WELCOME AND TESTING PARAMETERS

Rider: Bully in Cape Town

WELCOME AND TESTING PARAMETERS

Rider: Bully in Cape Town

100% TESTS!

Welcome to our pure test issue that will be constantly updated with our latest product reviews as and when they’re complete. This issue is your reference point to over 70 products that are new, or have recently been superseded. Keep coming back for our latest reviews and sign up to our newsletter to never miss an update! If you’re looking for more info on how brand new gear handles, or want to check out possible nearly new product options for your ability, you’ve come to the right place! We test equipment all year and in a range of conditions, mostly in the UK and in Cape Town. We want to see how equipment performs in challenging conditions when there’s chop, waves, strong and sometimes gusty winds - and both Cape Town and the UK can offer that up in spades! Of course we’re also interested in the lulls and light wind mornings, to fully get to grips with the equipment’s low end performance, too.

TEST TEAM Our testers don’t set out to find the best products for pro riders, but instead focus on what’s important for every day riders. In Cape Town we ride gear in as many different conditions as possible for six weeks to really squeeze the feel out of a product. We don’t just sit around weighing material. Senior tester Chris Bull is 50, has been kiting for 22 years and tested more gear than anyone we know, outside of gear developers themselves. He runs CBK-Hayling Island, a lively school, club and shop and understands what riders really need from their purchases. Jim Gaunt is 41, editor of Kiteworld, has been kiting for 17 years and rarely rides the same gear for more than a couple of sessions, so has a detailed understanding of current directions / trends.

Rob Claisse joins us for hydrofoil related testing – founder of Progression Sports, he makes kitesurfing instructional videos, runs training camps and has helped the BKSA develop their hydrofoil training syllabus. Before recently going on to become Patagonia’s Sports Marketing Coordinator for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Matt Pearce was a long-standing member of our test team. At 95 kilos he brought weight and a lot of wave riding experience to the team, though he had several years experience as a freestyle riding representative for Liquid Force before that.

HERE'S A GUIDE TO WHAT THE SCORES MEAN FOR EACH KITE AND BOARD:

KITE BALANCE POINT SCORES / 10: BUILD QUALITY: 1 = Sew it yourself / 10 = Indestructible FULL PACKAGE: 1 = Pigtails sold separately / 10 = Comes with its own wind LOW END: 1 = More power in a handkerchief / 10 = Like a raging bull TOP END: 1 = Force 3 feels like gale force 8 / 10 = Feels manageable in a hurricane. STEERING SPEED: 1 = Barely turns / 10 = Blink and you'll miss it TURNING CIRCLE: 1 = Most pivotal / 10 = Likes to scrape the water POWER THROUGH TURN: 1 = You won't notice it turning / 10 = Could move a house BAR PRESSURE: 1 = Light as a feather / 10 = Get down the gym WATER RELAUNCH: 1 = Superglues itself to the water / 10 = Cat on a tin roof DRIFT: 1 = Always at the edge of the window / 10 = Goes directly with the wind. BOOST: 1 = More lift in a wet towel / 10 = Heading for space HANG-TIME: 1 = Short haul flight / 10 Long haul flight UNHOOKED: 1 = Collapses or pulls your arms out of their socket / 10 = Who needs a chicken-loop? EASE-OF-USE: 1 = Makes you book more lessons / 10 = Makes you look good

BOARD BALANCE POINT SCORES / 10 BUILD QUALITY: 1 = Warrantied for the weekend / 10 = Hand it down through generations FIXTURES AND FITTINGS: 1 = Some chance of assembly / 10 = Accessories from the Gods SPEED: 1 = Whales will overtake you / 10 = Induces wrinkles in your cheeks POP: 1 = Like a lead balloon / 10 = How's the view? DRIVE: 1 = Constrained in chains / 10 = Fuel a space mission with the energy FLEX: 1 = More movement in a concrete slab / 10 = Bends like paper COMFORT: 1 = Like riding over rocks / 10 = Like cruising on fluffy clouds LOOSENESS: 1 = Lacks direction / 10 = Like its on rail tracks GRIP: 1 = More traction in a tea tray / 10 = Like a Formula One car UPWIND: 1 = "We're all about the downwinders anyway" / 10 = America's Cup challenger SLIDER PROOF: Yes / No FREERIDING: 1 = Makes flat water feel like moguls / 10 = Ride fresh powder every day FREESTYLE: 1 = Stuck to the water / 10 = Responds best to rough treatment EASE-OF-USE: 1 = Build your own / 10 = Features auto trick learning button *DT = Didn't test, so not prepared to score

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BIRD MACHINE 3’10” Kite Surf | Tow Surf FUTURA 76

HUNTING FOR THE PERFECT FREE RIDING HYDROFOIL COMBO? WELL, LOOK NO FURTHER. THE BIRD MACHINE’S PERFECT SIZE WITH THE FUTURA 76 LOW ASPECT FOIL KIT WILL KEEP YOU FLYING HIGH!

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For all the spec’s visit rideengine.com

Rider: Julien Fillion Photographer: Debbie Jean Hollomon

HUNTING FOR THE PERFECT FREE RIDING HYDROFOIL COMBO? WELL, LOOK NO FURTHER. THE BIRD MACHINE’S PERFECT SIZE WITH THE FUTURA 76 LOW ASPECT FOIL KIT WILL KEEP YOU FLYING HIGH!

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BIRD MACHINE 3’10” Kite Surf | Tow Surf

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FUTURA 76

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For all the spec’s visit rideengine.com

Rider: Julien Fillion Photographer: Debbie Jean Hollomon

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