After four years of solid development, with quite a few changes throughout that time, Tabou have decided to keep this board the same as last year’s model with only a slight alteration in graphics and a different fin for 2010. The Pocket Wave is marketed as easy and super-quick to plane, giving it an all-round appeal. The rockerline is said to promote speed and drive to get you moving faster through the white water and staying upwind with ease. Tabou reckon it’s user-friendly enough to be a first-time waveboard, but will also be the weapon of choice for advanced riders in variable conditions.
Design: At 55cm wide and with a quoted volume of 75L, the Tabou is pretty much the standard dimensions of a modern 75L single-fin waveboard. It has 8mm of tail rocker, which again is standard for this type of board, and a 2cm point of 135.6cm, which gives a fairly short planing flat but not the shortest. It has a fair amount of vee running from tail to nose.
On the water: The Pocket Wave felt slightly larger than some of the other boards on test, which gave it great sail carrying ability. Although we only tested with sails of 5.4m and below, a lightweight rider could probably get away with 5.7m. We found the board planed comparatively early and therefore offered the ability to get jumps in almost immediately, which was of huge benefit when sailing in onshore conditions. The board was comfortable through chop and very relaxing to sail in bump-&-jump and blasting type situations. It tracked upwind well and seemed to have good speed. On a wave, it was one of the easiest boards to ride – especially when underpowered. It would keep plenty of speed down the face and an extremely sure-footed bottom turn paved the way for a satisfyingly snappy top turn.
Fittings: It comes with a 23cm G10 fin, which appears tall with a fat tail, and has nice flex throughout. The straps are comfortable and the pads spongy and thick, cushioning the ride well. The deck is fairly domed, but when riding you don’t notice this as the pads make it feel quite flat.
Overall: An excellent all-round waveboard that really is easy enough for a first-time waverider, yet still rewarding enough for someone more advanced. Feeling slightly bigger than other 75s in this test made it great when underpowered on 5.3m or 4.7m, but some of the smaller guys felt it was a little bit too big when they were well powered on 4.2m. The Pocket Wave would be a great choice for British wavesailing, offering the confidence to go out in gustier conditions and exploit all kinds of onshore conditions.