GOYA CUSTOM 86L 2017 TEST REVIEW
Goya’s Custom range of quad ‘surfwave’ boards was completely redefined last year and remains current for 2017. The 86 is the middle sibling in a large seven board line-up and as with the 96 tested last year, has a unique and eye-catching (some would say aggressive) appearance. The rails in the tail are incredibly sharp, yet tuck early in the board’s mid-section before becoming rounded in the nose. The shoulders of the Custom 86 are wide and low, tapering smoothly to a narrow pulled in tail and acute swallowtail. But one of the most distinguishing features is realised when you turn the board over. The Custom boasts a mono-concave throughout its length, only interrupted with the inclusion of a slight wash of double concave to exact a long rocker flat through the middle of the board. Finished with quality MFC fittings and the brand’s excellent Varidens deckpads, it’s a bold statement of a design and certainly looks like it means business…
“The Custom will blow you away with speed, while its Half Moon tail allows for unparalleled turns packed with torque. A stance just 6 inches from the tail allows you to rule all that power. Over the years we have seen everybody getting more and more into bigger board sizes. This new line is our response to the very demand we have pioneered. Standing as close to the tail creates a geometry that allows you to ride the Custom like a surfboard. Shorter outlines and straighter stance rails define the dynamic of these sticks. Concaves run throughout the bottom in geometries allowing you to accelerate toward the pocket with no resistance.”
Feeling stable and balanced at idle, the Custom responds well as soon as power is delivered, and accelerates positively. It has a lively yet controlled nature, the deckpads and straps providing excellent connection as the Custom winds up to an impressive speed. With a secure and planted style, the rails seem to stabilise the ride over confused seas and provide instant response to changes in foot pressure instead of imparting a sharp, jaw-clenching clatter often associated with mono-concaves. Comfortably powered, it simply motors upwind, capable of pointing several degrees higher than some others in the group. On the wave the Custom provides a masterclass in how to bottom turn. It has so much grip and drive through its rails that it projects the board back up the face so fast it initially took us by surprise. In fact, there is so much traction that we almost had to concede there was too much for us mere mortals, taking real precision and concentration to redirect on the top turn. Fine if your timing is spot on … or if your name happens to be Brawzinho. Those with an aggressive gouging style will be left salivating, lapping up every ounce of purchase the tail and fins can muster. For everyone else, we found the Custom worked beautifully as a twinzer (we used a couple of 15cm fins), easily forgoing a slight drop in drive and upwind capacity for a looser feel on the wave, making it easier to punch off the white-water or step the tail out to finish the turn off.
The Custom is a fast, exciting no-compromise grippy wave machine at the very forefront of pushing new school riding styles … yet has the manners, ease and tuning capacity to be accessible to most.
Other sails in this test: