Words: Ben Pye
Pics: Steve Pye
Starboard SUP UK & Ireland sponsored young gun Ben Pye recently got his mitts of the brand’s 2016 Astro Racer inflatable. He got in touch asking if readers would like to hear his thoughts about the big S’s brand new iSUP. SUPM were only to pleased to hear what Ben had to say.
Words cannot explain the versatility of the 2016 Starboard Astro Racer. The new carbon rails, and dual stringer system, make it a super fast iSUP – possibly the fastest inflatable race board in the world. Whatever conditions, be that cruising, upwind or downwind, this board excels.
I recently took this board on a trip to Tenerife with me, and it was the best! I used it in all conditions. I surfed it, did some awesome downwinder’s, and did plenty of upwind race training on it. It paddles like a hard board, and I was even stopped on the beach and asked if it was a hard board. Everyone loved it, some beginners, and even more experienced paddlers.
This is one of the few race boards out there which everyone can enjoy. Being 28″ inches wide, it is stable but also narrow enough for more experienced paddlers to easily race and do well on.
The Starboard Astro Racer comes in three sizes this year, 12.6ft x 26″ for those who are really looking at serious racing, 12.6ft x 28″, for those looking to get into racing, or a more stable board for racers, and 14ft x 28″ for heavier paddlers, or a board for those wanting that extra glide.
This year, Starboard have introduced new rail edge technology into the Astro Racer, giving it increased speed and glide. Starboard have also added new carbon rail technology making it stiffer and faster than ever before. The board is still easily folded down with the carbon rails and rail edge technologies.
Another thing which is drastically improved on this board is the deck pad. The deck pad runs throughout the board from middle to back, with an incredible tail pad for fast, fluid buoy turns.
So make sure you try this board out, and I’ll see you on the water!