Ezzy Wave Panther 2
PRICE: £415-£488 (at new 17.5% UK VAT rate)
AVAILABILITY: Jan 4th (but ordering now will save paying the increased VAT rate)
The Ezzy Wave Panther was first released in Sep 2008 and since then has built a solid reputation for itself, which culminated in a glowing report within our recent 2010 Wave sail test. After 15 months of duty, David Ezzy has decided it is time to refresh the Panther and we therefore see the launch of the new Ezzy Wave Panther 2 this month!
We asked David some questions about it...
BS. Please describe the main differences that riders will notice between the Panther and Panther 2 on the water.
DE. Overall, the feeling of the Panther 2 is very similar to last year's Panther. The Panther 2 feels a bit lighter and has a smoother ride. This makes the Panther 2 easier to sail in critical situations, such as when a big gust hits, or in choppy seas.
BS. Has the Tri-Lite (which is lighter and slightly stretchier) made an apparent difference to the feel of the sail?
DE. Yes. In addition to being lighter, the Tri-Lite absorbs shocks travelling through the sail, thereby making the sail feel smoother and less jerky.
BS. Is it difficult to make a sail that appeals to both recreational riders and pro riders (such as your son Graham) or do they look for the same virtues in a sail?
DE. All sails are governed by the same laws of aerodynamics. It doesn't matter if it is a race sail, or a wave sail, what works in one has to work in the other. All sailors, whether they are recreational or top pro's require the same characteristics in their wave sails. Control, power, manoeuvrability and strength.
BS. The original Panther did extremely well in our recent Boardseeker wave sail test. Do you ever find it hard to make an improvement on an existing product and get pressured into making a change for changes sake?
DE. I never make changes just for the sake of change. Every panel and component that is put in a sail must serve a purpose or function — or else it shouldn’t be there. Sails shouldn’t change every year for the sake of change - If something truly works, then it should remain a part of the sail design going forward in time. I feel sorry for some of the other designers that get pressured by the marketing guys to always come up with something new and different, without necessarily improving the sail. I'm lucky that I don't have to deal with this, since I own the company.
BS. Why is it that Ezzy sails will set on any mast, yet other brands all claim that you need the manufacturers recommended mast for best performance?
DE. I guess most want to sell you their mast too. I don't care what mast people use. I want to sell sails and it is my responsibility to design sails that are not too mast specific. The only reason that I sell masts is, 11 years ago when we started selling the skinny, there weren't many skinnys being sold around the world, and I thought skinnys were the way to go.
BS. What qualities do you believe will set the Panther 2 apart from other wave sails on the market?
DE. The Panther has a defined profile built into the panels that make it very stable. The body panels consist of four unique materials that are designed specifically for the loads associated with different areas of the sail. Technora up the leech to resist stretch, the Tri-Lite in the centre panel to save weight, the Spectra X ply up the luff and the boom area for visibility and strength and the high density Spectra X in the foot and tack to resist punctures. Another thing that sets us apart is that we rig every sail we produce. This allows us to tension the battens and go over our work.
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