Finally the Stars have aligned.
The money, the source, the arrival, the wind, the time… Let’s tame this beast!
All very dramatic, but the anticipation of this kite has been epic. The summer trolling through demo days agonising over brands, styles, sizes. This is a grand of my hard earned cash after all, more poiniently it will be, as this purchase has been done on credit.
Ultimately the decision was between the Cabinah Drifter or the Ozone Rio, it was a financial and a no nonsense bar that turned me from one to the other. Also, Cabrinah don’t do a Drifter in a 10m and that just cocks up all my plans.
Yes, an all out surf kite – a sign of my commitment.
It’s been years now since the transition, when I tentatively and doggedly started taking two boards to the shore. One that felt like a nice cozy sleeping bag of a board, the other that was a load of shin splitting, tooth shattering hardship and would place me firmly at the back of the class.
So in March 2016 I opened the box to the new kite, a 10m Ozone Rio in blue and orange. (Always buy blue)
I pull my crisp spangly new kite out of its bag for inspection, the single valve pump system giving me a slight butterflys when I see the dual valve, so simple. I almost feel bad as I push my old grubby little pump nozzle into the new valve – dam you Ozone, it wouldn’t have killed you to chuck in a pump.
I inflate the kite, rig my lines which are all stiff but not because they are old and scabby, these are plastic coated awesomeness. I hook in, depower and launch. I guess the first test is how it handles while I attach my board as today calls for a leash, it just sits there and waits patiently for me to get done. It’s noted.
So the first start, I feel, sets the tone for the next half hour. If I stack it like a knob, I’ll spend the rest of the session making up for it! The first down stroke pulls me up and I’m riding comfy. Ok, it’s not the most grunty of all kites, but then I’ve swapped my trusty North Rebel 9m for this. The bar pressure is like butter against the pneumatic North, but more than the Bests notable light bar.
Getting through the surf was good, enough power to get up and over walls of whitewater and out to the green stuff, I turn on flat before a nice clean bump, switch feet a power on.
I’m surfing. The power is off, it’s just me the board and the wave – the kite is just hanging out, politely waiting but tracking my every move – the penny drops and I am instantly, utterly, completely smitten.
Then I pull the power back on and it gently pulls forward. It doesn’t lurch, there’s nothing fighting me off this wave and I’m not having to contort my body awkwardly to get the right angle. I am in love.
Again, again! And spend the next 2 hours playing with my new favourite toy. Stopping briefly to over enthusiastically inform the hubster of the epic features and benefits of said kite.
They told me it would be good, and from where I’ve come from the Rio is dreamy if all you wanna do is go wiggle on some waves in style!