Flare 101 Carbon, SURF (Germany), October 2013

The Flare is the choice of Kiri Thode and reigning PWA Freestyle World Champion Sarah-Quita Offringa, developed by the world’s best freestyle team.

The Flares are boards that pop air easily and respond to a rider’s move instantaneously. They are fast in acceleration and feel compact and light in sliding and aerial maneuvers.

The following test was featured in the October 2013 edition of SURF Magazin. Read more below.

Starboard Flare 101 Carbon: “New-School Machine”

Find out everything there is to know about the Flare here!

Length: 227 cm
Width: 62 cm
Tail Width: 41.2 cm
Weight: 6.70 kg
Volume: 101 liters
Thickness: 12.1 cm
Fin: Drake Ready to Freestyle 18 (Slot Box)
Sail range: 5.0m² – 6.8m²

On Land:

For 2014, Starboard have brought significant changes to the Flare. First of all, the mast track and footstraps are 5 centimeters closer together compared to the 2013 Flare. Thickness in the tail has been increased quite a bit and the deck shape was made flatter for more stability. Thankfully, the Flare has kept its very comfortable Deluxe footstraps.

Heavy riders can (and should) consider using a bit bigger fin (fitted in a Slot Box 13).

Performance:

The Flare is a new-school machine. There is no other board in the test (except maybe the Wark Freestyle 99) which has that much top speed and radicalness in rotations. And when you apply a bit of pressure on the fin at the end of the move, the Flare immediately slides into a second rotation thanks to the short fin.

The board was designed with a special attention for power moves like konos or air funnels. Thanks to the high cruising speed, feather-light feeling and great pop, it will perform these easily. This Starboard Flare actually seemed to be even more compact compared to the 2013 model.

The price for such radicalness is paid on the straight line where it’s not the fastest to get planing. But two strong sail pumps will fix that easily, after which you’ll enjoy the excellent acceleration. However, big sails (over 6.5m²) and a lot of pressure on the tail can result in some spin-outs.

SURF Verdict:

If you don’t own sails bigger than 5.3m² (or don’t intend on using them for freestyle) and don’t care so much about carving (old-school) moves, this is the right board for you: a 110% freestyle board with power for double moves and quick sliding. For the occasional freestyler who will use sails bigger than 5.3m², the Starboard Kode FreestyleWave 103 is the better choice.

And for more test reviews, just head over to Magazine Test page, with more than 200 reviews going back to 2006!