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RRD’s Squid for 2019 reflects an overall trend in the market. As foils have got easier to ride and as the kiting market as a whole has fully embraced the world of foiling, riders and brands have realized that you don’t need a ‘boat’ under your feet to get going, and less board enables you to really embrace the world of foiling. Smaller boards are lighter, easier to travel with and – a big plus for a lot of people (like the test team at TheKiteMag!) – they are a lot tougher to ding. There are now several boards on the market with a twintip construction but the guys at RRD seem to have picked up the design brief and really run with it. This is no ‘plank’ and as soon as you pick it up you appreciate that this is a foil board that has had some serious thought put in to it. There is a ‘quad concave’ although this is more like a thick double concave through the base which then feeds out to the rails at an angle to deliver more of a ‘hull’ shape than you generally find on these wood-cored boards. There is a full EVA grip with ‘brush top striped groove’ which is soft under your feet and provides plenty of grip. Under the surface and there is a carbon stringer running all the way through which provides additional stiffness as well as strength for the foil plate. The foil plate has channels allowing you to make micro-adjustments to get your foil exactly where you want it…
On the water and the Squid sits on its edge in the water – the grooves in the EVA deck give you something to stick your feet to and provide a nice amount of grip if you are just working on your strapless take offs – then once you are up on the foil the board cruises super smoothly and cuts through any lumps or bumps you encounter before you pop it up on the foil. Once you are up and riding it provides a nice stiff and responsive platform. The nose rocker also gives a little more forgiveness if your touch down is a little quicker than you had planned for… If you are just learning foiling transitions, or if you like to come down off the foil to turn, then the Squid touches down very smoothly, with the bottom shape breaking the surface and giving you a forgiving landing, and generally buying you a bit more time when you most need it to make your turns and get back up and foiling.
In a sentence: When it comes to foil boards, the Squid is clearly not an ‘afterthought’ – this is a well thought out and very precisely engineered foil board which would be a great addition to any foil on the market.