Words by: Gael Espeche
Photos/Video by: Barlin Brito
It’s a beautiful February day Cabarete, Dominican Republic. The wind starts to build up slowly with waves that pumped all morning and keep teasing me at the horizon. Then, it just kicks in an hour later. It’s time for an amazing wing session on the reef break!
I run to the house after a nice walk and stretch on the beach. I grab the brand-new Strike V2 in 5m, Rocket Surf 4’ 6” (33 L), 85cm high modulus carbon mast, a Phantom foil 840cm2, my Manera Boom vest and a helmet. Let’s rig the wing and get on the water!
After a 4 hour session in beautiful waves and practicing some jumps and tricks, I was stoked!
The Strike V2 is a refined evolution of its predecessor that riders will feel at ease to push their abilities a bit further than before.
We find again the same attention to details and quality materials including Dacron and Polyester which are best suited for the wing design. This keeps this wing super light, structurally sound, durable and reinforced where needed.
The improved design of the Strike V2 can be seen starting with the construction of the wing.
The stitching of the leading edge has been reworked to make a flatter surface between each sewed section which gives this wing a premium feel.
The leash has improved; the elasticity and its length have changed for the better and the actual wrist strap has a wider Velcro that ensures the rider stays connected to his/her wing. I tried it in 7ft waves and wiped out in heavy whitewash and the leash did not disappoint!
The pre-loaded canopy has gained a bit more stiffness and a change of panel orientation which is very welcomed for executing freestyle moves and provides better hang time when jumping and smoother landings. Thus, the Strike V2 has gained control and forward traction and keeps its ability to waterstart early but also maintains its versatility on the low-end.
It is important to note that we are now talking about a performance wing, thus it’s important to make sure you choose the correct wing size for your session. The Swing V2 will now be the wing that has a better low end since it has more flex in the canopy and is an ideal wing for beginners. Still the added stiffness of the Strike V2’s canopy does give an improved upwind ability, adapts itself to absorb gusts very well and has better stability in its wind range.
A nice improvement with regards to construction is also the handles! They are thicker, comfortable, still soft for weight reduction and well placed on the boom. This gives the Strike V2 a more comfortable ride which can extend your sessions.
The actual profile of the wing has also been tweaked with a narrower wingspan and wider chord. It feels a bit more compact with its redesigned boom and a flatter profile; this change can really be felt while practicing your tacks. Those transitions are now easier than ever to execute. It really surprised me how easy the wing could pass over my head effortlessly with no drag and great speed!
The Strike V2 is a very welcomed wing in your quiver that keeps the ultra-lightweight characteristic of its predecessor and brings a more versatile, controlable, stable, pleasant and comfortable ride. It will pull you forward to reach new riding abilities and help you progress in wave riding flow and freestyle!
The Strike V2 is much more than a wing, it is predictable and its fluidity lets you enjoy and adapt even more to the motion of the elements than ever before.