Your search is over. Unhooked or hooked-in the Cabo will help you charge every wave. The mid-aspect, tri-strut layout helps reduce weight and allows the Cabo to sit further back in the window with impeccable downwind drift - no matter how hard the wind is blowing. The short, reactive micro bridle works in harmony with the tri-strut layout to maximise turning speed and feedback. An open-C platform provides great stability with minimum bar pressure so you can commit 100% on any wave that you ride into. Because big waves demand respect, the Cabo has been built with Best's new Double Core RS canopy material, canopy framing technology and 3D kevlar airframe construction. The Cabo is built surf tough to survive any wave that you can ride. 100% wave focused the Cabo will always let you find the perfect position on every wave for expressing your unique style. It's so good to ride that it could even be your first choice kite even when there are no waves to ride.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
Best's latest bar is very comfortable in the hands. Softer than most other bars in your hands, it's also strong and well built with big chunky bar ends and there are no sharp corners to hit you in the face when getting washed around by a wave. The replaceable metal insert in the centre of the bar is strong, the chicken-loop self keys nicely when unhooked and is a good size, has a neat and tidy push away quick release that simply slots back together and is generally good. There are also good options for leashing for both unhooked and hooked-in freeriding, the bar and steering feels light in your hands and the system is largely well thought out. Above the bar it's can get a little untidier than some with two pull-pull webbing straps for the trim and with lots of trim pulled on the depower straps dangles down quite a bit. There is a Velcro loop on the end to control this and keep it around the chicken-loop line, but just be aware that occasionally this can pull the stopper down with it if you're not careful. So make the Velcro loop large enough to pass over the stopper, or don't use the loop around the CL line at all. It's all standard stuff above the bar, it works, but we just felt that the trimming system could be brought up to speed with the rest of the bar system. The kite is robust and definitely strong and features a six inch strip of dacron all the way along the trailing edge. The one pump is neat and tidy and there's a strong connection to each strut. The pulley-less bridle is simple and the Cabo looks like it will last.
In the sky the kite looks like it should do the job, with swept back but chunky wing-tips, a nice deep canopy profile and a well profiled central strut that should see the canopy flying forward well. We couldn't have had more gusty or testing conditions for the Cabo and it performed well. There are two setting options on the back line bridle and the kite performed best on the bottom knot (making the back lines as long as possible) and in decent amounts of wind. You can power the kite up a little using the other knot in lighter winds, which is nice, but there is just a slight tendency for it to back-stall when doing so, but you do get more power at the bar. The Cabo likes as much wind thrown at it as possible and we mainly rode it on the bottom knot.
When powered up it's very quick and lively indeed. Nice, light bar pressure and a responsive kite is just what we were hoping for. The Cabo doesn't quite have the bottom end that some of the other wave kites do, but it does just get better and better in more wind. The Cabo's quick and direct steering is excellent for spinning and looping to get into your ideal position on the wave, but also because when the winds are light you need to move the kite around a bit to get going. Advanced riders won't mind this at all because it means you can move the kite around very aggressively on the wave and not have it pull you off the line you're taking on the wave ? it only helps. The Cabo is really pivotal and takes barely any effort to get it to spin. If you like to be moving your kite around when you ride you'll enjoy the Cabo.
It does drift pretty well too, doesn't drop forward or out of the sky and is really well behaved unhooked with a bit of trimming. But it's most at home being darted across the sky or looped and chased down-the-line. It's a kite that likes to be on the move.
This is a pure wave kite and in its natural domain in the waves, the speed of handling, drift, pivotal loops and low power in the turns of the Cabo mean that it's better for advanced riders who know how to access the power from a kite like that, and they then really benefit from those characteristics once up to speed and hacking a wave to bits. For switching the power off for any type of manoeuvre it's great.
Fast handling and its ability to loop really fast on command.
KW WOULD CHANGE:
Some people would like a little more juice at the bar.
SIZES: 11, 9, 7, 6 and 5m
KITE BALANCE POINTS
Build quality ? 8
Full package ? 7
Low end - 6
Top end ? 9
Steering speed - 9
Turning circle ? 3 (pivotal)
Bar pressure ? 5
Drift ? 7.5
Water relaunch ? 8.5
Jumping / hang-time ? N/A
Unhooked ? 8
Easy of use ? 6