GOYA MARK 2 PRO 7.8 2020 TEST REVIEW
Highly tensioned and high-brow in appearance, set and detailing, the benefits of the Mark 2’s tuning range should be fully explored to realise its capabilities, rewarding with a rider-focussed nature, and exuding performance and dependability.
The Mark 2 has been in the Goya lineup for several seasons now, classed as their twin-cam performance freerace offering. Mirroring the sizes available in the range of its no-cam sibling, the Mark Pro (but with the addition of a 9.5m), it sports a similar colourway in neon yellow/fuchsia, and is also party to the brand’s new two year cycle, meaning this incarnation of the Mark 2 remains current for 2021 too. Reading the Mark 2’s literature highlights that the brand’s designer, Jason Diffin, has approached the concept of a cammed sail in a different manner to others, intending for the sail to be used in a similar wind range to its no-cam counterpart. In other words, it is crafted to be extremely powerful, so that you don’t need to sail powered or overpowered (when most other riders are changing down) to get the most from it. Constructed with the use of monofilm in its main panels, it sees two wide x-ply luff panels, and a familiar Kevlar scrim in the foot. Attention to detail is as we have come to expect from the Goya loft, with alternating battens, carbon stretch control tendons, Rip Stop material in the luff sleeve and a titanium ring used as the single clew eyelet. Rigged in a conventional manner on a Hundred Pro SDM (whilst also compatible with RDM), the set of the Mark 2 is more of a work of art than a handcrafted functional object; there’s not a blemish or crease to be seen in any of its panels. The amount of tension required is guided by the dot at the end of the upper mini-batten, forcing plenty of luff curve into the mast and locking a good deal of deep camber forward in the draft. The final act of applying the tack strap then adds tension through the foot panel to compliment that in the sail’s leading edge.
The Mark 2 Pro offers white knuckle cam sail speed and cam sail stability without needing to rig “oversized”. You can enjoy the blistering speed and range of the sail without feeling like you are wrestling a dinosaur.
Used on a large board in marginal winds, the Mark 2 makes its presence known from the off, feeling large and solid in the hands, the deep forward draft pulling positively. Set with the prescribed amount of downhaul, we did find that the amount of luff curve and skin tension in the sail meant we struggled to really pump it effectively onto the plane, or even make the most of the pull the sail generates. It simply didn’t seem to translate into bottom end grunt. Releasing some downhaul pressure instantly remedied this, re-connecting the mid-leech and softening the sail’s leading edge, offering more response. Once going the Mark 2 is easy to get on with, feeling supremely stable and dependable in the hands. The centre of effort is placed well forward in the sail, providing useable feedback and reaction, and involving the rider, without feeling overwhelming for the less experienced pilot.
As the wind increases and pressure builds, it’s worth re-establishing the downhaul tension, returning the looseness in the leech to the dot … and even beyond. The Mark 2 twists beautifully, whilst its deep profile remains locked in place, giving it a safe, secure character – particularly welcome in turbulent seas. Loaded onto a fast freerace or slalom board, the Mark 2 will provide the engine to depend and rely on. It may not have that ultimate, slippery, top-end efficiency of a select few on test here, but if you want a rock-steady partner that has assured and balanced handling at all times, the Goya will undoubtedly back you. In transition the Mark 2’s cams rotate positively, the forward facing camber encouraging the sail to pivot easily round the mast, its power ready to be pulled back on once the rider is ready and in place. And finally, used for wind foiling, the light-wind tuning ability of the Mark 2 was a real bonus, helping to breathe life and energy into the lightest session.
Luff: 478 cm
Boom: 214 cm
Ideal mast: Goya 460 cm RDM or SDM
Available sizes: 5.4, 5.8, 6.2, 6.6, 7.2, 7.8, 8.5, 9.5.
Other sails in this test:
THE LINE UP