Mar 4, 2011
RRD helped create the Freestyle Wave category and, with this well-rounded version, it continues to be the epitome of what the term stands for. We took this RRD out in everything from logo-high San Carlos, Baja waves to Texas flatwater, and it was never out of place.
This is the one board that any-level rider, from those experiencing their first highwind shortboard to pros, can take out in any condition and have fun. It gets planing nicely, as well—for its 85 litres—and has the speed to make even the flattest water exciting. In bump-and-jump conditions it will jump to the moon when asked, but it can also mow down steep chop if staying grounded is what you prefer. It begs to carve turns and will carve a tight enough arc to fit in between chop or get you where you want on a wave. It has a slightly less wave bias than some of the other FSW’s tested, but still performed well enough for plenty of lip-smacking excitement.
Its rider position is spot-on and makes it just as comfortable for intermediates as it does for advanced riders. It responds well to trim work so there is plenty to grow into, but even without it the board has plenty to offer. The big, thick heel pads feel odd at first, but after a couple runs you seem to forget about them. If you already own an RRD with these pads then you’ll likely want to stick with them, as most other brands won’t feel nearly as cushy. Like all RRD’s, this FSW comes ready-to-ride out of the box, with Dakine-built straps and a Maui Fin Company fin so you don’t have to spend any extra money on accessories.
Riders looking to find a board that can do everything well will be hard-pressed to find a better board than this Freestyle Wave 85. robertoriccidesigns.com