The Hover 112 is an exercise in freeride foil minimalism. It’s small but tough, and has quite an aggressive deck grip, leaving no risk of slippage whatsoever and complete control of those hydrofoil-essential fine motor skills. The edges of the board are nicely rounded and feel comfortable when handling, and aren’t going to hunt you down in the water if you stack it. The matt Durafinish paint job survived a few weeks in and out of the sandy van without so much as a scuff. A set of foot strap inserts set out in the standard Y shape are well positioned, and boosting with the tiny Hover is super fun with a low swing weight, particularly with a fast foil.
The low volume means you may need a little more power to board start than something more generously proportioned, but the trade off when flying is absolutely worth it. Throwing the board into a tack, you immediately feel the lack of weight and drag as you face directly into the wind and it makes rotational maneuvers far more snappy. We paired it with both the Kite 810 and Jetfoil 1250 Naish foil setups and it makes both feel equally dynamic; swapping onto a larger and heavier board dulled the all-important feedback noticeably.
The Kite 810 foil is an all-new wing to the range and sits somewhere between mid and high aspect with quite a bit of delta remaining in the shape along with some swept out flat wingtips. It’s constructed from a tough but lightweight-feeling chopped carbon and pairs with a redesigned 95cm mast and the high aspect HA280 stabilizer. Weight-wise, things have dropped quite a bit through the mast and fuselage, and there is barely any torsional play in the system. Naish have most definitely upped their game. It’s as quick as a ballistic missile in a straight line but has a wide enough speed range to let you go into your transitions without having to be at breakneck speeds, and it has a fairly wide sweet spot. For a foil with this much speed potential, its ease of access is impressive and it retains a playful carving ability for rapid and smooth arcing turns.
In a sentence: Pair the dinky, slim profiled Hover 112 with the Kite 810 hydrofoil, and you’ve got an excellent setup for the ambitious intermediate to expert freeride kite foiler.