GA SAILS MANIC 5.0 2023 TEST REVIEW
The Manic is a sail that allows riders to really produce a surf-oriented style that keeps the sail neutral and the rails digging hard.
Hardcore wave is where GA lays its claim for the 2023 Manic, which is said to have improved weight and optimised stretch with the brand’s newly introduced one-piece mast sleeve. In addition, the sail is built with extra light and durable 2-ply scrim in the upper panels reducing the Manic’s swing weight, along with three carbon radial load tapes extending from the clew across the centre of the sail producing a stable profile. By the luff, the Manic possesses a breathable Dacron panel, granting the mast more range to twist.
The Manic is produced to be a perfect all-round wave sail. However, there are some minor tweaks as you go through the sizes. The larger sizes deliver more power to assist in onshore conditions, while the smaller sizes have a flatter profile to assist their down-the-line potential. For the 2023 season, GA has produced the Manic in their classic red colourway and a new, classy, slick black and white colourway.
As with many GA sails, the Manic is manufactured with a few valuable extras, including a GA silicon patch above the boom cutout, which keeps the mast pocket open to allow riders to insert the mast with ease, Vario protection on the mast cap, adding durability to the top of the sail and a redesigned tack fairing that makes fold and flow at the foot of the sail much easier. The Manic also comes in an HD construction, which uses an x-ply scrim across the whole sail, including the window.
“The Manic’s inimitable combination of controllability, power and handling will fascinate you both when blasting down the line in side-off conditions and during onshore sessions in gusty winds and small waves.”
Rigged and at rest, the Manic has a modest amount of shape in its profile which is enhanced by the sail’s Dacron panel when powered. As the power is delivered, the Dacron panel breathes, bestowing the Manic with plenty of bottom-end power, and with its relatively high and centred draft, the sail drives you quickly onto the plane. Once at speed, the most notable feeling is balance, allowing the rider to sit comfortably weighted in the harness with no real interference in stance produced by changes in pressure. This feature enables the rider to set up confidently on the way out, with gratefully received time to prepare for the next manoeuvre, whether that’s boosting into the air for an aerial rotation or setting up for a smooth gybe. The consistent stance also allows the rider to generate constant high speeds where the Manic maintains its controlled sensation.
On the wave, the Manic feels light and free, asking the rider to focus their drive and attention through the board, as the sail’s neutral feel yields a surf-like nature through the turns, making it a good match for boards that have a similar surf style, like the Tabou Da Curve from GA’s sister board brand.
For UK readers, the range of the sail is undoubtedly vital in our classically changeable conditions. Whilst the Manic has some real low-end strengths, the sail also has strong tuning potential taking additional downhaul well to improve control and maintain performance as the draft stays relatively high and neutral. The Dacron panel by the luff is a strength at both ends of the wind range, ensuring the sail does the work for you and keeping you locked in.
Luff: 409 cm
Boom: 167 cm
Ideal Mast: GA C100 RDM
Available Sizes: 3.0, 3.3, 3.7, 4.0, 4.2, 4.5, 4.7, 5.0, 5.4, 5.8.