Phantom 295 the most versatile board on the market?
I am 86 kg and an experienced windsurfer, though not very advanced, having all types of boards (wave, freerides, slaloms and Formulas + an old Fanatic Cat that I have not used in years).
I have been looking for a long distance surfing board and gear which may work well in winds from 4 – 24 knots, having it’s best performace at 12 – 14 knots. I value control in chop, early planning and ability to go high also in light wind most. I find Formula to technical and fragile in open waters with big waves, and was very exited when the Phantom 295 was released. Especially I was attracted by the wing design, allowing early planning, and the compared to the NP Olympia board the Phantom was much lighter and probably more controllable?
Now the Phantom 295 has not established itself as the allround board I thought it would become, but is promoted as a raceboard for light weights. For guys in my class of weight the Phatom 320 is recommended on this Forum, but I consider the Phantom 295 to be a bit on long side to control in big chop, so the 320 is not an option at all for me.
Today I am using my Futura and Formulas as long distance boards. But the Futura is not an early planning board even using 9.5 sqm sail which becomes impossible to control if the wind increases. With a smaller sail I find the Futura difficult to control when overpowered, but I feel safer with the Futura then with my formulas in waves (1-2 meter).
I have considered the ultrasonic, and discarded it as it is absolutely hopeless in non planning conditions. I have considered the RR Freemove, but they are not much better in non planning conditions.
Now I am considering the JP lightwind boards or the Phantom 295, but the profile of the Phantom as a board for sailors under 80 kg makes me uncertain if the Phantom is the right choice for me. In addition none of the dealers in the Nordic Countries are marketing the Phatom anymore, there is no way to test it and it seems like Starboard has given up the ambition to make this board a hit. This is not signals giving me confidence to buy the Phantom. I am aware of that an allround board will not be the best board in almost any condition, but is it good enough to give pleasure in most conditions, and is it controllable for a big range of conditions with a given sail size? Comments are appreciated.