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For a long time, I have wanted to try the Ga Sails Manic, a 4 batten hardcore wave sail, made famous by the well-known French windsurfing champion Thomas Traversa. I had the opportunity to test it properly, and in this article I will tell you about my impressions.


Windsurfing, sail test: Ga Sails Manic 2022


Construction and technical data


The size tested is the 4.2. To have maximum visibility on the wave, through the window, I chose the non-textured version (i.e., I didn't opt for the so-called HD).

The technical data of the sail are shown below. The sail has 4 battens in all sizes. If the choice is right on the larger sizes needs to be evaluated (profile sufficiently stable?). From the 4.0 and below, the sail is equipped with a vario - top.




We tested the 4.2, as mentioned, rigging it with an Ezzy Hookipa RDM 370 mast, which was found to be compatible with the sail curve.

The construction of the sail appears reasonably robust, although not comparable to that of some brands that excel in this respect. The sail is rather light in weight. It is characterized by a quite wide monofilm window, and for the rest by 1.75 mil 2-Ply in the center and 2.5 mil in the leech, a solution that provides a perfect combination of lightness and durability.

The sail is equipped with two clew rings, connected to two radial carbon strips, for adjustment according to the intensity of the wind, like models from other brands. In addition to the arrangement of the radial panels, these strips reinforce the sail along the load lines, reducing the stretch of the material, and allowing the sail to maintain its shape longer when hit by gusts.

I was a little perplexed by the tip in the sail head (rather than the cap of the Ezzy or the webbing of the Goya) into which the end of the mast must fit, but its conical shape is such that it inserts easily and automatically into the mast when rigging the sail, and it doesn't get stuck in the sand (an aspect I was afraid of).


Windsurf Ga Sails Manic 001

Windsurf Ga Sails Manic 003 



The brand claims:

The Manic is cut for universal wave sailing performance at any spot and in all conditions. Its inimitable combination of controllability, power and handling will fascinate you both when blasting down the line in perfect side-off conditions and during onshore jumping sessions. For 2022 we worked on the panel layout and incorporated two continuous luff panels, which ensure a stronger and more efficient load distribution. The Manic’s outline was slightly revised to enhance stability and reduce back hand pressure. Planing performance and handling are guaranteed throughout the whole spectrum with the bigger sizes providing more power in light winds and the small sizes being easy to control in hardcore conditions.




Impressions in the water


I can say in a few words, that the Ga Sails Manic is a fantastic sail, which really surprised me!

I used the sail for the first time in Bump and Jump/Wave conditions with small waves (about 1 meter) in Andora, Liguria (Italy), but with excellent quality wind (well spreaded and constant). The wind direction on the wave was side-on. I immediately liked the sail very much. The aspect that I liked most was the strong, but not brutal, push of the wing which provides a very immediate feeling. If you want to accelerate, and you close the sail, the Manic immediately guarantees the power necessary to catch a wave, or to take off a jump, but it never causes you to be out of control.

The second time I tried the sail was in bump and jump conditions, at Pra de la Fam (Lake Garda); I was slightly overpowered. I played a lot with the clew, fixing the outhaul, in the different parts of the session, to the upper ring, or to the lower one. The sail proved to manage gusts very well, never feeling too nervous in the hands. It showed that it can face a wide range of wind intensities.


Windsurf Ga Sails Manic 005

Windsurf Ga Sails Manic 006




In both sessions, I liked the "lightness" and easy handling of the sail when maneuvering, and especially in the jibe, during which it easily assists the rider during all phases.

The sail also gave me an impression of reasonable robustness, with a good compromise between light weight and quantity/quality of the materials used. It is clear, however, that this aspect can only be fully assessed in the medium term experience.

However, I did the definitive test using the sail in important waveriding conditions..... and I waited for serious sessions before closing this test.

I took the sail with me to South Africa, and I used it in Elands Bay, with side wind, and a couple of meters of wave good for jumping and nice for waveriding; then, when returned to Europe, I tested it for two days in a row in the French spot of the Coudouliere, with waves varying from 1.5 to 3 metres, and with onshore and side-on wind, sometimes a little unsteady (and the power of the Manic saved me from some unpleasant situations).

I felt perfectly comfortable with the Manic even in these conditions. I enjoyed the lightness of it in my hands while surfing at Elands Bay, where I also exploited its power to easily overcome the breakers of over 1.5 meters, that I met on the way out, and also to do some nice jumps. At Coudouliere, the power of the sail was invaluable for riding upwind and offhore with significant waves in the middle of the bay (more than 3 metres), even with onshore unstable winds. The power of the sail also turned out very precious to ride back to the lip clew forward after the bottom turn. At the Coudouliere, the sail also proved to resist well to some medium-sized wipe outs, and confirmed that it manages over-powering very well.

The comparison with the other sails that I use frequently is inevitable. The Manic offers comparable power to the Goya Banzai, but without causing sudden accelerations like this sail; it is more powerful than the Goya Guru, but is equally easy to handle (perhaps even more, to be true). The propulsive thrust is more direct and less progressive than the Ezzy Wave or the Elite.

In short, Ga Sails Manic is passed with full marks. Try it to believe me.

Ciao. Fabio


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In the video below, shot in South Africa, you can also see me in action at Elands Bay with Ga Sails Manic.



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