|JN2 PRIMA DONNA
The Prima Donna 2 is a dedicated hybrid freestyle and powerful wave kite. The constant pull and steady position in the wind window make it easier to learn new tricks. Excelling in high jumps it provides perfect balance with no back stalling and, if riders should unintentionally under-jump the kite’s zenith, the kite’s leeward tendency will automatically stabilise it. The kite remains stable in almost every position and, even during massive kite loops the pressure point will not shift or cause interference. The bar feedback makes this kite trustworthy in all sorts of positions and situations, especially unhooked. The constant pull makes for good wave riding and, even when completely depowered or with riders going downwind towards the kite, PD 2 is still sensitive to every steering input and turns as smoothly as usual. The hybrid kite design without bridles provides a wider depower range. With both a low wind and a high wind option, riders can make the most of the widest reasonable wind range. The kite’s adjustable, exactly trimmed fifth-line is a must for safety, controlling the kite with one single line.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
When the test team saw me pulling a kite out of the back of the van without a bag, their instincts told them it was some sort of half-finished prototype (fear not, it does come with a bag, but we got one sent hot from the factory) but as they unrolled the Primma Donna 2, their faces started to light up, with comments including, 'Holy shit dude, this looks good!', from Chris. The build quality is obvious from the beginning and a lovely special present for the boys was the inclusion of a second, bigger, freestyle chicken-loop option. The change-over for which is very simple: pull the release on the chicken-loop, switch them over, and re-engage the quick-release. Job done. The chicken-loop also self-rights itself when you're unhooked, making it easy to find the hook when you want to hook back in. The bar itself feels good in the hands, is tidy and good looking with simple, functional systems. The kite itself is strong, has a one pump system and funky graphics.
As soon as the kite went up it was obviously solid and stable, behaving itself impeccably. The delivery of power through the bar is just right, really well spaced, balanced and didn't need any fiddling about straight out of the bag. Really impressive speed and fantastic for sent jumps, giving you so much time you can even try a few of the old board-offs. For a C-shaped kite, this has serious amounts of float and really differentiates itself from the competition because of that and, as lofty as it is, it doesn't over fly itself either. The PD2 starts its turn early, driving in from the sides with a bit more pivotal tendencies than some C kites, but still retains a lot of drive from what's still a very healthy loop, turning with impressive power and holding that power throughout. It steers fast, but requires a little more force than some hybrid kites to turn, but in a nice deliberate way; decide where you want it in the sky, tell it, and it's almost there before you know it.
This is really rewarding to fly and very easy to control. A really good all rounder for fairly good riders and upwards to go out and have a fun freeride on. There's loads and loads of depower and even with the stopper set from stock, when you push the bar away you lose a lot of power. If you push that stopper even further, the depower is immense. Pushing that stopper away also really helps the kite relaunch. If you have the stopper set quite far down, then pulling on the fifth line gets the kite over to relaunch as usual, but that extra throw on the chicken-loop line, without the stopper holding the bar, would mean the kite would roll over really easily.
For unhooking we had to trim the kite a little bit, but the trimming system is so smooth to use that it's not a problem and the feeling unhooked is direct, positive and the kite maintains its electric steering feel.
The PD2 is a fantastic hybrid with true C kite handling and capabilities. It provides the ultimate hybrid ease-of-use with freestyle performance and speed. There aren't many confident riders that wouldn't get on with this, seriously.
KW LIKED: C kite handling and unhooked performance with the boost and all-round fun of a hybrid kite.
KW WOULD CHANGE: Add a little coating to the chicken-loop line to stop it rubbing a little on your knuckles when riding with your hands butted up right to the centre line a lot. Alternatively, just hold your hands slightly apart.
15, 13, 11, 9 and 7m
This test is in issue #40