RRD present their new sails for 2013, with developments to existing sails and the introduction of new ranges these are sure to be the best RRD sails to date.
We are focussing on finding out all about the Move and the Style PRO, but first here is John Skye at NWF giving you a quick overview of the whole range.
Now onto the specifics of the first two sails in the range, again the man in the know is John Skye:
This is the first sail from RRD to be developed purely for the Freemove/Freestyle-wave sailor. It’s powerful, but with a boxy throw about feel, that means it has good get up and go, plus remains manoeuvrable and still retains a very good top end. The sail changes a bit through the sizes too, with the larger sizes being more towards freemove use and the smaller sizes more inclined towards freestyle wave and wave use.
Lots of people were involved in the development, but ultimately it came down to myself, Roberto and a few other team riders that were in South Africa last winter. Cape Town was the base camp for all the testing and it was a perfect mix of different wind strengths and everything from dead flat water at Langebaan, to waves in Cape Town. The ideal testing grounds for a sail like this.
I think this sail has lots of uses. It has good power in the hands so is great for freemove and freestyle wave users. Lots of power to get the slightly bigger boards up and planing quickly. It also stays pretty throw around, thanks to the boxy outline, so its pretty fun in the waves too, especially onshore, more bump and jump orientated conditions. I have used this sail a fair bit in waves and really like it.
The sails come in sizes from 7.2 down to 4.2, so that is quite a big range. The large sizes are more suited to the Firemove (freemove) style of boards and of course the larger Freestyle-waves. The smaller sizes fit better to the Freestyle-waves and even the Wave Cult boards.
The sails change quite a bit through the range. Firstly in construction, the larger sizes are built with light weight in mind, particularly in the high up areas of the sail. The smaller sizes have more X-ply in the top to make them more durable, as they tend to get more abuse. Secondly in feel. The larger sizes are a bit more freemove in feel, good for blasting, gybing and generally having a fun time with. As the sizes get smaller, they get more playful and more like a power wavesail. Better for jumping, maybe a few tricks and even a bit of wave sailing.
Last year we were trying to develop the SUPERSTYLE to do everything, from freestyle to freemove, but it became pretty clear that it was no longer possible. Modern freestyle is now largely about ducking the sail into wind and all the things that make a sail good for freestyle were in a way taking away from it’s use as a freemove sail. With the introduction of the MOVE, we were able to make the STYLE PRO a pure freestyle sail, with absolutely no compromises.
In the past the freestyle sails were normally the same as a power wave sail. They tended to have longer booms and slightly more shape in them to get going quickly. Both these things however made ducking harder, so the new Style Pro had to come up with a completely new concept. Firstly we completely flattened the sail out to make it incredibly controllable. Then to still give it some power for the moves we added lots of power in the luff. What this means is that when the rider sheets the sail in, it fills up at the front and produces huge amounts of forward pulling power to get up and moving quickly. However, when the rider sheets the sail out, it goes dead flat, making all the moves easy again.
Again the sail was developed mainly in South Africa. I did a lot of the work, but also had quite a few team riders try it and even some non team riders too. My freestyle is pretty good still, but to get an idea of how it performed at the very top level I made sure that plenty of different riders gave it a go. Everyone seemed to love it, so we knew we were onto a winner. We also have a new Italian freestyle kid called Jacopo Testa. He is loving the sail and was ripping in Fuerteventura. He is only 15 and I think he will become one of the best freestylers out there.
I wouldn’t recommend the sail only for freestylers, but definitely riders that will be mainly doing freestyle. During testing in Cape Town I even used the sail in the waves and it really surprised me how nice it was. Lots of power when needed, but also lots of control too. I wouldn’t recommend it for waves, but if you are predominantly a freestyle, who occasionally gets to sail waves, this sail still works really well for you.