Sizes Available: 3, 4, 5, 7, 9, 11m
Sizes Tested: 7m
The Contra 1 Strut has quickly garnered a reputation as one of the best kites for lightwind freeriding and has proven a versatile addition to any kite quiver.
With its single strut design, this light and nimble kite allows the use of much smaller sizes to maximize foilboardings true potential.Featherweight control and amazing drift characteristics allow for low angles of attack while on foil, and the rear line tension increases steering impulse even when depowered.
This dynamic kite design will put an optimized Contra light wind kite in your hands whether you ride a twin tip, surfboard, or a foil board.
Visit for more info: www.cabrinha.com/products/contra-1-strut
The 7m Contra 1-strut was the perfect match for testing hydrofoils with its super light and intuitive feel at the bar and incredible maneuverability that seemed to put the Contra exactly where it needed to be no matter what the wind or the foil under our feet happened to be doing. With tremendous drift and impressive unloaded steering capabilities, the Contra is an impressively balanced single-strut kite that we never wanted to put away.
Inflation Valve: Bayonet valve / no attachment required
Attachments: Center Bridle: Larks head / Wingtip bridle: Knots
Centerline Split: Low-V
Front Bridle Options: Single setting bridle / Fixed no pulleys
Design and Features
The Contra is a single-strut platform with a medium aspect airframe with a sweptback leading edge that ends with solidly square wingtips which give you excellent steering control at any angle of attack. The leading edge on the smaller sizes seems fairly narrow and aligned with the Contra’s low windage and high efficiency. The Contra comes with Cabrinha’s large diameter bayonet-style inflation valve that requires no nozzle on the end of your standard pump hose for a quick and easy pump up. The distribution points to the single strut are molded rubber with no hard edges and the hose is larger, so you get minimal canopy wear and fast deflation at the end of your sessions; all small details that matter. The leading edge has a single setting bridle that is fixed, which doesn’t use any pulleys or sliders to adjust its angle of attack. The center bridle ends in a larks head and the wingtip attachment point ends in a knot. Similarly, the wingtip attachment point has a single setting, which contributes to the design’s lightweight and impeccable handling. The Cabrinha team has distilled all the essential details into the Contra, from the fixed bridle to the streamlined use of Nano Ripstop and High Tenacity Dacron materials, to create a super-efficient but stable airframe that doesn’t rely on battens or anything extra beyond a perfectly balanced design that gives this single-strut impeccable canopy control.
The feel on our 7m Contra was extremely agile, which falls in line with the overall lightweight feel that extends to the bigger sizes in the Contra 1 strut quiver. The 7m Contra never felt quirky or fidgety like some smaller kites can, instead it found the perfect balance between intuitive power delivery and quick and responsive turning that allowed us to place the Contra wherever we wanted but without getting lost or loosing track of it when our attention wandered elsewhere (as it tends to do while foilboarding).
With its super lightweight airframe, the Contra is capable of floating overhead through lulls and drifted in the middle of the window impeccably well. The Contra’s drift and superb power delivery allowed us to comfortably ride hydrofoils at any angle in the wind window while the Contra was happy to float, change direction or power up at the flick of the bar. The power delivery across the throw felt progressive and intuitive and the bar pressure was light and comfortable on the arms, yet we always could feel where the kite was in the window. Even in the smaller sizes, the Contra delivers good power, and if more is needed, it is very capable of finding power with deep strokes in the power zone to get you through any holes. For those freeride kiters that believe less is more, the Contra 1-strut offers great all-around power with a light and tight pack up that keeps kiteboarding simple and clean.
The Contra has a ton of depower built into the canopy so you can dump all the power in a second. One of the key concepts behind the wingtip design is that the Contra responds to steering inputs even when you’ve got the bar sheeted out and there’s very little load in the lines. This helped us keep the kite positioned in threshold conditions as well as control the kite’s trajectory during drifting when you have very little line tension. In terms of relaunch the Contra rotated up onto one wingtip reliably every time with minimal bar input and released into the air fairly deep in the window for a solid recovery every time.
Even in its smaller sizes, the Contra 7m retained its all-terrain versatility with solidly nimble handling that still produced user-friendly power that perfectly accentuated our hydrofoil sessions. While the Contra 1-strut is more than just a foilboarding kite with strong potential for super fun surf sessions and or a daily driver for a casual freeride kiter, we just can’t shake the smiling feeling this finely tuned single-strut brought to our foil sessions.
We rode the Contra with the Overdrive Quickloop 1x bar. Read the review here.
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