I apologize for the long absence but I have been unwell and in quite a bit of pain so the thought of writing was not there. Anyway I am now back on the water and this weekend brought good winds and good surprises. The Gaastra/Tabou guys are here for a photo shoot and brought some really nice stuff. They are working on the 2013 sails and boards and the board I most wanted to see but thought I never would, turned up right in front of me - the 2013 Manta 71/113. I rode this board and will give you my impressions and opinions in the next post.
Peter Muntzlinger was working on various sail prototypes and it was interesting to hear his comments. The good things about Peter as a sail designer are as follows:
1. He personally sails the sails he is designing
2. He is a really good sailor
3. He is lightly built so is likely to engineer some softness into his designs. I heard him saying that
he is changing the design of the 2013 Vapor to improve twist and softness. NICE!
All in all a good man to be designing our sails.
My sailing partner Gareth had a ride on the new Tabou Rocket 115l, came off the water and bought it - no hesitation. A fantastic shape. The Rockets just keep getting better and better.
I note that the new Select V Max fins are now on their website. I'm not sure of pricing yet but will let you know comparative pricing as soon as some overseas websites have them posted.
The Severne NCX blitzed all the other sails on a Wind Magazine test. Have a look on the Severne website.
Johnny gave me a ride on his Fanatic Falcon 99 and North Warp 7.0. The Falcon 99, I reviewed in a previous post and all my comments stand - a phenomenal board. The Warp 7.0 brings a turbo-charger to the mix. Fantastic speed and control. I had not ridden a Warp before and I must say they have done a fantastic job with this one. The 7 batten arrangement brings a softness which inspires confidence. A really sorted piece of equipment. To give you an idea of the conditions, most of us were on 6m soft sails and smaller so a 7m race sail was pushing it a bit for me but the race equipment was totally unflustered and the speed was only limited by the water state and my courage. I know that I have been down on race sails lately but a ride like this reminds one about the reason for these machines - nothing else can retain those levels of controlled speed in strong wind. If you want to win the race you need a race sail and racing is not about fun - it is about winning!
Talk to you soon when I will discuss the Manta 71 - interesting!.