PLANCHEMAG SPECIAL TESTS 2017 / GS-R 7.8 2017
The new GSR has a new faceplate, with battens made of high modulus carbon fibre giving a more consistent leech twist between the top and bottom. It is fitted with three clew eyelets and comes in 5 new sizes: 7.8/8.2/8.6/9.2/ 9.6m².
ON THE WATER: Very easy to rig, the new GS-R has a little more power in the takeoff and to sustain planing, thanks to a more rigid leech. This gives you a bigger recoil when pumping (which is more efficient) and more reliable control whether you need to change position in the pack, cope with a refusal or relaunch when gybing. This more linear behaviour, with a head that moves around less, enhances the overall performance when surfing down the line. It certainly requires a little more effort than before, but you will be rewarded with an overall improvement in performance, compared to its competitors in this group. You don't have the lightning acceleration of the best models when you enter a squally zone, but overall its very competitive, especially on long distance sessions where you really want high performance without too much effort, nothing too physically demanding to handle. It snaps at the heels of the best top models with a top speed sailing crosswind or windward, but its just not quite as good as the best at repositioning. It keeps the board flat in the chop and strong winds, without being the most stable profile when sailing overpowered. Gybing is great fun, for a racing sail, thanks to good cam rotation and a more fluid relaunch and profile rotation than before.
SUMMARY: While not reaching the explosive level of some rivals, the new Gun racing sails seem more docile, better behaved and more flexible thanks to their new leech shape, which results in a better connection between the top and bottom of the profile. Its ability to handle a wide range of wind speeds is improving, along with its linearity in behaviour and performance. One of the most user-friendly racing sails on the market.
+: Bargain price, wind range, overall good performance, easy to tame in this group, rigging, gybing.
- : Lacks a little explosive bang in the relaunch and acceleration in squally winds in slalom.