Mar 13, 2014
SBC Awards—Test Favourite: Advanced Freestyle
Size tested: 12m Suggested retail: $1449.00 (12m—kite only)
Sizes available: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12m (also available in sizes 15, 17m TS Lightwind)
Test Team Report
The third-generation TS proves how three years of refinement can dial in the model’s performance; Best now has a terrific, aggressively behaved all-terrain model. The TS has crisp and lively power, and delivers some of highest levels of performance flying you’ll find in a multi-disciplined, four-line kite SLE. Its canopy is solid and flutter-free, and the TS maintains the power and pull you want for going big and riding hard. It can boost aggressive jumps and reacts quickly to turning input from the bar. With smooth power delivery through the loop, the TS dishes up mega-high jumps and kite loops to any rider with the appropriate skill and commitment. With some front line trimming, the 12m also performs well for unhooked freestyle and more technical wake and freestyle tricks.
The water relaunch of the TS is effortless and one of the best of the big-jumping, high-performance group. The TS is a kite that prefers to be driven hard and fast, and will reciprocate with lots of air time and exciting performance with every turn. At the same time, it’s user-friendly enough for the intermediate rider, and has decent but not ungodly amounts of range and depower. Like many of the wider wing-tipped, open C platform kites, in the upper end of its range and charging speeds it takes a combination of edging and sheeting-out to kill the drive and power from the kite. The smaller sizes are completely wave-capable and smartly move to a three-strut platform in the smallest two sizes for even better drift, stability and nimble steering.
The TS could have more capable and instant depower, which would increase its range and versatility.
High-powered for aggressive riders, with slightly less instant depower than some might prefer.
Designer Notes: Peter Stiewe
This year we concentrated on fine tuning the TS to enhance its performance in every condition. We improved the bar feedback and turning speed by modifying the wingtip design and revising the canopy profile to help the kite to have better stability. Another change was to our EZ Pump™ Inflation system with the installation of the new patented Twist Lock Valve. This new system ensures easier and faster pumping allowing three times the airflow giving you more time on the water. We were also able to increase the wind range by modifying the canopy profile of each kite size. The TS is one of the first kites on the market to showcase ride optimized geometry which means we test every size to maximize its performance capabilities. New Delrin sliders were added to reduce bridle wear and tear. Delrin is a self-lubricating plastic that helps to create less friction between moving parts. It is the same material we use on our bars as a Best patented insert where the depower rope passes through the bar center. The strut closures were modified in order to enhance bladder protection. Color coded kook proof flying line connections were added to the kite to prevent the ability to attach the lines incorrectly. In conclusion with these changes, we strive to make this kite the most suitable in all conditions for multiple riding levels.