Handwing developement has been somewhat stagnate IMO for a few years and then this happened: Patrice Guénolé on Instagram: "ALERT: the new Pulse Double Profil UPE is most amazing wing to set record. You can’t believe how close it is to a pure multi cam windsurf sail. Endless power, amazing balance, upwind like never before, and a top speed you can’t believe. Definitely my fav tool to race with the Team @rattotti_ @bastien_escofet @malo_guenole @clement_hamon It took years to create this beauty. Patented of course. . .. … #wing #wingrace #wingdoubleprofil #wingfoil #topspeed #upwind #fast #foil #hydrofoil"
Genuinely surprised it is the first we’ve seen a double skin wing considering how established it is in windsurf.
Say what you like about Gong, they put money into progressive/innovative R&D more aggressively than most.
The thing it seems with Gong is as soon as they have a prototype that works real good they release it, put it on website as pre order for delivery in 3 months.
Most big companies once they sign off a prototype it takes about 10 months to be produced in quantity and it’s not released until stock is ready.
In the mean time, team riders and schools etc test the product for any faults or flaws before it’s released to public.
It’s great what Gong are doing but I’m sure lots of other brands are testing similar stuff but not shouting about it
I’m not as enthousiaste as you. I not 100% sure but my understanding they are creating a product, making a buzz around it with their ambassador, send the file to china and it’s not the same quality when they produce it….I could be wrong.
I have been following Patrice’s influence in design for 6 years. He is one step ahead of a lot of other designers. His ability to take a new concept and get it into production fast is impressive. He did it with the HIPE using the carbon plate which everyone now does. Gong has produced arguably more hand wing designs than anybody else. I’m not saying that they were all amazing, but some worked great and they were available quickly to market. I also like the direct to consumer model which keeps cost down. They are huge in Europe. Like the Slingshot of Europe. I know this probably isn’t impressive to all the Unifoil proners on here but for me, the scope of his company and they’re offerings is impressive. The second wing I ever bought 6 years ago was a Gong 7m. It was a turd, but it was the first 7M available on market I think. I bought a HIPE inflatable and it served its purpose perfectly for travel and beginners. Good construction. His kid, Malo rips and is humble too and makes it a point to ride production gear in competition. The Cruzader inflatable DW board intrigues me as a useful tool in the travel bag. There’s no way that Gong is just churning out garbage and they are this successful and growing.
This is ultimately what will make them money. The direction with these sports is unpredictable and reacting quickly is an incredible business advantage.
Axis probably sold more PNG1150s into landlocked Europe than anything else combined (would love to know the stats here). Gong noticed and went all in with all their dockstart oriented foils, probably has made them more money than all their prone sales combined (stats here?).
Being quick to take a concept into production is a huge competitive advantage, and taking pre-orders to determine interest and demand is a huge competitive advantage. Look at Axis with their DW boards. They sent out a few and now don’t even stock them because demand is so uncertain (and influenced by sales reps). Gong has the D2C relationship and crucially are smart enough to leverage it.
I’m glad you like their product. To come back to your point on his son, Malo don’t ride production gear in competition. They clearly stated in interviews that he is using gear that they are making in France…then the files are sent in production in china later…that is their marketing to state that he is using production gear. But anyways, I don’t want to be negative on their brand, they do what they do.
Yet the company you ride for, Duotone, did all that testing over last few years and still released wings with the worst leading edge handle ever, wings thats flipped over at the drop of a hat and came apart at the point where the handle joined the strut! So i wouldnt be so quick if i were you to imply Gong releases untested stuff🤔
If you had quoted my whole post you will notice it says they release it as soon as have a good prototype and put it available for pre order.
I did not say they don’t test but simply it is not ready when they release it as it’s normally around 3-4 months after release going on dates from previous stuff such as Cruzader, Sirus etc
I guess in that time they test and change stuff where as other companies release stuff once it’s ready.
And I don’t ride for Duotone I ride with Duotone gear, I am not paid but like good stuff. If you want to pick at things that were wrong with wings a few years ago there’s something you could choose from every brand !
You used to ride for them and still no doubt get stuff free or discounted. Anyway, was just countering any view he might be rushing his designs into production, as you yourself have just admitted that even after youre 10 mnth lead time plenty of companies have released less than perfect wings.
I’m simply saying Gong announce stuff soon as they sign off a prototype where other companies announce stuff once it’s available to buy/ship.
Other brands may have already signed off on a similar wing but won’t announce it until stock is ready.
That’s all I’m saying, wait and see how long it takes until that Gong wing is available to be shipped from the factory not just ones they are prototyping out of France. Prob not before Christmas, yes it’s getting people interested but don’t think other brands are not testing similar stuff. As someone said above Ken Winner has been testing double skin wings for a while.
It was making it look like Patrice is the only one trying new stuff and I’m simply saying he is the only one shouting about it
My first wing was a Gong 5M in 2019. It worked well enough but the leading edge blew up on both ends in roughly the same spot, one end from just dragging the tip in the water in a jibe. A little over 300usd in repair bills to that wing before I sold it for $350.
Clearly they’ve come a long way but I won’t be pre-ordering. Their game seems to be to let the consumer do the product testing.