TEST TEAM NOTES
The Echo is an absolutely superb looking board. Billed as LF’s defining wakestyle board, they’ve managed to make it unusually light for a board in this category and designed it with a wood finish, super thin tips and incredible details in the curves and features. Created through collaboration with team rider Brandon Scheid and legendary wakeboard and kiteboard shaper, Jimmy Redmon, this is the most advanced shape and design in the line-up of Liquid Force’s profiled wood core boards.
The fun factor that this board has is the first stand out element – the Echo just loves to be thrown around. Although it’s stiff (which is necessary in a full-on wakestyle board) the Echo is beautifully set up for bindings with a lovely flex throughout. The rockerline manages to work really well in the more challenging water states that we experience as kiteboarders, but also provides all the performance necessary for riding at the cable or in the park. The base is grind tough and the channels allow the use of smaller fins, or no fins at all, yet the special quality that the Echo offers is that the channels don’t over-stiffen the board as can so often be the case. It’s not at the cable that this is such an issue as the water surface quality is always so much better, but with a kite the feel throughout is very good compared to some wakestyle boards that through being designed to ride finless can feel pretty dead underfoot. You still shouldn’t expect this to be a rocket ship as there is still more rocker, channelling and a different flex to a more comfortable high-performance freeride board. This is still an out-and-out wakestyle board, but Liquid Force have managed to create a lovely flex profile that has an overall feeling of being fun and relatively full of life.
Nose blunts and presses are much easier to control on this really fun board on which good riders will enjoy throwing around for wakestyle and freestyle in whatever the conditions serve up on the day. Take this to the cable and you’ll be happy all day long without sacrificing anything in performance and then you can session it with your kite on the same day and get exactly the same feeling, which is what we’re all looking for to help develop consistent cross-over skills much more quickly without constantly switching between one board and another. What a great option as a one-board solution for your cable/kiting summer.
ECHO BALANCE POINTS
Build quality: 8
Fixtures and fittings: 8
Slider proof: Yes
Boots applicable: Yes
Freestyle: 8.5 – 9
Ease-of-use: 8.5 (advanced riders)
144 x 43, 141 x 42.5, 137 x 42 and 133 x 41cm
More info at: www.liquidforcekites.com
Here’s wakestyle master Brandon Scheid’s Echo video, shot by Vincent Bergeron