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Poweride First Impressions

By August 1, 2016 One Comment
Poweride First Impressions

Lightweight is the first sensation as soon as you pull the sail out of the bag. Only 4kg for a 6,6 thanks to the membrane film but also to the tubed batten set: impressive! At first rigging, you can feel that membrane is softer and seems less fragile than classic film or xply. You don’t fear to make any wrinkle or mark when throwing the mast into the sleeve as the membrane bends and softly adapts just like it was Dacron.

  • Rider: Eric Doux (FRA)
  • Weight: 88kg
  • Board: RRD Firestorm 102
  • Wind: 14 to 27 knots
  • Spot: la Nautique (France)

The downhaul pulley is also special as the rollers are in nylon. Weight saving is certainly minor, but it really feels like they roll better under tension and you can be sure the pulley won’t stick with time and salt.

Once the boom fitted, I raise the rig to check the leech opening and realize that four guys are starring at my sail. Sounds I’m not the only one to think the blue membrane and the yellow/green logo really shine bright and beautiful. You certainly won’t go unnoticed on your spot with this sail!

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The Poweride 2016 seems a bit deeper than in my souvenir from the Planchemag test two years ago but she keeps the thin entry and centred profile I like. The leech curve is more round with longer battens on the low body, which should improve the acceleration and relaunch at gybe exit. I also appreciate the new big dual window that gives a much better view of what’s leeward.. landscape or other riders !

I jump on my board and immediately find back the feeling I enjoyed so much. A very unique mix of softness, and reactivity. When shloging the sail feels light, soft and silent as a dacron rig. Then you sheet in and you really feel the whole surface getting under tension. All the path strings are loading to their maximum length and once the shape in place it’s like having a wing in the hands: a strange feeling of aero efficiency, like if you could feel the airflow rising around the profile.

It’s firm, direct and stable but not stiff or shaking. The Poweride reacts with small but super quick movements to every wind change. It “talks” to your hands and harness line encouraging for an active drive with some backhand reward. Nevertheless it’s super stable, you can join the harness lines once the spot found and also choose to release the backhand and let the wing fly in the wind at reaching.

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The session started in rather light and shifty wind. Although the low end grunt clearly improved since last year, the Poweride is still a no cam and I had to struggle a bit to maintain the planing in the lulls compared to the 7m race sails around.
But now it’s getting really windy and many guys are back to the beach to rig something smaller. No problem for me, the Poweride keeps on blasting (I forgot to say.. it’s reaaaaally fast!) and I can fully appreciate its amazing stability. No hassle, no dirty trick in the gusts just more thrust and speed. And the rig is so light and easy to handle that you want to jump any chop coming around !

So this first session with my Poweride was really exciting, she exactly fills in what I expect from a 6,6 : Light, stable and super fast.. but must of all FUN !
I really enjoy blasting in slalom or bump and jump conditions with the same sail and ending a full speed track by a good jump or a duck gybe is such a pleasure!

Well done Avanti!

Eric Doux – France

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