Our rider, Max Rinaldi, this time devoted himself to the test of a freestyle sail, the Simmer ACE 2018. We share with you his evaluations.
Windsurfing, sails test: the Simmer ACE 5.2 2018 (by Max Rinaldi)
This time, we talk about the Ace, the freestyle sail from Simmer, which is proposed in 4 sizes: from 4.0 to 5.2.
The sail that I had available for the test is the largest. You rig it with a 4 meters mast and 26 cm of extension, while the boom size required is only 164 cm.
It is in its second year of production, and, for 2018, it is presented only in the white-black-orange color, which, in my opinion, is very beautiful.
I have to admit that I have never used a freestyle sail, and initially I did not understand how it could remain so flat in the upper part, so I kept sheeting the downhaul to make it have at least a little loosen leech. But I prejudiced its performance.
The sail was not very reactive, nervous and not very powerful ... I could not wait to give it back to the Waterwind staff!
Some talks on the beach with a friend, and a couple of "little technical" tests, were enough to decide to give it an attempt respecting exactly the measures indicated by the brand.
With gusty wind of 16/18 knots, the first rides were enough to make me totally change my mind on this sail, and, at the end of the day, the other guys at sea also realized that I got immediately gliding and I was running the maneuvers in a fluid and precise way, as if I had a smaller sail. I remind you that I weigh 72 kgs, and use a 100lt freestyle board.
I used it again in Andora (that is, a Ligurian sea spot) after a week in similar conditions, and I had confirmation of its qualities, so that, at the end of the test, I decided to keep it!
Impressions in the water: this Ace is really very reactive, and even with light wind, some pumping is enough to make the board start planing. The panel next to the mast sleeve, in dacron, allows the sail to "swell" quickly, without compromising its stability ... Once gliding, it easily overcomes the wind holes and reacts immediately to stance changes.
In maneuver, it behaves very well, it is very light, and, thanks to the short boom and the rather high and straight base cut, it is perfect in the passages under the sail and in the tricks.
It always remains extremely neutral, it does not "pull" the rider, and allows him/her to perform maneuvers with a simplicity (for me) unthinkable for a 5.2 ...
Basically, I can not find fault with this Simmer: it has the handling of a 4.7, and "the power" of a 5.8.
It is light, but the construction looks robust and very well finished. He excels in his category, but it also made me have fun on a couple of (small) waves. So, I can also recommend it to those who do not practice mainly freestyle, or are approaching this discipline by taking the first steps ...