Now into its second year, the Switch is a highly versatile freeride board in Naish’s exceptionally large twintip range. Great for those that share gear or want to be able to get out for both lightwind freeriding and some powered high-wind sessions. The Switch is basically two boards in one, featuring one long rail and one short rail, with straight-line inserts allowing you to swap your pads around and use the best board length for the conditions.
The Switch has borrowed a lot of its shape design from the Motion, with a freeride rocker, triple concave base and edges that are beveled – all giving the same great feeling of grip and connection with excellent speed and agility. If you like the Motion but want something with a much wider wind range, the Switch allows you to ride both those light and high-wind conditions.
Nothing else quite feels like the Switch with its asymmetric rail length. Setting up for the longer heel-side rail will give you excellent lightwind performance, and real smile inducing, heel-toe, carve ability thanks to the shorter toe-side rail, keeping those toe-side carves nice and tight. Carves are noticeably staggered from this and feel different to other asymmetrical boards with rounded tips, however there’s no denying the effect of that shorter toe-side rail. When the wind picks up you simply swap to the shorter rail for heel-side, which is instantly noticeable with pronounced better edge control and agility give more excitement to the ride. Counter-intuitively, the longer toe-side rail of the Switch is balanced and easily slides from the short heel-side to the extended toe edge and you’ll find yourself grinning hacking a heel-side carve into a wave. The only tiny compromise is felt when the water gets a bit rougher. Sometimes, the longer toe-side edge, which begins from the center line of the board, will slice the chop ahead of the heel-side edge producing some excess spray in the face.
The most obvious and unusual feeling about the Switch is when getting airborne. It’s a great feeling to have the shorter heel-side edge to carve hard upwind before launching but getting the benefit of the larger base, due to the longer asymmetric rail, to soften those landings. This is even more pronounced when landing toe-side and when at speed. Once landed toe-side the short heel-side begs for a downloop carve which you can keep nice and tight due to that shorter heel edge keeping the speed and stoke well up. If you like mixing up your styles and the conditions you ride in, don’t have the finance for multiple boards, or travel weight won’t allow two boards, the Switch is the perfect solution to this dilemma.
Access all 105 pages of the Ultimate Test #3 including this year's results.