Monday, March 15, 2010

2010 F2 Rodeo 98 review




First off, the board looks MUCH better in person. Well, as everyone that knows me will tell you, my current board of the 2009 Mistral Joker 99 has been my favorite board of all time. It impressed me more than any board in any category the first day I took it for a spin. That is, until today. The winds were extremely gusty, side offshore and choppy as hell. 4.2 was the call, and thanks to my buddy Kurt, a brand spankin new 2010 F2 Rodeo Air in the 98 ltr flavor was there for our enjoyment. Just to "test the waters" I took out the 4.2 with my Joker 99 first. I knew this board well and wanted to get a real idea of the conditions for a fair comparison. And conditions were crappy to say the least. about 40 knots in the gusts and 15 knots in the lulls. So on to my first impressions already.

As I schlogged off the beach in the wind shadow, I noticed it was very stable off a plane. As the first little puff came through, I popped right up onto a plane. It planed up just as early as the Joker, which is saying a lot. As I got up to speed the chop coming straight at me and the Rodeo was bouncing around a bit but considering what mother nature was throwing my way, it behaved very nicely. It definitely rode a little bigger than the Joker, and was very similar in feel to the Fanatic Skate. As I set up for a funnel, I noticed the board was a bit more stable than the Joker I was used to. After I was switch stance it also held it's speed up easier also. This thing is a really great board for the switch stance moves. It's got a nice flat deck, so you can really change up your stance easy. When it came time to pop, it was like the rodeo was pre-programmed to pop around all the moves. In this funnel, which was the first trick of the day on the board, it just popped right up. If I wanted the air funnel, I would have had it easy. You can just pop it and throw it around wherever you want it. It's so compact and well balanced in the air, rotating it is a no-brainer. just look where you want it to go and it's already there. On the way back in I was now heading straight off the backs of the chop. I really wanted to see how the Rodeo would handle a shaka, so I lined up the back of a 6 inch peice of chop and let loose. It popped higher than my Joker would with similar wind and chop. In the air, again, it just went where I wanted it. As he nose touched down there wasn't even a hint of stickiness that there used to be with the previous model, the Chilli. The Rodeo instead just spun around to complete the shaka just like I was used to with the Joker. I continued in and went for a flaka, which became an air flaka. the Rodeo handled it without a hitch. As I got closer to shore the wind was lightening up and I began to fall off a plane so I went for a spock 540 to head back out. Again the board popped with minimal effort and as the tail touched down it planed backwards sooooo easily and then slid into the spock needing very little input from me. Just pop and spin seemed to be what this board wants to do.

So all in all I spent about 1/2 hour on the board landing all sorts of tricks very easily in the very gusty conditions. This board would be great not only for the most advanced of freestylers out there, but also guys just getting into it. It's got everything you'd want in one board. Stability and a flat deck for the old school moves. Easy pop and sliding for when you want to learn your vulcans and spocks. Then when you're ready for Ponches, Shakas, Air Funnels and all the other New School radical tricks, the Rodeo will deliver on everything. If you're looking for a new freestyle board, the Rodeo should definitely be at the top of the list. Right now, it's on the top of mine.

16 comments:

  1. Stoked to hear Kurt finally shared. I'm just going to wait for whatever board comes in first.

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  2. I just put my order in for the Rodeo 98. this year has been crazy for boards. I had my pick this year from virtually every top brand out there, and the Rodeo is what I'm getting. Ocean Air just put an oder for mine and couple others, so grab one before they're gone!

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  3. So wait, will you be riding the Jp Freestyle Pro 98 or Rodeo 98?

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  4. hmmmmm..........good question. Your guess is as good as mine at this point. I'm going to try the JPs in hatteras in a about a week. I'm taking whatever is the best board. I'm narrowing it down from Fanatic, JP, F2 and Mistral. So far I've tried the Skate in Bonaire, the Rodeo here last week, and the 2009 Mistral (obviously). So far the Rodeo is holding the lead and my 2009 Joker is in second, but we'll see what the JPs can offer up. Either way, I'll have an 89 ltr JP waiting for me in Hatteras that I'll be taking home. I'm really looking forward to having a freestyle board that's sweet spot is a 4.2 Anyway, I'll have the review of the JP up when I give that board a try.

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  5. Hi Mike,
    I had a brilliant time down in Hatteras. I was great sailing with you and the rest of the gang. Would love to do that again. You looked like you were having a blast on the Rodeo, so i'm not surprised to see your review. Sorry we didn't join you guys on the last night. I was wiped (as everyone was I think). Thanks again for your and Chris's hospitality hopefully we'll see you guys on the Cape at some point. All the best. Dave

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  6. It was great to have you Dave. I'll let you know the next time we head to Hatteras.

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  7. Hi Mike ,
    I just discover your website. Congratulations !
    Can you just give me the exact weight of the F2 Rodéo 98 ?
    Paul Hilfiger / FRA 517 / french Ripper from La Rochelle

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  8. Hi Paul,

    I don't know the exact weight. Every board that comes out of the mold has a slightly different weight due to the amount of resin and glues used. It's really light, right on par with the JP Pro Edition, and Fanatic Team edition boards. I would say about 13.5 lbs. I was just out on it today, with its light weight and volume distribution it just rotates all the moves soooooo fast and pops really high really easy.

    Mike

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  9. I'll be bringing the 2011 Rodeo to Bonaire (assuming it gets here in time). Should be here in November though. My 2011 sails are coming this week!!

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  10. Looking forward to your impressions of the 2011 rodeo. Maybe a video as well? :-).
    Im thinking of trying out the new NS Dukes and a F2 Rodeo.


    Greetings from norway.

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  11. And a big hello to Norway! From what I've heard, the 2011 rodeo is pretty much the same as the 2010. I believe the biggest change is that they moved the fin forward a hair for better grip in the caving moves like shaka, so it should be a little easier for people that don't have them wired yet. Not sure if the 2011 Rodeo I ordered over the summer will show up or not. I've switched to Fanatic as the 2011 Skate seems to be a nice mix between everything i liked in the Rodeo and the JP freestyle. If the Rodeo does show up, I'll be sure to give it a good thrashing and report.

    For the sails, keep the Ices in mind too. If you're a lighter sailer you may prefer the Ices over the dukes as they react a little quicker in the maneuvers. I use a 5.9 Duke then 5.3 and down Ices. They're both great sails and I know really good freestyles that use the Dukes down to 5.0. The ones that won't work for freestyle are the Egos but you won't go wrong with a Duke or ice.

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  12. Thanks so much for the reply. I will be trying to escape the cold weather over here and fly down to fuerteventure this december. I definitely
    try out the Ice then. And i know they will be having the 2011 boards from F2, Starboard and fanatic!

    Hang loose :D

    Bjoernar

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  13. Sounds like a plan. You're lucky to be able to try all those boards in one spot.

    Happy sailing,

    Mike

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  14. Hi, well be sensible, well-all described

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  15. Ah good old cialis. I was wondering when you'd invade our blog. When you have a rodeo, you don't need any other performance enhancing pills.

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