Airush Apex 2016 Review Kiteworld Magazine 2016 Issue 80

Airush Apex 138 2016

Airush Apex 2016 Review Kiteworld Magazine 2016 Issue 80

TEST TEAM NOTES

We tested the Apex Core (A ‘Team’ edition is available with more exotic construction, but many of the same features.). Overall the board is nice and light, yet super sturdy in feel, thanks to Airush’s limited use of unnecessary materials, and the light balsa wood core.

The Apex looks the part for freestyle with its aggressive, square outline. At first glance you may expect super stiff knee-breaking high-performance for pros only, however, although there are more aggressive tips featured this year, the Apex actually feels very accessible as soon as you get on it. The rocker is fairly generous, offering good control in chop and on landings, but isn’t so heavy to make the board sluggish. Entirely the opposite is true – it’s spritely while the medium flex pattern also adds comfort. It’s a great mix which includes a stiffer heel edge for more pop, and no doubt helps the board upwind, too.

 

 

The Venturi concave channels water through the centre of the board and away from the fins, adding speed. As is the case with any board with wide, high-performance tips, you will have to adjust your stance a little to avoid spray in heavy chop, but having said that this is way more comfortable in those conditions than its shape would have you believe, but then added into that fact you also get so much freestyle performance, too.

 

Airush Apex 2016 Review Kiteworld Magazine 2016 Issue 80

 

The fins do feel quite small, adding a skatey quality to the ride, so for those who like to switch between heel and toe-side a lot, perhaps for freestyle or in and around waves, or indeed for when getting to grips with switching to toe-side, there’s much less tendency to trip. That skateyness also means you’ll take an extra moment to lock the board back in on landings. However, being wide and with that concave, the Apex provides a very reliable base to stomp your tricks on. It just feels a little looser on landings than some of the other boards for novices, but at the same time offers more forgiveness on hard landings. Novice riders may want a little more grip in carving turns, but with skills and correctly weighting your feet, good riders will find plenty of rail grip and bite to make the most of that pop. (Adding bigger fins would help more novice riders.)

The AFT straps mix comfort and security with practicality. The two adjustment buckles offer loads of range for a large range of foot sizes, but to get the strap in the clip it’s a bit easier to use two hands before you have your kite up. Comfortable and tight, there’s also a well placed toe bar for extra grip on the pad. This system is in the top three stock set-ups you’ll find anywhere in our minds. Several stance options combine with three width settings on the board itself, and the Apex is robust enough for boots.

 

 

SUMMARY

We are really impressed with the balance in the Apex, providing general ride comfort with high levels of freestyle pop performance in less than perfect conditions. If you’re wanting a board that will help you progress your freestyle but maintains a good level of forgiveness and playfulness, the Apex is a good choice.

KW LIKED

Forgiving rocker line and handling mixed with more aggressive performance from the freestyle outline, which aids your riding in average conditions.

KW WOULD CHANGE

Freeriders may want more natural grip from bigger fins.

APEX BALANCE POINTS

Build quality: 8

Fixtures and fittings: 9


Speed: 8

Pop: 9

Drive: 7

Flex: 6


Comfort: 8


Looseness: 6


Grip: 7

Upwind: 8


Slider proof: NA


Boots applicable: NA

Freeriding: 7

Freestyle: 9

Ease-of-use: 7

SIZES – 140 x 43 / 138 x 42 / 135 x 41 & 132 x 40cm

More information at www.airush.com

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