As VP of sales for Cabrinha for over a decade, Todd Greaux has overseen the launch of the industry’s first bow kite, helped a number of young riders realize their dreams through sponsorship and perhaps best of all, gets to test and ride all the toys in the Cabrinha lineup. We caught up with Todd in between his busy travel schedule to find out the highlights of the 2018 product line.
CABRINHA WON A PRESTIGIOUS 2017 IDEA AWARD FOR ITS FIREBALL CONTROL SYSTEM. WHAT IS THE CRITERIA FOR THIS AWARD AND CAN WE EXPECT ANY CHANGES FOR 2018?
The IDEA Awards are given based on how well the product delivers on the following points: innovation, benefit to user, responsibility, benefit to client, visual appeal and aesthetics, design research, usability and emotional factors and design strategy. The Fireball control system rewrites many common assumptions about how we interact and control kitesurfing’s main power source. We set aside the current hook and loop technology that we have all taken for granted and questioned how we could improve on this if we started from scratch. Then we proceeded to build a new system from the ground up. The second year of Fireball will see a new smaller spreader bar to accommodate smaller riders. Year three will see an exciting evolution to the concept with Fireball 2.0.
FOR THE 2018 KITE LINE, CABRINHA HAS SWITCHED TO AN ALL NEW MATERIAL. WHY DID CABRINHA MAKE THE SWITCH AND WHAT WILL THE OVERALL AFFECT BE ON THE NEW LINEUP?
In 2017 we introduced our purpose-designed High Tenacity Dacron (HTD) into our Apollo kite. In 2018 we implemented High Tenacity Dacron into all of our kite products. This exclusive material allows us to control the elongation of our inflated structures, specifically the leading edge (LE) structure by placing the ultra high tenacity yarns with an increased thread count on the warp orientation of the LE. The benefit is a more accurate kite design with less deformation in flight. The material has lower water absorbency, is quicker to dry, and is highly resistant to ultraviolet light damage. Kites with the HTD material will have a longer lasting finish which maintains the kite’s performance over a longer period of time.BOTH THE FX AND DRIFTER GOT MAJOR REBOOTS THIS YEAR AND CABRINHA’S CONTROL SYSTEMS WERE ALSO UPGRADED. WHAT CHANGED WITH THE KITES, WHERE DO THEY FIT IN YOUR KITE LINE AND WHAT TWEAKS WERE MADE TO THE 2018 CONTROL BARS?
The Drifter received an all new design in 2018. The design mandate was to widen the usage of the Drifter to adapt to the growing surf freestyle interests while locking in the Drifter’s legendary drift stability. We now have two distinct ways to ride the Drifter depending on your preference. The more surf freestyle mode has lighter bar pressure than the original while the pure surf mode replicates the original Drifter control and feeling. In a similar effort, the FX had undergone design changes which allow the rider to tune the kite to their nuanced freestyle preference. You can choose settings which favor unhooked freestyle or hooked in riding.
For the 2018 collection, our control systems have also gone through a number of upgrades to improve performance and ergonomics. The center fitting on the control bar has a larger diameter hole that reduces friction on the depower main line. The control bar has a new ergonomic oval grip and different durometer material to increase comfort, durability, and grip while reducing hand fatigue.
On the fixed length control system collection, the control bar has newly redesigned low profile bar ends made from molded EVA with folding floats. The design makes the same length control bar shorter. There are rear line trim adjustment knots hidden in the folding seam of the floats, and the combination bar end/ float offers more floatation. The molded EVA is a more durable product that will last longer.
Additionally, the Quickloop has been redesigned inside and out. Inside, the quick release mechanism will release using less force. Outside, the assembly has been engineered to have soft round transitions and an overall ergonomic look and feel. The operation of Quickloop is identical, so there is nothing new for the user to learn.
Lastly, a 23cm Fireball spreader bar will be available in the next few months. The current 27cm size is too wide for some customers and this makes a big difference for those that want a smaller spreader bar since Fireball makes reaching the trim much easier for smaller riders.THE DOUBLE AGENT FOILBOARD WAS INTRODUCED IN 2016. WHAT CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE FROM CABRINHA FOR ITS 2018 OFFERING?
The 2018 Double Agent has an all new board shape and design. The shape is designed to achieve two things: in the foilboarding mode, the wide nose will assist in the recovery whenever the rider momentarily comes off the foil and the nose connects with the water. In the surf-skate mode (without the foil) the shape is more conducive to pushing through turns. The Double Agent now comes with 40cm and 60cm graduated mast lengths available in order to reduce the learning curve, or foil in shallow areas.
THE ACE, ONE OF CABRINHA’S LONGSTANDING TOP-SELLING TWIN TIPS AND THE TRONIC HAVE SEEN SOME MAJOR CHANGES THIS YEAR. EXPLAIN WHAT THEY ARE AND THE DIFFERENCES FANS OF EACH BOARD WILL NOTICE THE MOST.
The Ace pushes further into the high performance freeride / big air category to match the demands of aerial specialists like Nick Jacobsen. We’ve put deep channels in the tip for unmatched grip while loading off your back foot. We’ve also added rail channels for better grip while riding balanced on both feet. Both shaping features allow the rider to load against the kite seconds before sending the kite into a mega jump. The Ace now comes in carbon and wood constructions.
The new Tronic 149 has a semi directional outline and an offset stance option to favor riding in the surf. The directional capability of the Tronic 149 also made it a candidate for racing in any IKA-sanctioned twin tip class including the Youth Olympic games and its qualifying events. Hence its IKA registration.