At A Glance
F-ONE were one of the first brands to invest in wingsurfing, and they hit the ball out of the park with the Swing. It was one of the first wings on the market that set a benchmark in terms of performance. The follow up from F-ONE is the all-new Strike, launched earlier this year; it is the wing of choice for the pro team and noticeably Titouan Galea, who has been doing some incredible tricks on the GWA tour with it.
The design goal was to improve the stability and performance at the top end while still maintaining the easy to fly nature of the original Swing. On top of that, F-ONE wanted it to jump well and built a lot of stiffness into it while still keeping the weight low so it would freefly when you are surfing.
Featuring a noticeably more structured canopy layout and frame make, up the wing is designed to be a lot stiffer than the Swing. It features a deeper dihedral too, which is there to increase stability on the wave. The final major feature of note are the double, long handles, rather than the multiple options on the Swing. A really nice touch is a dump valve on the centre strut and an enlarged one pump tube to make set up and pack down a breeze.
On The Water
Wow, coming from the Swing, the Strike is a very different animal; the stiffness allows you to pump onto the foil in light winds quickly while also ensuring the wing won't deform when jumping. Where the Swing was soft and perhaps feeling a little lacking in rigidity, the Strike fills the void with performance in spades.
Its tight canopy design makes riding in gusty conditions easy, with the wing keeping its shape for longer. This is noticeable in very overpowered conditions too, the Strike holds its shape, and the flutter is reduced to a bare minimum. The top-end on this 5m is seriously impressive, we've had it out in pumping 35mph+ conditions, and while that's at the very limits of its ability, it still feels very controlled and manageable.
The low end is good; the wing develops solid power and delivers it smoothly, and once up on the foil, it is easy to keep that apparent wind flowing and maintain speed. The tight canopy also allows the Strike to point upwind really well; we were getting some great angles compared to others on the water.
Finally, the wing's stability while wave riding is impressive; once locked into the power of the ocean, you can grab the front handle, and the Strike behaves impeccably; it doesn't wander or try and flip at all. At first, we were a little worried seeing the dual handle set up, would it be enough after becoming used to so many hoops on some wings? F-ONE have done a great job of placing them perfectly, and this reduces confusion for beginners and allows you to slide your hands forwards and backwards on the handles to trim the wing. They are also comfy for long sessions, and by reducing the overall number, weight can be shaved off too.
The Strike is an impressive bit of kit and has been my go-to daily driver for most of my sessions recently. It's got an incredible range, feels fantastic in the air and gives me lots of confidence to try new things. With a broad appeal from beginner to expert, it's going to put a lot of smiles on a lot of faces.
This review was in Issue 8 of Tonic.For more information visit F-One
By Rou ChaterRou Chater has been kitesurfing for over twenty years, paddleboarding for the last six years, and was there testing the first wingsurfer from Naish in Tarifa when it arrived on the continent. He is passionate about riding waves and exploring new places. As the publishing editor, he oversees everything at Tonic but also our sister magazines IKSURFMAG and IMB. He's been on the water since he was born and has never looked back, in the winter you'll find him chasing swells in the Caribbean and during the summer he can be found all over Europe at various SUP, Kitesurf and Mountain Bike events getting features for the magazines.