Tested Neilpryde Fly 5m 2023 wing
Test conditions: We tested the wing in January in Fuerteventura, 20gr, nice water and both good bumps, stretches of flat water and waves of 4m+!!
Spots: Fuerteventura Rocky Point and Majanicho from bumpy to big waves underpowered to overpowered
Test duration 4 days.
Neilpryde is a sail and windsurfing brand and in windsurfing, Pryde has won more world championships than all other brands combined. It is du also known as state of the art performance.
Pryde made a foils and subsidiary JP boards, but this is Neilpryde's first wing.
The wing has a reasonable dihydral, medium strut thickness with thinner wingtips, at the front there is good tension on the canopy, at the trailing edge (back) there is no tension and a loose leech has been deliberately made, stabilised with 3 mini bats per side
The Fly has 2 Sup valves and no one pump system. On the website, all the details are neatly laid out but among other things, an anti bladder twist system e the handles stand out positively. The grips are very similar to those of the Takuma RS, but feel a bit more solid and grippy. The front/surf handle is stiff and well-padded with plenty of room for big hands here too.
No special cloth has been used for the Fly like Allula, Apex, Hookipa N-weave etc, but the dacron does feature nice print which gives a fancy look.
All in all, a very nicely finished product.
On the water:The first thing you notice is that the front handle makes the Fly very easy to walk to the water, not unimportant when you have to go over rocks to go in.It is very calm and stable in the hand. When starting, the Fly has a lot of upwind pressure and the pressure point is far forward, it literally pulls you up, which is a real advantage when starting with sinker boards 56l for a 95+kg rider. The Fly responds well to pumping. Once up the foil the Fly keeps naturally pulling 45degree upwards, unlike some flat wings that like to pull more horizontally.The only wing we know with the pressure point even further forward are the Smiks. When sailing straight ahead, the handling is particularly good and the wind range is downright large. In high winds, the upward pull works against it a bit and can make the wing a bit trickier, but then there were also a good 25 knots.I sail strapless, so if I jump then something goes very wrong, but I can imagine jumpers getting very happy with the upward pull and big handles with plenty of space for weird moves.
Wave riding/transitions: In the surf at the Surfhandle, the Fly is very neutral, more neutral than you would expect from a wing with Dihydral, as they more often tend to get a bit more turbulent, but the Fly does sits very close to my Cabrinha Mantis V2 . You can also grab the Fly by the front lever on the strut, there it is easy to grab and very well controlled.We've had a few days with onshore wind where the DW was riding waves and the front handle makes it very easy to control the wing and move it from one hand to the other, something I don't often do with other wings. When jibbing, it's the same: the front handle just makes turning and switching hands a lot easier.
By: Jeroen van Gessel