The folks at Ride Snowboards have always been down for the cause (DFC). They even took it as far as making it a limited line of DFC product for a couple seasons. I was reading the early winter issue of Snowboard Canada and saw a letter published in the reader mail section. This guy was saying that it seems like Burton is the only company to progress the sport. Dear sir, Burton is making exclusive gear for their boards. Buy their boards, buy their bindings. It's simple marketing. EST isn't progressing anything. But I digress. All I have to say to this guy is look into Ride. 2009 isn't done yet, but the upcoming 2010 line up from Ride contains more tech than a full 4 year engineering degree. The theme for the line up is light. As in lightweight. Be prepared to get your mind blown by the little things and the big things Ride is doing to make riding more fun for everyone.
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="257" caption="Ride Insano featturing BlownLight Meta soles and Closer lacing system"][/caption]
Select boot models, namely the Insano, RFL and FUL for men and the Cadence for women, for the upcoming season contain ultralight blown insoles. Traditional soles take rubber and compress it into a mold, compressing the rubber and making it dense. BlownLight Meta soles have a shell of full phylon (read: super light!) injected with foam in select pockets, leaving room for a support shim in the arch and a super cush gel pad for your nimble heels. What's more, they've got ice picks of hardened plastic under the toes for making hiking the park easier. In terms of liners, they've done away with the ankle strap and put velcro on the tongue, so it just stick in place. Simple, fast, light and snug. They've also profiled their liner to their boot, using contact points to attach the liner to the boot for a better fit, less heel lift, and, best of all, a light, comfortable feeling that'll make you think you're walking on water. The Closer system on Boa Coiler boots ensure that the force along the lace line is spread evenly, giving you a tight, comfortable fit all the way down to your toes. For you picky people, there is a Focus Boas system on the men's Crew boot.
How wide is your stance? If you're like me, it's full maxed out. Looks good, makes some tricks easier, but also spells the death of your knees. Not with the new Ride binders! They've cantered footbeds, angled towards the center of your board. They come in a variety of degrees for a fully customizable stance. Try the Wedgie 1.0, 2.0, 2.5 or 4.0. Check your degrees, son. Also, the Contrabands are back this year as Nitrane Contrabands, fetureing a gel V-net between the forked opening. It looks good, and it provides extra grip on your boot to make it fit nice and snug into the bindings. Who thought Wedgies could be this comfortable? Also available on women's bindings. Oh yea, did I mention the women's Bandita Contrabands? No web toes on these yet, try back in a couple seasons. For the guys out there looking for a truly unique looking bindings, Ride has the EX for you in the Franken colourway. No single piece is the same colour. EVER!
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="450" caption="Left: Men's EX and Nitrane Contraband. Right: Women's Bandita Contraband"][/caption]
Boards, Boards, Boards
Last season, Ride featured their Lowrise rocker on one DFC model board, the Crush. This season, the DFC line has been done away with, and the Crush is going on the main line. You've seen boarding companies do art collaborations with huge LA firms for limited edition bards. Ride took their art team to the poorest elementary school art program in Seattle and got Pam Neithercott's 3rd period grade 7 art class to draw a mythical creature consisting of two other animals. The results can bee seen on the top sheet of the Crush...BUT! only when it gets cold. That's right kids, the top sheet is a blank piece of lined paper at room temperature, but drop that deck in the cold and the ink changes colour and the prints are visible in black. Mood Changing Inks!? Legit collab!? High five! All proceeds from the collaboration go to Danny Way Middle School. Speaking of Mood Changing Inks, the Ride Kink also features this tech. Solid colour it your house, fully inked on the hill. Also featuring the Membrain topsheet, so light, it's almost paper thin!
The big news for this season is the Ride Machete, featuring Lowrise Rocker. This board is couples rocker with a Blenz sidewall for a hook free ride. The top sheet was desgined by the folks at Morning Breath Inc. and is influenced by grafiti culutre, creating an intense pop art/street graf fusion. You could frame it and stick it in a art gallery when you're not riding it.
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="450" caption="Ride x Morning Breath Inc. bring Brooklyn to you"][/caption]
The DH2 is back this year with matching plaid Ltd edition Contrabands. The big news with the DH2 are the limited edition DH2's. No one knows what these boards are going to look like. Shops are going to have to order all three versions without even so much as a sneak peek. The DH2.1, 2.2 and2.3 are slated to be released on Oct.1, Nov.1 and Dec.1, respectively. This one time release graphic is sure to be sick, but the only issue lies in which will be the sickest. I'm collecting wagers all summer. $50, 7:1 odds that it's DH2.2. Also features Membrain.
The women's line also feautres a Lowrise rocker on the all new Compact with Membrain topsheet. How else do you think that sparkle on the topsheet is possible? Lowrise is also on the Canvas, a full Ride/Matix collaboration. The complete kit features the Sigma MVMNT binding and Cadence boot, all in a matched out colourway.
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="218" caption="Left to Right: The Machete, Compact and Crush"][/caption]
True to form, the folks at Ride stuck to their world renowned die cut bases. To change it up next season, Ride put solid graphics on the bases then overlayed them with die cut patterns which are semi transparent. Bascially, it's a front to back artistic bonanza.
There you have it. A quick overview of Ride's lineup. Jason and Myrosha were nice enough to give me a tour of the showroom and let me take a few pictures. Thanks a lot guys! They are also hooking us up with some product to test out, so we'll be better able to inform you on a bunch of park boards, bindings and those super light boots! Stay tuned for the reviews from Dan Jonas, Alice Gorton and yours truly.
Let the kids ride for free,