Up top the Slayer looks quite attracive, but there's nothing crazy about it. Turn it over though and it looks like two halves of different boards have been blended together - it's mind boggling!
There is a significant trend towards people using their surfboards on flat water. And why not? It's the ideal place to learn to tack and gybe, to get comfortable on them and to have slightly better light wind ability than your twin-tip. The learning progression on a surfboard is fantastic – and easier on the body, and as such we see many riders focusing on learning to do strapless airs or surface spin tricks.
The Slayer has been developed to increase the fun aspect for riders who don't get to ride in waves or strong winds very often, but do want to improve their directional riding ability. Airush found that the breakthrough came with the step bottom, which creates incredible stability, enabling intermediate riders to ride strapless with ease, even at 60 centimetres wide. The duel step bottom found on the Slayer is positioned just behind the front foot creating a double planing surface. The board therefore remains neutral between the back and front foot adding more stability at speed. The Strakes (as the channels in the front half of the underside of the boards are called) channel water through multiple V steps which improve drive when turning. They also break water flow limiting the bounce under the nose when carving hard. These two attributes increase the comfort and control of the Slayer giving more mobility and movement for this size of board.
Amalgamating a few riding styles into one board, the Slayer performs really well in light winds, similar to those of a skimboard, but also brings a directional surf style element into the game. Choose from a traditional tri-fin set-up, or you can throw four or even five fins in the tail. You'll
have fun finding your preference.
The Slayer has been designed with strapless riders in mind, but of course we don't all ride strapless yet, nor do some of us want to, and the Slayer has foot strap options too – allowing you to go for a traditional three strap directional set-up or two inline straps more like your twin-tip.
We had the bigger model of the two, the Slayer 60, which proved to be a very userfriendly platform for mainstream riders looking to get into directional riding. The width not only helps the Slayer get up and going but it's also a doddle to gybe,making for a wonderful way to learn to ride a surfboard in tame conditions. Yet it also has enough performance and features to allow you to learn a pure unstrapped surfstyle. It's never going to be good in challenging surf – it's a light wind toy, but we like its ability and energy, it's fast has good grip and in small knee to waist high waves it's wicked fun for throwing buckets. What it lacks in straightness, nose rocker and pure wave riding function, it makes up for with speed and grip when you'd otherwise be bogging hard. It's equally comfortable standing over the board for shuvits and pop tricks as it is for powering up the fins and engaging a rail, and there is much less force through your ankles than you get from the big fins on the Sector. This is much more fluid, dynamic and very user-friendly. The tail is angled at 45 degrees to prevent it from catching while riding backwards and you're really encouraged to try things because it feels so easy and stable. Loads of fun on and off the wind and more intermediate riders will find learning to carve and gybe easier on this than the Sector.
Compare it to the Sector 60 V4:
The V4 is a light wind freeride machine - it goes upwind super fast and more often than not you'll be the only person on the water, but the Slayer
allows you to express yourself more. You can still go out in very light winds – we got going on a 12 in sub ten knots – and it's easier to ride than the Sector. It's fast, lively and feels more playful. All that translates into a really fun board, which we actually couldn't get back from certain freestyle riders who predominantly ride in bindings but were loving the ease-ofuse and playfulness while no one else was on the water!
Let's not pretend it's a proper wave board though – it's a very tasty little cake with lots of nice ingredients. And we want one.
SIZES: 165 x 60 and 154 x 54cm