Starboard Kode 94 WoodCarbon, Windsurfing Journal Test Special, 2010

On the beach: Starboard's Kode is available in three different constructions in 2011; WoodCarbon (tested), Wood and Technora and it comes in eight different sizes (68, 74, 80, 86, 94, 103, 113 and 123). The smaller, the more wave oriented, the bigger, the more freemove oriented. The 94 is almost smack in the middle of the range and is supposed to be a "Wave Freeestyle Machine". According to Starboard the board represents the optimal mix between power and perfect turning characteristics. The new shape for the 94 is characterized by a thin sideprofile, lowering the centre of gravity and increasing control over the board. The tail was thinned out a little more to create better turning characteristics, while additional volume was added to the rails, giving your back foot more control and making both blasting and the more difficult manoeuvres a comfortable affair. Similar to 2010, the Kode comes with a US-box 28cm crossover fin.

On the water: the changes in shape as opposed to its predecessor become apparent even after just a few rakes. Where the 2010 Kode 94 would be a good bigger wave board, the 2011 Kode has clearly shifted towards the freemove corner. The thick tail will allow you to carve the board rather well, but the turning radius is not as tolerant as it used to be. Especially tight turns will demand more pressure on the rail, and while this is easy for heavy riders, light riders will find it hard to find that pressure. Long curves are truly sensational on the Kode, and only when a light rider insists on riding down smaller eurowaves, things can get a little more difficult. But all other performance characteristics have improved: the 2011 takes off earlier, accelerates faster and feels livelier. All-in-all it is a very ggood bump-and-jump board that will use any small wave as a launch pad. The take-off feels great and windsurfer who want to do the occasional freestyle move will be served with the Kode 94.

Pros: Versatile bump-and-jump with great riding characteristics

Cons: For tight turns on the smaller waves, you'll either need weight or a good technique

Construction: WoodCarbon
Length: 237cm
Width: 60.5cm
Volume: 94l
Weight without Straps & fin: 6.7 kg
Fin length (material/system): 28cm (G10, US-box)
Recommended sail size: 4.5 - 6.5