GA SAILS SAVAGE 7.2M 2016 TEST REVIEW
Looking at the dimensions, the Savage design remains unchanged for 2016, apart from a colour scheme and graphic update. Untested last year, it would be interesting to see how it matched up against the others, being one of only two sails on test here that is recommended for use on a 430cm mast, and possessing both the shortest luff and one of the smallest boom lengths in the group. Rigged on a 75% SDM mast, it was relatively easy to downhaul and sets with lots of twist and looseness in the leech all the way to the clew. The three lower battens retain rotation around the mast, particularly the two either side of the boom, and the leading edge exhibits lots of luff curve, one of the most pronounced in the group.
“I would happily take the Savage when I am practicing for a PWA race. My speed is competitive, and I actually feel a benefit of having a lighter rig and no cams in the gybes. A normal level guy might find that their results on the Savage are better than on a cammed sail.” Cedric Bordes.
With plenty of shape locked forward in the draft at rest, the Savage feels small, light and compact in the hands, as if poised and ready to act. When a gust hits, the sail responds immediately, accelerating in a heartbeat and feeling incredibly focused and precise. The centre of effort is actually quite high in the draft, yet remains locked right into the leading edge of the foil so that it never creates a control issue. It is an inspiring sail to use as the speed comes effortlessly; even in an upright relaxed stance, you’re motoring along at a competitive rate when comparing your speed to your peers. Taking the Savage into challenging waters, we anticipated the sail’s loaded tension and precise nature to become an issue, but nothing of the sort. There is just enough movement in the leading edge (be it play in the luff tube or narrow Dacron luff panel) combined with the softer mast that seems to temper and cushion the sail’s character, helping to keep it locked. Even in severe winds and partnered with a direct feeling board, the Savage remains manageable, twisting and opening to keep the focus of the sail driving forward, whilst providing useable backhand feedback. The only chink in the Savage’s armour was noticed during prolonged lulls when the shorter boom length and such forward focused drive means the sail doesn’t seem to squirt the board through as well as others in the group. But keep the Savage powered and its instant acceleration and effortless speed will embolden you to drag-race your friends, bolstered by the light handling advantage and response you’ll have in the corners.
With light, compact handling and forward focused power, the Savage has a wonderfully precise delivery that translates into instant acceleration and effortless speed.
Other sails in this test: