Of the new releases from Starboard, the Futura and iSonic are the key shapes if you’re looking to go fast, but which one would suit you more? Boards catches up with the designers to find out more…
Designed by Tiesda You, Remi Vila and Svein Rasmussen.
Key changes to 2012’s version must be the new cutouts that come directly from the 2013 iSonic, promising a cleaner wake turbulence that translates into more top end speed. We have also started to produce our Futuras in Wood X, delivering a lighter construction and a responsive ride thanks to the PVC foam sandwich construction.
The Futura is for a freeracer that lets recreational windsurfers tap into some PWA performance features. However, compared to slalom boards, the Futuras are more comfortable and more accessible. Their footstrap positions are not as far out-board. On the other hand, Starboards slalom boards, the iSonics, will have more power and a higher average speed, with quicker acceleration, that ultimately make them faster than the Futuras. There are several GPS-speedsters who have a Futura in their quiver, and long distance races like Lancelin or Defi Wind will also see their share of Futuras in the starting field.
Designed by Remi Vila, and developed with the help of Cyril Moussilmani, Ben van der Steen, Bjorn Dunkerbeck, Jimmy Diaz, Kevin Pritchard, Steve Allen, Alberto Menegatti, Taty Frans, Sergei Chaika, Somongyvari Balazs, Lucy Odillo Maher, Ex Saisorn, Tiesda You, Sven Akerboom and Svein Rasmussen.
The 2013 iSonic is a nine-board range that incorporates several new design features over last year’s edition, applied over different models in the range. Remi Vila explains this best:
“We have a new full Carbon construction on both deck and bottom that is super light and very responsive, improving early planing, acceleration, control and top end speed. We’ve applied this technology to the iSonic 90, 97, 107, 110, 117, 127 and 137. New Heel Extensions push your back foot out and way from the rail of the board, to increase your foots leverage of the fin and give a better grip over the rail; you will find this feature in the iSonic 110, 117, 127, 137.
Looking at the high-wind iSonics, we’ve given the iSonic 80 a change in its rocker that is straighter allowing for more stable runs, while the iSonic 80, 87, 90, but also the 97 and 107 have been given slightly fatter rails from 90 to 120 to keep a perfect balance in jibes. In 2013, the iSonic 80 and 87 will be available in carbon too, and we’ve given the iSonic 80 and 90 one more footstrap insert hole for the front feet.”
The iSonic is used by all our slalom riders and has proven itself to be a winning design for both PWA Slalom World Champions Björn Dunkerbeck and Sarah-Quita Offringa and many other top ten riders.
Which to chose?
We quite often see riders on our forum or elsewhere who are about to buy a board and can’t decide between a Futura or an iSonic, and before we make a recommendation, we usually try to determine what level of windsurfing they are at, and what kind of sails they intend to use the board with. We ask this because we find that if you’ve hit that glass ceiling in terms of speed, tuning and gybing, riding a Futura will be a very rewarding experience because the board simply allows for more slalom oriented sailing and some serious acceleration and speeds, but always a comfortable stance; any magazine review has singled out these characteristics.
However, if you have a fully cambered slalom rig and you already feel confident riding on the most outboard and uncompromised position on any freeracer board, you are ready to tap into the additional performance threshold that an iSonic offers. Truly competitive slalom performance and the highest top speeds, highest average speeds and the quickest accelerations to ensure your spot on the podium. So if a Futura is a very serious sportscar, the iSonic would be the trackday special in racing mode.
Find out more about the Starboard range at http://www.star-board.com