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To pair with the second generation of their WFS wing, Eleveight have introduced a wing foil-focused board, the Evolve. Available in four sizes – 56, 72, 90 and 125l – the Evolve has a compact outline and succeeds in hiding away its volume and maintaining a performance-focused outline. We had the 90l 5’2 on test, which Eleveight pitch as their beginner/intermediate option, or a good higher performance board for heavier riders. It is built around an EPS core, then the Evolve incorporates a 3k carbon sheet, ensuring that only 2 x 4oz layers of fiberglass are required in the remainder of the layup, thus keeping the board stiff but impressively light for a 90l board.
The Evolve has a ‘surfier’ outline than other wing boards, with a more pulled-in nose and with the bulk of the volume distributed through the center of the board rather than further forward. Beveled rails reduce the wetted surface of the board and there is a distinct step in the tail. The bottom has a pronounced double concave through the front half of the board, tapering back to a flat exit. Overall the build quality is excellent and the Evolve feels like a lightweight, premium product.
On the water and this mid-size 90l board is relatively stable. We have tested more stable boards in this volume, but the compromise there comes in performance and, for a future proofed board, we would say that the Evolve is a more progressive choice than something ‘squarer’. Once you are on your feet, the Evolve feels lively and accelerates quickly, tracking intuitively. For us the big surprise with the Evolve was the way in which it pops up onto the foil. It has a real forward spurt of speed and takes off incredibly quickly. It isn’t something we have really experienced before but the board release is phenomenally quick, and you are up to speed instantly. If you were pumping to get going then the tail also releases very quickly and, again, you are up and going as soon as the board hints at lifting.
For transitions the Evolve requires deft footwork but if you get it right then you are rewarded with a very responsive and locked in feel. Every movement is transmitted to the foil and it is a very satisfying board to ride when everything clicks. For pumping, even at 90l we could keep the Evolve going and the deck grip and concave felt good underfoot. In the surf and there is very little to ‘catch’ and that surfier outline comes into its own, making the Evolve an excellent choice if this is your main discipline.
Overall, the Evolve is a lively and super-responsive wing foiling board. We were very impressed with the overall balance of the board and in particular how well it releases in take-off. If you wing in the waves or if you just want to have a quicker and more tuned-in ride then the Evolve will tick all the right boxes for you. AH