RS 2 FEEDBACK
2014 Exocet RS2:
Firstly I need to say this review is not solicited, I love windsurfing and GPS/ slalom sailing and provide my comments for others who are looking in the market for a board and are considering the Exocet RS range. I am sure there are other brands that are fantastic as well but this review is about my first ride experience on the new RS2 from Exocet.
- Rider : Russell Dowd
- Weight : 95kg
- Height : 6'3"
- First sail : Sunday 14 July 2013
- Target one hour : Result 21.78 knots 42 gybes made 40
- Construction : Full Carbon weight 5.6KG (light) 235 long, vee tail to reduce area and no tail cut-outs.
- Colour : jet black; the board looks stunning very black tie, so I will need to be mindful about leaving it in the sun.
Marion Bay Tasmania (East Coast) Magic place no wind in town (Hobart) but very windy 45 minutes away on this beautiful bay. Conditions very powered up 6.3m sail 25 to 35 knots also with some light patches in it, but generally blasting all the time. Essentially the perfect testing ground for the Exocet RS2. Let face it, the first sail on a new board you tend to hold back a fair bit feeling for the unfamiliar and working out what adjustments to your sailing style will be required in order to feel at home on the new board. Today I had no time for that; I was on a one hour mission for the Tassie Speed Seekers. I had to go with how I set up the board out of the box. Mast track was a tad forward of centre and foot straps back as far as they will go. Fin I used my trusty Rocket 32 G10
On The Water :
The new foot straps are softer and feel more comfortable as you take off they just feel better than the older ones so well done for working on this Exocet. The board has more volume in the tail than my old board so it is on the plane quicker and with a feeling of strong acceleration into top gear. The shape of the rails is very natural and comfortable for the feet my one hour was about one hour fifteen minutes of nonstop sailing and I can honestly say in the very loaded up conditions the board sat on the water steady as a rock and I was not tired in the end it was simply a comfortable fun sail. The feeling of the board is comfort at speed I never felt like the board wanted to buck me off even in the extreme gusts the Exocet RS2 just held its line and allowed me to stay in a comfort zone. The board is full carbon and in heavy chop it feels very comfortable under foot because the vee forward just slices it up and takes the energy out of it along with those pads which are fantastic.
The Exocet RS2 key strength is it upwind ability; honestly it just rockets up wind without heaps of rider effort and holds an upwind line at speed. For a slalom board this is a fantastic asset as you are not wasting energy hunting the board upwind trying to hold your line. I was able to try speed runs then recover my position at the end of the run very easy.
Off the wind :
I never had a real chance to run to deep today unfortunately as I was focused on my one hour and then ran out of time. But the few run?s I did the RS2 felt predictable over the chop like the RS Speed it does not suck down and the boards feels very willing and free to run. I will need to play with my settings a bit to feel 100% committed off the wind but early indications are very positive. Today's peak speed 33.34 Knots
This was very different to my old Naish sp ltd board the Exocet RS2 is more compact there is more volume in the tail area this provides heaps more support in gybes the forward rails bite and hold the board on a track making commitment to gybes easier and the success rate much higher out of 42 gybes in the one hour I made 40; not all perfect but in the end the tail volume provides so much support it helps recover many mistakes. I was going into gybes so loaded in the high winds; I thought the board would spinout and catch a rail. But the more I sailed the better I got at committing with confidence and laying down the sail to dump power. All in all it rewards confident sailors and I am looking forward to improving my gybe style with this board.
This is a real step forward board for me it has a fantastic rocker line and the vee up front somehow in combination with the higher volume tail helps the board drive up wind very fast and easy to place you in a position where you have options on the slalom course. The board gybes well and with more commitment rewards the sailor who drives the rail. RS2 is very fast on the reach holds it's line and feels very comfortable underfoot.