At A Glance
Canadian kitesurfing players Ocean Rodeo bring their all-around favourite ‘The Prodigy’ back for round 6. A kite designed to be a genuine all-rounder, the Prodigy features an incredibly lightweight design for increased low-end use. Three struts and only essential reinforcements in critical areas keep the weight down low for better low-end performance and ease of use while travelling.
There is a simple bridle system on the Prodigy which is short with 2 pulleys for extra motion through the turn. New knots and larks heads have been added to the front and rear pigtails which encourages the kite to climb faster out of loops and stabilise the leading edge.
Ocean Rodeo have long been known for quality, and we are pleased to see the kites now made with high-grade Teijin D2 ripstop and Dimension Polyant’s K-PE Dacron. These materials coupled with 3 stage buck stitching, load distribution panels and Armourtex Kevlar bumper pads make for a pretty solid piece of kit.
Sizes: 5, 7, 8, 9.5, 12 meters
We used The Prodigy with the well thought out Pilot Bar. Ocean Rodeo also have the Shift Bar which uses a bar end knob to alter the trim.
The Ocean Rodeo Pilot control bar comes stacked with interesting features. The bar is an above the bar trim, below the bar swivel ensuring you've got what you need where you need it.
The bar features a bungee depower trim line, which ensures there's no chance of getting your trim caught around the outside lines. The bars grip and appearance is very clean and super simple. Simplicity works! The grip is super soft and comfortable, and the moulded bar ends are perfect in case you slip while going for that first unhooked move. The centre line depower travel is considerable which enables a great range of depower on the fly when in trickier conditions.
The Pilot bar comes with a tough chicken loop; this enables a quick direct hook up with the harness. The integrated below the bar swivel works effortlessly unpinning those centre lines. Ocean Rodeo’s quick release system is incredibly tidy and easy to reassemble, if there’s ever a need to release and you want to get going again, it’s a breeze!
Variable line lengths on the bar make every session even more customisable. Longer lines dish out a slower feel with more boost and float. The shorter line configurations are great for shredding the waves!
“The Prodigy 6 is a testament of what average riders want and need.”
In The Air
The Prodigy has long been enjoyed for its relaxed flying style and power on demand in even super light winds. Version 6 builds on this, and we found more power per size and an even more pleasant flying experience.
The kite is simple to set up with an excellent bag supplied. A one-pump system ensures a fast transition into the water where instantly you will feel ready for the session.
The feedback through the bar is progressive along the centre line, with a prominent sweet spot in the middle, which makes those early jumps a breeze as the kite almost tells you what to do.
There is a good amount of play within the depower on the bar for when that wind increases, and in fact, we did find having an inch of trim applied at all times did make the kite feel slightly lighter and also track upwind slightly better. The Prodigy is a very powerful kite, and at times you could think you are on a size bigger than you actually are! However, you are able to considerably reduce this when needed, and some hard edging can take the kite right to the very edge of the window in any large gusts.
The Prodigy comes into its own for jumping, with big floaty boosts made easy and some old school tricks begging to be had. Landings again are oh so soft, and in fact, the float is so prominent you stay in the air slightly longer than anticipated! We enjoyed the forgiving nature of the kite, which even for those just starting out enables mistakes to be made with timings without drastic consequence.
The Prodigy is not a freestyle kite, but as with most kites in this day and age, it will still perform for the odd trick if that is not your main aim within kitesurfing.
There is a quick turn on the Prodigy, and you are able to pull that bar right in to perform more of a pivotal turn, which becomes great fun for playing about in any waves or big lumps in chop. The kite cruises well downwind and will pull you out of any wave by simply re-engaging the back lines.
Of course, crashes will always appear, and we loved how simple the Prodigy was to hold onto one backline which bought the kite round to be re-launched at the edge of the window. In big waves, the kite moved quick enough to get us out the way between sets.
Designed, tested and perfected in the real world conditions of Canada, the Prodigy 6 is a testament of what average riders want and need. The kite pulls like a train, floats like a feather and turns on a sixpence. A cracking combination for an all-rounder.
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This review was in Issue 73 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit Ocean Rodeo