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The minds of kiteboarders have been consumed by the irresistible allure of untamed, remote blue water locations for as long as the sport has existed – the exhilaration of sharing head-high waves as they peel their way down untouched reefs all day long with your closest friends, to butter-flat lagoons where endless opportunities await. These azure dreams of adventure have revolutionized the way we think about our quiver of kites these days. We can’t begin to fathom the days of lugging around cumbersome golf bags, carrying five or six kites for our own peace of mind. A great example here was on our recent trip to the Caribbean, where we decided to put Nobile’s second edition of The One to the ultimate lightwind freeride test. These remote island destinations are renowned for their light easterly trade winds and although we were confident that The One should excel in these kinds of conditions, we couldn’t help but feel a little uneasy packing a single kite for our two-week long adventure. The One v2 is a mono-strut kite engineered to excel in the realm of lightwind freeriding by delivering a playful, predictable experience for riders who aren’t as interested in pushing the limits but to immerse themselves in the very spirit of exploration and self-expression that defines the essence of kiting.
The first session of the trip was an offshore spot, notoriously gusty and often well out of reach for most entry-level kiters. From our very first tack, it was clear that the upwind angle of the kite was one of its most defining attributes; paired with a light bar pressure with a generous amount of travel on the bar we sucked up the severe gusts that in the past would have pulled too hard on the bar for a comfortable session. The peace of mind we felt in these sketchier conditions was invaluable, as it enabled us to focus on the joy of exploring uncharted waters rather than constantly worrying about if we were going to make it back to the beach okay. It’s with this same amount of control and comfort that Nobile has approached performance on the v2 – we were constantly surprised by how comfortably the v2 generated power. An upgrade to the bridle system has not only brought more durability but had us effortlessly steering the kite single-handedly in both directions. The v2 continues to deliver a fast-pivoting turn, thanks to its narrow angular Teijin Dacron leading edge that has found the perfect balance between stability and flex. This year’s leading edge has been stiffened to remove the occasional nervous, overreactive feeling that sporadically accrued during strong wind sessions on the v1. We flew the v2 in a range of conditions and we were blown away by this year’s overall stability; having had numerous sessions out in the waves we discovered a kite that remains poised with incredible leeward drift.
Single-strut kites are notorious for losing their form and even becoming unsteerable as you dump the power, but we are happy to report that The One v2 not only held its shape as it drifts down the line, it also had the ability to stay responsive allowing us to feel connected whilst knowing where the kite was throughout the window. The kite’s ability to pivot seemingly instantaneously allowed us to position ourselves early on the waves, giving us ample time to spot the lip line. With an effortless pulling in of the bar, we generated instant power, shooting us precisely up the face of the wave. The One remains one of the perkier, agile kites in the single strut market but thanks to this year’s upgrades it feels more refined.
The second rendition of The One has stayed true to the Polish brand’s original design philosophy, a minimalistic innovative approach that saw its inaugural single-strut kite take the Curveball Innovation Award in The Ultimate Test #3. The simple panel layout and further weight reduction saw us getting onto the water sooner whilst being able to handle an incredibly large range of wind. Nobile isn’t one to follow the crowd and has a history of creating standout products that compete with the mainstream brands in the industry. The second version of The One is no exception to this rule, delivering a mono-strut, mid-aspect design, which contrasts the more traditional mono-strut kites on the market and the One v2 delivered some memorable freeride sessions, from foiling around the outer reef in complete bliss to freeriding the flats when the wind picked up. The One remains a versatile and fun-loving kite designed to perform exceptionally well in both high and low wind conditions.