Based in Fehmarn, Germany, on the Baltic Sea, Core has made a number of significant changes to its 2018 lineup of kites and boards. Core also stepped up its commitment to surf and now offers three directional boards to meet the needs of wave riders worldwide. Core’s PR and Communication Manager Phil Janke answers our questions about changes to Core’s 2018 product offerings.


CORE’S XR4, GST4 AND IMPACT KITES WERE ALL TWEAKED FOR 2018. WHAT CHANGES WILL RIDERS NOTICE THE MOST AND WHAT CONDITIONS AND LEVEL OF RIDER ARE EACH BEST SUITED FOR? 

It’s hard to believe but our 5th gen XR (6th if you include the first Riot) is 10 years in the making. Yup, 10 years of iterative R&D magic resides in this beauty and we’re proud of it. The XR5 is an evolutionary step up from the impressive XR4. Featuring subtle improvements in just about every aspect of the kite, the new XR5 is more stable with better handling. We did this by adding a double seam to each strut and slightly reducing the leading edge diameter in the smaller sizes (5, 6, 7 and 8). We also optimized the tip geometry and reduced the amount of ExoTex dacron in the tip area. Together, these changes improve the XR’s already phenomenal responsiveness and super direct feeling.

The XR5 is Core’s high performance freerider within our Universal+ Series. For those not familiar with our Universal+ Series, it’s a three kite family of allrounders: the XR5, GTS4, and Free. Three amazing allrounders with different personalities and superpowers that anyone can enjoy. For the XR5, its superpower is massive boost and hangtime. The XR5 is meant for power riders who appreciate its huge wind range and control in the air or on the water. The GTS is our undisputed megaloop champ that is more suited to riders who enjoy unhooked riding. Watching six GTS4’s competing and placing in this year’s Megaloop Challenge was inspiring. Rounding out the Universal+ Series is the Free with its affinity to waves. This kite is designed for riders who enjoy kiting on just about anything.

Our Impact 2, on the other hand, is our niche specialty kite built for the few. This wakestyle machine is found under our Specialized Series banner and is our modern take on the classic C-kite, designed for purists who know what they like. The new model benefits from a thinner LE, a higher aspect ratio and a deeper C. Riders report less lateral pull, better slack and more speed. Additionally, besides adding an 8m and 15m to the range, we added a touch of sweep to improve waterstarts and depower, modified the tips and lowered the ‘V’ on the 5th line.         The new Impact 2 has already proven itself with wins at the Red Bull Megaloop Challenge and the French National Championships. Congrats to Joshua and Louka for their amazing performances!

THE SECTION, CORE’S DEDICATED WAVE KITE, WAS ALSO MODIFIED FOR 2018. HOW DOES THIS KITE DIFFER FROM THE FREE AND WHAT CHANGED?

 

The new Section 2 joins the Impact 2 under Core’s Specialized Series banner. It’s a pure wave kite built for demanding wave riders regardless of skill level. It elevates strapped, strapless, big wave and freestyle wave riders with the pro level performance and unbelievable range. If all you do is ride waves—regardless of your level—the Section 2 is for you. You almost forget this no-tug kite is following you when riding your favorite point break yet it comes alive when you need it.

Right out of the gate, the first Section was a smash hit amongst hardcore wave riders. Although the first generation Section we built was near perfect, we did find some iterative improvements to make your next wave riding experience even better without changing the original formula. We did this by finding some weight savings and adding a touch more power by optimizing the leading edge diameters. It’s also a little more compact with reworked tips, all without affecting its signature feel.

The new Section 2’s enormous range lets you easily spill the wind so you can focus on the fun stuff, that is, surfing your favorite wave. Its agility and surface-area-to-weight efficiency give you the feeling of a much smaller kite and yet it still has the pull to get you out of trouble in the troughs. The new Sections come in all sizes from 4m to 14m! It’s easy to question the fun factor of a 12 or 14m wave kite if you haven’t ridden one. If you ask Rob Kidnie, a Core team rider in Indonesia, which Section 2 is his favorite, he’ll say the 14m LW. Go ahead and try one, it just might change your view!

The Core Free, on the other hand, is an allrounder with superpowers in waves. It’s meant for kiters who prefer a bit more variety and still like to jump on their twin tips now and then. With bow-powered boosting and snappy turning, it will put a smile on your face.

IT LOOKS LIKE CORE IS BUILDING UPON ITS SURF PROGRAM, WITH THE ADDITION OF RIDERS JAMES ROPNER AND WILLOW RIVER-TONKIN ALONG WITH AN EXPANDED DIRECTIONAL SURF PROGRAM. HOW SHOULD A RIDER CHOOSE BETWEEN THE RIPPER 3, 720 AND GREEN ROOM BOARDS?       

It’s true, we’ve been busy adding team riders and new surf gear. We build surfboards we want to ride ourselves, the kind of boards that take a beating and yet deliver the smooth, responsive feel of a signature Core surfboard. We believe our explosive growth in surfboards has a lot to do with our construction methods. Our boards use the same glass construction the pros use on the surfing tour. Core’s roots come from a custom board shop making glass boards over 30 years ago. So, we have a bit of experience building the right amount of flex to absorb even the roughest of chop and the shapes wave riders are looking for.

The Ripper 3 is our performance allrounder. It’s super capable in head high to knee high waves. The shape gives it race car handling and stability in the turns. The volume distribution builds confidence without making it feel too ‘big’ and the double stringer design gives it durability and secure mounting for strap inserts. We think the Ripper 3 makes a great travel companion wherever you’re going.

The Green Room is our big wave board featuring less volume and width than our bestseller Ripper 3. Designed for experts, this board will not let you down when it gets really big. It’s a handful when conditions aren’t perfect, but when you’re favorite spot goes off, you’ll be glad you brought your Green Room.

As the kitesurfing sport continues to evolve, new disciplines like strapless freestyle become all the rage. The new Core 720 is our interpretation of strapless, no-nose boards that make aerial 360s and other cool off-the-lip tricks look so easy.

Your perfect surfboard doesn’t necessarily depend on the rider’s weight. We believe other factors riding level and style also have an important impact on your board selection. Our surfboard finder on our website offers some guidance in picking the perfect setup. If in doubt, call us or visit your local authorized Core retailer and they will help you out.      THE FUSION TWIN TIP IS NOW IN ITS THIRD ITERATION. WHAT WILL THE MOST NOTICEABLE DIFFERENCE BE FOR RIDERS AND WHERE DOES THIS BOARD FIT IN YOUR TWIN TIP LINE?       

The full carbon Fusion 3 is Core’s Swiss Army® knife of twin tips. If you’re going to buy one twin tip that handles any discipline in flat water to choppy surf, then we can’t think of a better choice (we may be a little biased here). The Paulownia wood core worked so well in the Fusion 2 that we further expanded its use and carried the wood even closer to the rails. This makes the third generation lighter and increases the board’s stored potential energy (that which gives the board its pop). We also added a new multi-channel hull, progressive rails, a deeper rocker line, and slightly wider tips. The Fusion 3’s new VEE shaped rocker is more pronounced under your feet and progressively reduces towards the tips. Some of Fusion 3’s new features come from the Imperator 6, Carved Custom’s (Core’s bespoke division) latest masterpiece. It’s impossible for us to distill the above improvements into a few words. That’s why we call it the Swiss Army® knife of twin tips because it does everything exceptionally well.

The Choice 2, is Core’s all-in-one carbon freestyler which you can use with straps or boots. And the Bolt 2 is our uncompromising wakestyler, a boot only twin tip.

YOUR UNION PRO PADS AND STRAPS LOOK PRETTY SWEET. TELL US ABOUT THEM.  

We’re glad you like ‘em. Our new Union Pro 2 pads and straps now feature 3D stance. What is 3D stance? In addition to three longitudinal positions and 11 different foot angle options, the new footpad can be moved easily closer or further away from the board edge. The slightly thinner orthotic EVA footpads with its ‘toe grabber’ 3D surface will hold your feet securely, even on those off-balance landings. Similar customization options are found on the improved straps to give you the perfect fit even with booties on! The dual velcro strap design features inthe- water pitch with longitudinal and height adjustments to support your foot precisely. We lined the strap interior with EVA and neoprene while protecting the exterior with durable synthetic leather. Although we’re confident you’ll find a perfect fit given the new Union Pro 2’s unbelievable customization options, try them at your local authorized Core reseller or demo event.


Want more gear info? Get the latest product info from all the top brands all in one convenient place with Tkb’s 2018 Buyer’s Guide.