• The “R.I.P.” Award •
While we were slightly tempted to give the S7 the “Good Riddance” Award, that would be disrespectful to a ski that played a huge role in modern ski design and shape.
Many, many people loved this ski. Some of us hated it. But it was unquestionably important, and we’d like to acknowledge it and Rossi’s designers for making a significant contribution to skiing as we now know it.
Having said that, we are glad to see it gone, and we think that Rossignol has made a very good move here. (More on this below.)
Runner Up: Rossignol Sickle
Ouch. BLISTER reviewer Jason Hutchin’s favorite ski of all time has been tossed on the scrapheap of history. The 11/12 Sickle was a very good ski, but it seems like Rossignol marketed this ski far too narrowly, just to park and jib rats. Truth is, the Sickle was an extremely capable all-mountain ski, as pretty much every Sickle owner will tell you.
Jason, we send our condolences. Let’s all keep Jason in our thoughts and prayers.
2nd Runner Up: Moment Bibby Pro
It wasn’t only a tough week for Jason. Our beloved Bibby Pro has been changed.
Admittedly, sometimes change is good, and we promise to keep an open mind when skiing the new Bibby. But, man, the Bibby Pro was sooooo dialed.
And, yes, Moment now has a ski in their lineup called the Exit World that is a whole lot like a lighter-weight Bibby. Who knows, the Exit World and the new Bibby could be amazing. We’ll find out soon. (See rocker profile pics of the Moment Exit World and the new Bibby.)
But it still feels like Josh Bibby decided one day that he’d go tinker with the Mona Lisa or the Sistine Chapel, so, forgive us if we’re a little nervous.
But you have to respect Moment for not resting on their laurels. Josh wanted a new ski. The guys at Moment had been touring on the Bibby Pro, and decided they wanted to make a lighter version of it. They’re building what they want to build, simple as that.
Maybe that’s why Moment’s 2013/2014 catalog shows a guy facing the sun and embracing a new day …
…or a guy facing us, throwing up his middle fingers.
• Extreme Makeover Award •
The S7 is gone. The most excellent Sickle (formerly called the S6) is gone. The very good Scimitar? Gone. The best-selling S3 has been retooled. They introduced the new Soul 7. They completely overhauled the Super 7—a ski that one of BLISTER’s brash reviewers declared “obsolete” after Rossi introduced the outstanding Squad 7. Oh, and they messed with that outstanding Squad 7, too.
It reminds me of the scene from Kill Bill, Vol. I, where Uma Thurman mows down all of The Crazy 88s in a blood bath, and no one is left unscathed.
Nevertheless, it looks like Rossignol has made some very good moves.
But while there’s a good chance you’ve seen Rossi’s marketing campaign that highlights the honeycomb-construction tips of the 7 SERIES…
…we actually think the most exciting update has to do with the lineup’s new tails.
Rossignol basically took the tail of the 12/13 Squad 7—a ski we love—and implemented it all the way down the 7 SERIES line. Nice.
Here’s the quick run down:
Rossi Sin 7: The very good Rossignol S3 has morped into the Sin 7. It is a bit stiffer through the tail than the S3 (Nice), and it has more subtle tail rocker than the S3 (Nice).
Rossi Soul 7: The new ski in the S7 lineup, the Soul 7 comes in at 136-106-126mm, which nicely fills a gap in the old S7 lineup. And yes, it’s got the Squad 7 tail.
Rossi Super 7: We felt that the 12/13 Squad 7 had rendered the Super 7 obsolete. Well, the Super 7 is back, and we want to ski it. Basically, the new Super 7 is the old S7, but updated. It’s got a stiffer tail, and it now has that Squad 7 tail shape (cue Händel’s Hallelujah chorus). It also has a more subtle, less abrupt tip rocker. Rossi also got rid of the metal that they’d been putting in the Super 7, so we expect the Super to feel far more lively than its predecessor. Really looking forward to skiing this one.
Rossi Squad 7: The new Squad 7 has undergone the least transformation in the line, which is probably obvious given that the rest of the line was made in its image. We wouldn’t have been mad at all if Rossi had left this ski exactly the same, but by lightening up the tips and tails, they have made the Squad more accessible and less demanding.
Ski design always involves tradeoffs, and we have little doubt that the Squad 7 will ski well. What we don’t know yet is how much friendlier the Squad 7 got at the expense of crud-busting ability. We’ll see.
• The Swagger Award (Which Might Retroactively Become the “Most Innovative” Award) •
DPS is doing two big things this season:
DPS has introduced their “Spoon” technology to the Lotus 138 Pure and the Lotus 120 Pure, in addition to the Spoon 150, which is now finally ready for the market. And we’re excited to check this out.
But frankly, the spooning of the Lotus line isn’t even the biggest thing happening at DPS. That would be Pure3. (Well, actually, the biggest thing might be that DPS skis are now being built in Utah, but whatever.)
DPS is calling this “the next big leap in carbon construction,” and claiming that their Pure3 skis are now “even more powerful, damper, and more refined,” and that they have “significantly altered the way the ski reacts to bumpy terrain that transmits energy into your body.”
If you’ve been reading our DPS reviews, you know that this is where we’ve felt that DPS skis have left the most room for improvement. We don’t expect the Pure3 construction to suddenly feel like very heavy, metaled-out planks, but we are curious, and we are excited to find out for ourselves if, in fact, this is “the best DPS construction to date,” and “revolutionary both on paper and on snow.”
Our testing of the Pure3 construction begins immediately.