At A Glance
And now for something completely different… The Elite from CrazyFly is a project that Jozef Bukovčák has been working on for sometime. With 15 years experience in building some of the worlds best kite boards he wanted to create something a little special.
The original idea for the Elite was spawned over some beers with his American Distributor whilst they were doing some testing. The concept was simple, to create the most advanced kiteboard to date, and with money being no object… At $1,500 the Elite is not cheap, but then neither are the materials used to create it.
Before we get into the details let’s start with the simpler stuff. When you buy an Elite board, you join an “elite” club within the CrazyFly family. The board doesn’t just come on it’s own, it ships in a custom made case that has been CNC’d from foam to perfectly fit the Elite board inside with cut outs for the fins. This offers the ultimate in protection, think of it as a guitar hard-case for your now most treasured possession.
In addition to that the board comes with a specially framed certificate of authenticity with the serial printed on it. Perfect for your desk at work to let everyone know just how elite you are… It also ships with 3 sets of fins, a standard clear set, a special, custom red set and a set of G10 ones too. The straps and pads are custom for this board as well, with the Elite logo proudly emblazoned across them. You also get a special set of silver stickers with various logos and statements that you can put on your lunchbox, or whatever you fancy.
The actual board is very different too, it looks incredible in the flesh, so good you’ll be glad it came in that special box that will keep it looking good! The shape is based around the very popular Raptor Pro model, it’s got a deep double concave and finely tuned rails to offer grip and stability.
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It’s the lightest kiteboard currently on the market, board only it weighs a mere 1,940 grams and fully decked out ready to ride it is still a ridiculously light 2,860 grams. You’ll want to put some sand on it when the wind gets up to say the least! They have achieved this unbelievable weight by using some of the most advanced materials and techniques available at the moment.
Namely HMX-CF which is essentially the stunning patchwork of carbon you see on the board. It is the most advanced carbon fibre technology around at the moment and is a combination of Nano Technology, Carbon Nanotube reinforced resin and T1000G Carbon Fibre to create the worlds most high tensile strength carbon fibre.
It comes supplied as a prepreg, which ensures the perfect ratio of resin is evenly spread and creates the best possible molecular bonding. All of this in laymans terms means the board is incredibly light and very strong…
In order to keep the weight down even further there are no graphical top and bottom sheets, the nature of this new lay up means the board can be left bare and you can actually touch and feel the carbon fibres with your hands. It wasn’t just the carbon that they worked on either. The wood core was specially sourced to be lighter too, although they are keeping very tight lipped about where they get them, each core is custom CNC’d for each board to ensure the most accurate finish.
Yes it is ridiculously expensive, but it is achingly beautiful and it comes with some nice extra touches too. You might be reading this balking at the price, but equally you might be reading this thinking that would look good in the back of your Porsche. These boards are limited in numbers, and they are aimed at a very particular section of the market…
On The Water
So how does it ride? Well if you read our review on the Raptor Pro Ltd last issue you’ll know the shape is one that really works. The board cuts through the water like a hot knife through melted butter; it eats up chop with ease and provides a very very exhilarating ride. It’s insanely fast and ridiculously responsive, but still has an element of ease of use to it. It’s not a board for beginners, but for the seasoned intermediate looking for the ultimate this is most definitely it. If you’re an advanced rider then you’ll love the board too. Explosive pop and easy landings with the deep double concaves really smoothing things out when you are coming in fast and hot.
It’s so light on your feet the swing weight is reduced massively making it easy to pull of tricks involving spins and flips. You can easily correct a bit of wayward momentum with your body as the board is as light as a feather.
Is it worth the money, most likely not for many of you, especially with the Raptor Pro Ltd being considerably less. There is marked improvement in performance with the Elite though, it definitely rides a lot faster and feels much more responsive. It does fill a new and niche section of the market very well however. If you want the Formula 1 of the board world, coupled with a very comprehensive package and the opportunity to be part of a very elite club, then the Elite fits that bill perfectly…
This review was in Issue 45 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit CrazyFly
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By Rou ChaterRou has been kiting since the sports inception and has been working as an editor and tester for magazines since 2004. He started IKSURFMAG with his brother in 2006 and has tested hundreds of different kites and travelled all over the world to kitesurf. He's a walking encyclopedia of all things kite and is just as passionate about the sport today as he was when he first started!