 12, 10.5, 9, 7 and 5m
Refining the big boosting yet very versatile Obsession, now for the sixth time, must always be a tough task. Now slightly more closed than in previous years with more of a C shape curve but has a much high aspect ratio than a C kite to maintain its incredible boosting power. A new strut design with new attachment points on the leading edge have improved foil stability allowing the Obsession to be flattened off in the body towards the trailing edge. They reckon it's now 20% more stable and with a redesigned bridle is now even more powerful yet with more range and softer more progressive depower at the top end. The bigger sizes are now faster and easier to be kite looped and the kite is tough, once again with the graphics worked in as part of the structure of the kite rather the just printed on top. Historically, this has been one of the most fun and powerful all round kitesurfing kites out there.
SIZES: 15, 13.5, 12, 10.5, 9, 7, 6 and 5m
The Passion mark six has only small improvements to what has already evolved into a great freeride kite. The leading edge is now more curved making it more 'delta' in shape and this combined with a shorter overall leading edge length provides the perfect mix of power handling and stability. The leading edge has also increased slightly in thickness to add stiffness, stability and support for the whole canopy. Overall it's faster and more comfortable and schools should look out for the specially simplified version with just two struts, great low end and stability.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9, 7, 5 and 3m
RRD have been building wave kites since before we knew we needed them. The Religion doesn't get upgraded every year, only when improvements can be made and the mark three model is easier to ride and even more fun. Stable, fast, powerful when you need it to be and a moment later completely neutral. A thicker leading edge in the smaller sizes has improved stability in stronger winds while the bigger sizes are now even more powerful and two new sizes have been introduced: a 12 and 10.5m. These bigger models are constructed slightly lighter than the bulletproof smaller models to further aid their light wind performance, responding brilliantly in marginal surf conditions of eight to 16 knots.
SIZES: 12, 10.5, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 and 4m
The Addiction is back for racers, its shaped refined and moved slightly forward for more stability and constant power delivery. New wing-tips create a better pivoting effect when going downwind to prevent stalling and upwind ability has also been further enhanced. Predictable, stable, fast - all you need now are to perfect your tactics.
SIZES: 18, 16, 13, 11, 9 and 7m
Two releases in this their first product batch release. Another release to come early in the new year.
Four years since the mark one and the 2014 Rally is the most versatile kite Slingshot have ever produced, delivering incredible wind range with proven high performance for intermediate to expert riders looking to excel in freeriding and surf conditions. The 2014 model is faster, more manoeuvrable and has a better low end. An updated air frame and Slingshot's patented Splitstrut construction make it incredibly stable and the new Rally features Connect Forward, a breakthrough in attachment point placement that allows the wing-tips to twist open and prevents stalling. You can choose from three attachment points to tune the optimum bar pressure for your riding style. Bigger Reflex wing-tips allow the kite to pivot, balancing faster turning speeds with precise control and stability. As on all Slingshot kites, the 2014 Rally features legendary construction through their state-of-the-art manufacturing process and top-of-the-line materials.
SIZES: 14, 12, 10, 9, 8, 7 and 6m
The icon is back and the Fuel continues to be the C kite choice for hardcore freestyle and progressive wakestyle around the world. Can you believe it's had 14 years of refinement and innovation and of course now is the pinnacle in terms of power, rock-solid stability and incredible mega looping. The 2014 version features Slingshot's new Tri-Tech protection of Kevlar, Mark Cloth and Neoprene - found across all this year's models - as well as a new Splitstrut for increased stability and durability, plus it's had a new aggressive paint job. The Fuel has been allowed to develop as a kite to help pro riders and the sport's future starts stand out. Offering maximum durability with timeless performance it continues to be refined year on year through experience.
SIZES: 13, 11, 9 and 7m
The Taina returns for a third season for freeriders and wave riders looking to progress their riding. Stable, reliable and with a huge low end, the Taina enables you to use as small as kite as possible and provides an exceptional, vertical lift and hang-time for those who like to fly. A new shorter bridle reduces the chance of tangles and provides a new reduced bar pressure. The Taina is faster and more manoeuvrable and depowers quicker with a shorter movement on the bar for better wave riding performance. Nice final touches on this and the Arawak are of course the new look and the new large deflation valves on the end of the kites for easier packing, regardless of weather conditions. We've been very pleasantly surprised by this kite from Starkites in the past and look forward to hopping on it again soon.
SIZES: 17, 14, 12, 10, 9, 7 and 5.5m
The Arawak freestye kite has been revamped with a new outline and bigger aspect-ratio, facilitating increased pop and slack lines - superb for wakestyle freestylers but also keeps the old schooler grinning with a much better hang-time. A thinner leading edge reduces drag, provides better depower for more comfort and more control in windy conditions. One pump, sturdy construction and three connection options on the back lines make the kite convenient, reliable and adaptable, allowing you to choose your preferred bar pressure and kite reactivity.
SIZES: 12, 9 and 7m
Now into the 2.0 range of Rabbit kites the flagship line of products from Wainman Hawaii are characterised by a low-aspect canopy shape, providing amazing power delivery and relaunch, depower capabilities and range. These kites really are something different and we recommend that you get on one at some point. Very tunable in the bridle configuration you can find a playful yet provokingly aggressive nature in some settings. The entire Rabbit range of kites are incredibly stable, fast and direct in their handling and the range now consists of 28 kites, including the 2.0 Black Edition range, the 2.0 White Edition range and 2.0 Limited Edition range, made to mark Wainman's fifth anniversary and come with a matching sleek new 'White Carrot' bar. A Rabbit School Edition has been launched based on the tried and tested Rabbit 2.0 design offering a cost effective way for schools to teach on an exceptional product.
SIZES: Big Mama 14.5, Boss 12, Punch 10.5, Smoke 9, Mr Green 7.5, Gypsy 6.25 and Bunny 5m
The latest news from Wainman is that they are on the verge of launching their new C kite, the Maniac - a modern version of a classic C kite design offering insane performance for freestyle and wakestyle connoisseurs. Look out for that next issue.
We've tested the Krush from Zeeko a few seasons ago when the brand launched and were pretty impressed by the kite's functionality as a first model. The French outfit are pushing on this year with the fourth edition of the Krush but let's look first at their all new model, the Pursuit.
Built for high performance freeriding and huge hang-time the Pursuit is packed with explosive vertical lift, a massive wind range, excellent stability and the best upwind performance in the Zeeko line. Suitable for hooked-in freeriding, waves or racing the Pursuit is designed to provide uncomplicated riding and loads of power for the most fun possible on the water. You'll find three trimming settings on the kite to adjust the feel at the bar, one pump and a new large diameter inflate/deflate valve with air lock and neoprene protection for ease-of-use. The bridle features four strengthened attachment points on the leading edge and an anti-inversion system to connect the lines. The reduced diameter of the leading edge is also reduced at the tip to avoid the bridle catching during launching or relaunching in the water for increased safety, however big your wipeout! PVC reinforcements throughout.
SIZES: 17, 13.5, 11, 9.5 and 7m
The Krush is a freestyle cross-over kite providing powerful pop and slack lines for unhooked moves, especially good for handle-passes, maximum reactivity and impressive stability. The 2014 model has a new 'bat trailing edge' with the cut more tuned for better drag, upwind ability, pop and manoeuvrability. Exits from kite loops are now easier and more controlled for super easy landings while the bridle has been modified for more stability during unhooked moves. In terms of strength a new triangle cut stops the kite ageing quickly. As with the Pursuit there are three trimming options on the bridle and the Krush also has the Easy Relaunching Assistant system, PVC and dacron reinforcements and the new inflate/deflate valve with airlock.
SIZES: 12, 10, 9 and 7m