With a new control bar, lighter kite canopy material and a complete makeover of their surfboard line, Core has a lot to celebrate for its 20th anniversary in the new year. Based out of Europe’s kiting mecca in Fehmarn, Germany, Core’s entire 2021 lineup has undergone many performance and construction changes to sweeten their range, feel and durability. Moritz Reitemeir breaks it all down for us.
The upcoming year will definitely be quite special for us since it comes along with the 20th anniversary of our company. Even though Core Kiteboarding was founded only in 2007, it was 2001 when the first Carved Customs twin tip was produced, heralding the start of one the most successful and premium carbon twin tips— the Carved Imperator. Within the last 20 years, the whole brand experienced significant growth. We have been evolving since the beginning and it hasn’t changed throughout the years. We cannot wait to make the next year even better and more exciting than the one before. That’s the reason why we have several surprises up our sleeve for next year—we hope that you are looking forward to it as much as we are!
IS THERE A SINGLE INNOVATION THAT YOU WOULD FIRST LIKE TO HIGHLIGHT?
Outlining a single innovation is a tricky thing to do since most of our products are a result of the precise interplay of high-end materials, German engineering and a lot of dedication to small details. However, if there’s one thing to point out this year, it would most likely be our new ExoTex Light material. After we introduced this already in 2019 with the XLITE, our specialized hydrofoiling kite, the new material now found its way into our Universal+ Series of kites, the Nexus 2 and the GTS6. The ExoTex Light incorporates a reengineered radial thread pattern and a special emulsion process that makes it approximately 10% lighter than our regular Exo Tex. The reduced weight leads to better drifting and turning speed, which are important attributes for freestylers and wave riders.
HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN THE KITE MODELS IN YOUR 2021 LINEUP IN A NUTSHELL? FOR EACH KITE, WHAT IS THE INTENDED TYPE OF RIDING AND TARGET USER AND KEY CHANGES FOR 2021?
Having an easy to navigate kite lineup is one of our key intentions, which is why we split our kites into two categories: the Universal+ and Specialized Series. All our Universal+ kites are universally easy to ride and enjoy. These high-performance allrounders handle just about anything. What sets them apart is their individual superpower—a specialty or expertise in one discipline. Simply select the Universal Series kite with the superpower you prefer. For example, our very first release this year was the Nexus 2, with its superpower in waves. A hybrid between our Section wave kite and the GTS5, the Nexus is a fast turning, powerful fun machine. The overall reduced weight due to the ExoTex Light made the second-generation Nexus even better at drifting, with even faster turning, which is obviously crucial for all wave riders out there. There is no doubt that megaloops are the GTS6’s superpower. Its Future-C-shaped canopy and Radical Reaction Tips make it the top choice for freestylers. Thanks to the new ExoTex Light, this year’s 6th generation received larger diameter struts, which better resist bending and therefore deliver a sportier, punchier feel when looping. The XR6’s superpower is it’s high-performance freeriding. Our five strut freerider has ridiculous stability on the water and in the air. The bow-style concave trailing edge, Delta-like sweptback wings, and unique bridle system deliver huge depower and linear control for easy upwinders and fantastic boosts. Talking about boosts, it’s worth it to mention that the five highest recorded WOO jumps are currently on an XR—and we can’t wait to see who from our team will smash the next world record!
Contrary to the Universal+ Series, all of the kites in our Specialized Series are radically built for only one purpose. The latest member is the Xlite, which we released in 2019. It’s lightweight, one-strut construction makes it the perfect choice for all foilers looking for a fast and reactive kite that stays in the air even if the wind drops to a minimum. A true wave phenom is our Section 3. It comes with excellent drift and quick loops to stay afloat in onshore wind conditions and fast, big waves. The Section 3’s massive depower makes it effortless to stay in front of the window in all offshore conditions. Last but not least, the Impact 2 is our ultimate unhooked machine. A pure C-kite with five lines, its skinny ExoTex airframe, deep-C canopy, increased trim options, and extra sizes fuel its explosive power. It’s a legit wakestyle beast for all legit wakestylers out there.
WHAT ARE THE NEW AND/OR THE MOST POPULAR MODELS IN YOUR TWIN TIP LINEUP? HOW HAS THAT CHANGED FOR 2021?
Many of our customers end up buying our Choice twin tip for the good reason that it is an absolute freestyle allrounder. No matter if you’re into riding with straps or boots, the reinforced inserts for both riding styles make this no longer a question of the board, but just of your mood. Our latest iteration, the Choice 4, delivers improved versatility and performance while retaining its proven CNC-milled Paulownia wood core and Cartan carbon construction that Choice riders demand. The new Cartan-powered Katana channels add tip stiffness to better store and release your energy generated when loading the edge. It also features a new . length deck channel between the straps that raises the outer deck by approximately 2mm. This reduces the rail thickness which makes it is a little more forgiving. Similar updates were implemented into the new Bolt 4. Contrary to the Choice and Fusion, this board is built to be ridden with boots only. A total of four layers of our proprietary Cartan carbon fiber makes this board the toughest and most durable and radical board we offer. Its easy-fix grindbase and bombproof inserts are fully rail-ready and establishes the Bolt 4 as the ultimate choice for all wakestylers and park riders. Lastly, there is our Swiss army knife of twin tips, the Fusion 4. The straps-only board satisfies all but the most hardcore freestyle ambitions. As long as you don’t see any boots in your future, it’s your pick. As with our other twin tips, it is built of Cartan carbon. With its unique 30° carbon layup it provides more flex along the length of the board and less flex between the heel and toe. The high filament count also requires less resin which saves weight. Cartan carbon improves pop, softens landings, and gives our boards that signature Core feel.
WHAT ARE THE NEW AND/OR THE MOST POPULAR MODELS IN YOUR SURFBOARD LINEUP? HOW HAS THAT CHANGED FOR 2021?
For 2021, we basically turned our whole surfboard lineup upside down and made significant improvements with new shapes and constructions that we are excited to share with you.
Let’s start with the Ripper 4, our all-around wave warrior. It’s a matter of passion that we stick to the classic glass surfboard construction which offers the unique flex a glass board is known for. But besides the construction, it is a new board. The new Ripper 4 features a wider, fish-inspired profile and new mini swallow tail. The additional width and volume focused around your feet make it easier than ever to ride under-powered or sloppy waves. We reduced fin toe-in by 4mm to give it more drive and added a mini swallow tail for a little extra bite in the corners. Just remember to demo the smaller sizes too. You may find your perfect Ripper is one size smaller now.
Coming in 2021, the new 720 is for all strapless freestyle enthusiasts and features not only a completely new hull but also a more durable and significantly lighter build. An all-new channeled, quad concave hull and stringer-less EPS composite construction gives the second generation board next-level handling and durability. Its completely new construction starts with a high-density EPS foam blank that’s topped with 4mm PET (recycled polyethylene terephthalate) honeycomb and sandwiched within E-Glass and epoxy resin. Think explosive aerials, chop busting comfort, heel dent-resistant landings and gravity-defying stick-to-your-feet rotations. That’s what you’ll get in the new 720.
Last but not least, releasing in 2021, is the Green Room—built for what it’s called: getting tubed and enjoying the view from inside the green room. If you ride overheads (and bigger) and prefer a narrower, faster, and more responsive surfboard, then this is your board. The second generation retains its proven shape but gets a new stringer-less, hexagon construction that’s tougher and lighter than ever. Similar to the 720, it’s built from a high- density EPS foam that’s topped with a recycled PET (polyethylene terephthalate) hexagon and E-Glass sandwich. The hexagon foam features channels that link the top and bottom glass layers making it super strong and durable.
Do you have any accessories or other product lines you would like to briefly introduce or discuss changes/highlights for 2021?
The first product we released this year was something really special for us—the Sensor 3 control system. We spent a lot of time and effort in the development process and we think it paid off. The major goal throughout this process was to keep the distinct characteristics of the Sensor 2S, one of the cleanest bars on the market, and make improvements for the Sensor 3. The revolutionary bar ends include our Stealth Winders and allows users to switch between a storage mode, where folded out winders keep your lines rolled up around the bar, and flight mode, where those winders fold into the bar end to achieve a maximum grip and ergonomics over the whole bar. The redesigned grip layer makes cruising even more comfortable and ensures effective control of the bar when needed.
Our bars are unique and eliminate the unnecessary in favor of simplicity. Avoiding the floating EVA molded bar ends, seen by many of our competitors, we’ve created a simple connection between the steering lines and the bar to ensure direct kite steering and feedback. The steering line attachment points come with another feature: with the Stealth Winders folded out, you can simply push on that attachment point and twist it around, making it possible to reduce your bar width by 3.5cm in seconds. What we did not change is the Auto Untwist feature, where our two PU covered depower lines are still double-guided through the center of the bar. They’re still connected to the QR with a ceramic swivel that untwists your front lines after every loop or rotation without ease.
Talking about the QR, you’ll also find another significant change: we moved from the twist to a push release. As a GKA member, our engineers have been part of the team who recently developed and published the new ISO norm, which should increase the safety for every single kitesurfer out there. Even though the release direction is not defined in that norm, it was our goal to unify that direction amongst all brands. Since it became quite a hard job to convince other brands to move to a twist release, we went for the push.
Our new CIC release is something we’re really proud of. We developed it from scratch and after testing hundreds of prototypes, we came to a final product that not only meets the same demands of simplicity and cleanness in the product but also features a super low release force and effortless reassembling similar to a seatbelt. Talking of customization, you can also mount a bigger wakestyle loop or a dedicated slider loop.
All of this holds true for the Sensor 3 model, which comes with standard 24m lines. Besides that, we offer the Sensor 3+, which has the same components as the Sensor 3, but with our Vario Lines that can be split into 18 / 20 / 22 / 24 meters. Check out our website to find all the details about the Sensor 3, especially our Sensor 3 Pro carbon masterpieces.