FANATIC QUAD TE 81L 2016 TEST REVIEW
Along with the Stubby and TriWave, Fanatic have also been busy refining their Quad range for the new season. Taking the largest size out of the range, they altered the remaining sizes by increasing the concave/double concave bottom shape, and incorporated a new rocker-line that makes use of their latest ‘pronounced tail-kick / flat spot’ concept. In addition, they’ve moved the rider’s stance back on the board slightly, made the deck flatter for more stability, and adjusted the tow-in of the side fins. No small change then…! Available solely in Team Edition construction, making use of their tried and tested Innegra carbon light finish technology, it comes complete with the usual high quality finish and fittings.
“For 2016, we took the most radical waveboard within the Fanatic range to the next level. Highly desirable to riders driven by full rail carves, late turns and radical down-the-line wave-sailing. If that’s you, the all-new 2016 Quad represents what your dreams are made of.”
With the smallest quoted volume in the group, it wasn’t surprising that the Quad 81 felt one of the smallest underfoot at idle. Nevertheless, once power is delivered and it’s turned off the wind, the 81 releases readily and accelerates rapidly to feel fast and stable yet distinctly lively underfoot. It has a fantastic mix of feeling composed and planted when charging over harsh chop, yet instantly responsive as the rider moves his weight from foot to foot or rail to rail. It did prefer being powered properly, rather than half baked in marginal conditions, when attributes such as the narrow tail, pronounced tail kick and heavier G10 fins seemed to combine to hold the board back. That said, we did try it with the central fins moved back in their boxes, which seemed to help provide a bit more drive so it would be worth spending more time experimenting thanks to the adaptability the large slot boxes provide. With the energy delivered, the Quad can point upwind well and punches off ramps effortlessly for inspired aerial antics. But the team had the most fun when using the Quad on a wave face. Preferring to be driven through the front-foot on the bottom turn, the rider can then rock back on their back foot and make the tightest of pockets, the Quad holding its speed and gripping aggressively. On the cut back it transitions from rail to rail instantly and releases its tail easily to complete the turn and keep its speed throughout. For all-round ease and early planing, you should consider the TriWave or Stubby tested last month, but for sublime rail-to-rail turning prowess look no further.
With a distinctly different feel to the other Fanatic wave boards tested last month, the Quad loves to be properly powered and provides a combination of acceleration, speed, grip and response that can’t help but inspire.
Other sails in this test: