Starboard Kode 102 WoodCarbon, Windsurf (UK), Jan - Feb 2009

High Intermediate to Expert

  •  Wood/carbon finish with Aztec graphics
  •  Easy to adjust Drake 'Slick Strap III' footstraps with a larger adjustment range
  •  'K9 anti-twist' strap inserts
  •  Inboard and outboard footstrap placement options
  •  Grippy 'Uni-directional fish scale' deck pads
  •  'Recommended' setting on the mast track for mast foot positioning
  •  Drake Crossover CNC G10 30cm fin
  •  Slightly domed deck for comfortable rider positioning
  •  5mm tail rocker
  •  Width that extends from the shoulders to behind the front straps, tapering off very gradually into the
  •    nost and very rounded pintail
  •  A fairly wide, straight outline shape

The Starboard feels stable underfoot at rest, the board having a flattish deck an lots of width around the mast track and front straps. It planes reasonably early, smoothly and with control. The board can be released well when the sailor drives off the fin in the outboard straps (including double back strap), feeling smooth and controlled over any sea state and making a very good high wink board for heavier sailors (+85kg).

In the inboard straps (with single back strap), the board feels fun, enticing the rider to try something, yet still controlled and smooth over the water, the deck pads with heel cushioning removing any 'clatter'. Whether outboard or inboard, the board's fun nature makes chop hopping and jumping very attractive, feeling easy to get out of the water and control in the air. As the wind picks up and the sea state worsens, the Kode stays controlled, vee in the hull effective, and the board continuing to sail well on all points of sail.

The Kode is very versatile when gybing, excelling in cornering with a good blend of drawn out freeride gybes and tight pivotal turns. The board offers good width and a flattish deck around the nose and mast track to make tacks achievable. It thrives off carving freestyle such as monkey gybes, and for aerial freestyle the very rounded pintail offers good pop, the nose supplying a good controlled slide backwards for tricks such as vulcans. The Kode carves well, suited to the slightly bigger sailor looking for a board to get into waves, or to use on marginal days at the coast if more experienced. For more dedicated wave and aerial freestyle performance a change of fin should be considered, as the on supplied is quite large, albeit good for freeride use.

(+) A great all-rounder with a good blend of freeride, freestyle and small waves for the slightly heavier sailor

(-) Not much to fault, but lighter sailors may want to consider the next size down in the range