GOYA NEXUS PRO 5.9M TEST REVIEW
In the words of sail designer Jason Diffin, the Nexus is “pure freeride”, evolving through its sizes to offer minimal fuss and maximum enjoyment. Powerful yet stable, easy to handle yet offering excellent speed and return, it has been refined for 2018 to increase its top end control. Capable of being used on both SDMs and RDMs, it was rigged and tested here on a Goya RDM99, setting with shape in its lower panels at rest, the battens retaining rotation with the mast whilst the leech is loose, particularly in the two upper panels. There is plenty of luff curve, most noticeably in the head of the sail (due to the different bend characteristics of the mast’s two halves), leading to some exceptional skin tension through the sail’s panels. The quality of the materials used in the Nexus is also worthy of comment, with a 7mil monofilm main window and 5mil upper window, all framed by colour coded x-ply and reinforced by the brand’s famed ‘carbon stretch control’ fibres that radiate from the tack. The Nexus sets beautifully and certainly looks the part … but will its performance be as flawless?
“The Nexus design goal was to improve the high wind control and range of the sail, without losing any of the low end drive the sail is so well loved for. This has been achieved by small refinements in the outline, slightly shorter luffs combined with new seam shape cuts providing a cleaner leech edge release which improves high wind control to be superbly stable. The foot of the sail utilizes our new and more damage resistant film that comes in the sail colour. New combination nylon/composite leech mini battens stabilize the leech edge making the sail quieter in the hands.”
With its significant skin tension, the Nexus feels crisp and poised in the hands, and translates any gust smoothly and efficiently into power, transferring it to the board instantly. It feels incredibly positive in the hands and like the Banzai, has a hybrid luff panel, providing just enough breathability and give in the sail’s belly to make the power manageable. Actively accelerating in every gust, it is incredibly efficient in marginal winds, and holds its form beautifully even in lulls, ploughing through them when others would drop off the plane. As the wind increases, there is certainly some tuning range available, pulling on more downhaul to increase the amount of looseness and twist down the sail’s trailing edge and fine-tuning the extent of the power delivery on the outhaul. The delivery is still precise – you can really pinpoint where the drive is coming from, and yet by managing it, you can significantly extend the range available. Long in the boom, the Nexus, is a real gem to partner with a fast freeride hull and pin down into a locked-in, compact stance and giving the sense that it is hunting for the extra power of the next gust. Providing the punch and efficiency to cover distance easily, it can point upwind incredibly well, whilst being equally potent off the wind. In transitions, the Nexus’ doesn’t go neutral, yet has the balance and precision to make it stable mid-transition and easy to reposition. It is almost like a solid wing as it is eased out, rotating smoothly before having just enough give and progression in its panels when sheeted in on the new tack.
One of the more direct feeling sails in the group, the Nexus has the power range and crisp handling to make it an ideal choice for those that like to really sense they are involved whilst sailing.
Other sails in this test: