So in the final few days before we all take a well earned Christmas and New Year break [did you like the e-card?], here's some more news on the on-going testing of the RS:X Evolution lightweight hull. Our testers have been getting pretty cold feet and hands in the icey conditions in England so we pulled them out of the water and revived them with a little seasonal good-cheer to make them talk!
Finally, we've had some of those marginal conditions that we have been waiting for. The big improvement seems to be in the VMG or angle of attack. Going upwind, the board holds its angle through the lulls. Downwind, you can take a deeper line and still not drop off the plane. As for its acceleration off the lights, the jury is still out so the difference cannot be that great. Overall, the board performs better across the range of winds but really stands out in 10-11 knots planing up wind.
In planing conditions over 12 knots, the RS:X Evo is a better performer than the existing hull. In 20 knots plus, the EVO is much more twitchy like an amped up sports car so more difficult to sail. The priority now must be to get some of the top racers from the women's fleet to give the hull a serious work-out so we can get some feedback from them.
As for durability, our testers have been out in the big air quite a lot and have experienced no problems despite being picked up by air traffic control a few times !
Next stop... somewhere warm with marginal conditions