The Prodigy is Ocean Rodeo's all-terrain model; their simplest, easiest kite, perfect for riders looking for one set-up for all riding styles and pursuits. The Prodigy's three strut design is ultra stable and can handle a massive wind range, making it an ideal choice for new kiters or those looking for something capable of handling all riding conditions. Superb power delivery and a generous, forgiving feel, the Prodigy also delivers smooth turns as well as effortless big airs and hang time. Short length bridles reduce the chance of bridle tangles while delivering steering input, even when the kite is highly de-powered, making tricky landing / launching conditions more manageable. As on all Ocean Rodeo kites, the Prodigy features the Direct De-power bridle configuration, designed to fully roll the kite over in the event of an ejection or when totally depower, providing the maximum loss of power.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
Ocean Rodeo have built their brand around making solid, reliable products that work in a range of conditions and won't let you down. All their fixtures and fittings are of high quality, but there are no flashy extras. The bag is an easy size to pack the kite away in, but it wouldn't act as a back pack for a year's travelling. You get all the basics done well with Ocean Rodeo.
The trimming system is a below-the-bar set-up and unfortunately the trimming rope did have a few sticky moments in the cleat for us. It is of course always important to maintain and clean your equipment, and that's even more important with below-the-bar systems as you have much less purchase and angle to operate the cleat. The Ocean Rodeo depower line is quite thin, and so it does bed itself well into the cleat, but unless you're unhooking loads, you don't need to trim the kite very much as there's so much depower at the bar anyway. The chicken-loop itself is a good, big size, which we like, and as such the chicken-finger needs to be long. It rotates out of the way if you're unhooking, but does point up at you as it's quite long. As the trimming is under the bar you rely on the stopper above the bar to set the throw, otherwise it's enourmous and the bar goes out of reach. There's a huge amount of depower in the kite, just remember to keep adjusting your stopper if yu end up letting go of the bar a few times.
On to the kite's performance and the Prodigy is the kind of kite you could put anyone out on, from a wave ripper to your gran. It's very easy-to-use to use, good fun and has a very smooth, progressive power band that never catches you out. There's a nice feel at the bar of holding just enough power and then when you do depower the kite you can feel that it keeps on tracking with you; there's plenty of positive feeling there.
Some may find the steering a touch on the heavier side, but we like a bit of torque through the bar. As well as having excellent beginner / freeride qualities as it behaves very well, has lots of depower as well as plenty of power on tap at the bar, this would also suit wave riders as it's incredibly stable, the air frame is really solid and continues to drive forward. If you've want a kite that you don't want to think too much about and with lots of power and depower on tap at the bar, you could go and smash the nuts out of all sorts of conditions on this.
There's a moderate boost under the hood which is easy to access, but this kite is really set-up for ease-of-use and predictability, so it's not made to take you to the moon... but it will help you hone your jumping skills. Relaunch is good and it's not bad for learning to get to grips with unhooked raleys or rolls, but it does need some trimming first.
Although small, the Prodigy seven metre never runs away with you as it's so steady; great characteristics for anyone looking for something strong, reliable and very easy-to-use. Athletic wave riders who like to shred with a really fast kite might want something else, but if you find you're regularly challenging yourself in lumpy conditions, then you want something that will continue to sit above your head or alongside you no matter what, then this is a good ally.
Cruisy, easy and fun.
We prefer above-the-bar systems for their functionality and athletic riders will want something quicker.
SIZES: 14, 12, 9.5, 7, 5 and 3m
KITE BALANCE POINTS:
Build quality ? 7
Full package ? 6
Low end ? 7.5
Top end ? 7.5
Steering speed ? 7
Turning circle ? 5
Bar pressure ? 6.5
Water relaunch ? 7
Boost ? 6.5
Hang-time ? 7
Unhooked - 5
Easy of use ? 8