GA SAILS CROSS 6.0M 2017 TEST REVIEW
The Cross remains GA Sail’s crossover sail for 2017, yet like their wave sails – the Manic and IQ, tried earlier in our 2017 test programme, the Cross now sets on a constant curve mast. It also has a new outline, with a significant step in the leech profile at the main batten just above the boom, improving the effectiveness of the brand’s Posi-Leech concept. There is more shape high up in the sail, for improved bottom end performance, whilst the battens themselves are said to have been lowered in the sail’s layout, which, combined with a lower foot shape, provides more balance and response. Rigged on a 430cm RDM, the Cross sets with a good amount of luff curve, the leech falling away progressively along its length, whilst both lower battens retain plenty of rotation around the mast.
“I like a sail that can easily get onto a plane and remain stable. The Cross has the perfect balance to get me going and keep me powered up and in control. I can get this baby moving in light wind and hang on tight when it starts blasting!” – Matt Pritchard.
Balanced in the hands at rest, as the pressure builds, the Dacron luff panel enables the Cross to adopt a much deeper profile, generating plenty of power through the backhand. It seems to have more bottom end potential than we remember of its predecessor, the useable feedback coupled with the sail’s ability to be pumped, making it a match for any other sail in this group. Accelerating efficiently, the short boom length helps to make it feel compact and manageable once going. Its centre of effort is relatively low and forwards, pinning the board down and encouraging the sailor to adopt a more locked in stance. As the wind increases and the conditions become more severe, this is a real plus to the Cross’s character, controlling the board whilst the movement in the luff panel helps the sail to move around the sailor without pulling their stance out of shape. It is a lot of fun to use in a high wind blasting role, its efficiency and positive feedback providing great advantage over your peers. It can be taken confidently into any environment, from flat-water to coastal chop and waves, and seems to keep accelerating with every gust, remaining stable and providing the impetus to fly a board on its fin. In transition, the Cross has the manners to be able to be repositioned easily, its shorter boom length once again coming into play. And whilst perhaps not as crisp in rotation or instantaneous in drive as some manoeuvre-biased sails in this group, the Cross has the balance and dependable nature to even make the most of less than ideal wave riding conditions.
With a low, forward centre of effort and plenty of breathability in the draft, the Cross offers a wonderfully efficient blasting nature across an impressive wind range … with the extra bonus of positive dependable handling.
Other sails in this test: