Just as with Hornet’s iSUP we reviewed the brand’s new three piece SUP paddle was eagerly anticipated. Upon arrival it’s moderately sized camo fibreglass blade, three piece carbon shaft and ergonomic handle sure look up for the task ahead.
Feeling light in the hands the shaft is pleasant to grip and even with only a single push pin securing mechanism, located at the bottom of the paddle, it feels solid through each stroke. The head adjustment is a push lock system and is also rock steady – there was no ‘play’ during sweeps.
The Hornet’s power face is quite flat with only a subtle dihedral running through the first two thirds of the blade. With this in mind it’s key to bury the Hornet fully to maximise propulsion. There isn’t any flutter as long as SUPers submerse 100% and it delivers quite a bit of oomph. Shaft flex is moderate to stiff, which again, leads to a powerful stroke. We were keen to see how this affected us during lengthy sessions, as some stiffer paddles will fatigue joints and muscles. The Hornet, we’re happy to report, didn’t seem to give us any issues. It should be said that setting the extension to the correct height will help in this instance.
In terms of environment the Hornet three piece works fine on flat water but does come into its own when powering up SUP surf sleds. From standing starts riders will get their board up and running quick smart. At the same time it remains a flicky paddle for rail to rail transitions during turns.
Hornet’s three piece adjustable paddle is a reliable piece of kit that SUPers could use as their primary form of propulsion or back up option. Travelling stand ups will find it worthy of kit bag inclusion – especially if surf destinations are on the itinerary. Powerful from the word go it rewards refined stroke types although there’s no reason why newbies couldn’t use it to develop and progress. The ergonomic handle fits comfortably into the palm of user’s hands and not once did the connections between sections show any signs of wobble. For a new to UK SUP paddle market the Hornet three piece adjustable really delivers.
Price: 175 Euros