First time on a switch kite ever! Been flying Core kites last 4years and on Core riot Xr2 all season. Just demoed the Core GTS2 last week in 12-18 mph and 20-30mph. I am not a switch team rider or rider for anyone else but me. Just love kiting. Hope this review helps. Please ask questions.
I am 185 dry ride a 135x42 shinn monk and 5'2 surfboard.
First test October 3rd at Sherman island between 4:30pm-7:10pm. See ikitesurf graph archive
First off lowend is incredible yesterday was a max high tide at end of flood and plenty of power, sweet low end. 10m will be my biggest nitro2 for sure. Wind was averaging 14-16 Mph and only dipped a couple times really low and only struggled when wind dropped once for 5-10 minutes down to 11mph. this kite kite pulls effortlessly upwind in light air, very impressive.
Build quality: really nicely finished kite. Obvious attention to detail and quality control. One pump is excellent, big pump valve works very well, bridle material is the best available sleeved with line guides instead of pulleys and same bridle line as
Core kites. In the air the canopy looks super tight and flawless no obvious wrinkles, super clean tight canopy.
In the Air: 21.5m lines on Core sensor bar 52cm width. 18.5m front lines from Y split to kite and 3m from chicken loop to Y split. This going to be really bare minimum on front line length any shorter and you will find the won't turn well and the
LE will distort. This is because of the bridle. If the Y is too close to the kite it will pull the main pulley to close to midline and grossly affects handling. This happens on Core kites as well as any kite with this type of bridle to a degree. Anyway, kite flew well on this setup, but will add 1.5m to front lines to see if the handling feels better, which it felt good anyway, I just want to see if there is an improvement. The core XR2 turning speed and tun radius is faster/tighter with the correct distance from Y split to kite. If it is to short the wingtip flaps just a little on the xr2 from LE flattens too much, I think it makes the kite handle a little different. looping with out proper line tuning can affect the handling So be careful how you tune your setup for each kite you fly.
Stability: Insanely awesome, nice job Bill Hansen!! Kite is so stable, no front or back stall. Even in this light wind let go of the bar with 40cm throw and kite doesn't nothing weird and will fly itself and does seem to veer off in either direction.
Power is very linear, "NOT" on/off. Ride at the kite and it just floats with you. Kite Loop it and nice float if lines slack. Stability is terrific! I was worried that LE diameter would make it less stable and this is not the case.
Turning/bar pressure: moderately fast on the nitro2 , Xr2 and GTS2 are faster and repond faster. The nitro2 is precise and really powered turns. Turns are more powerful than both Cores, but the GTS loop is more powerful and easier because rips so fast and throws you. Nice turning characteristics, not super fast but good and not twitchy at all. It has a medium sized turn radius so the loop is powerful. powered turns help build apparent wind in light wind like last night. Really stellar control and bar feedback. Started off on light bar setting then moved forward one to middle setting.
On light rear setting there is nice feedback and pressure, core xr2 and GTS2 are lighter. I like moderately heavy pressure for kite loops and turn stability so you feel the kite really easy. All 3 kites have this the nitro2 is a little heavier. All kites have excellent feedback
Middle setting is perfect for me and has more pressure, more linear steering feedback and
wingtip more stable. And if wind is really weird I would put the line on heavier bar pressure as this will stablize wingtip even more. The Core GTS2 was like that as well. Much better stability overall with rear line connected on heavy pressure...less torque on the wing tip and less
depower = stability and less flare and wobble as I call it.
Jumping: pretty sweet for light wind on a 10m @ 185lbs. The xr2 had only a little more float for light wind jumping, but not much. Easy to jump, good feel easy to redirect and glide forward. Will need more wind for proper jump test.
Kite loop: as I said powered turns! This= fun kite loop even in light air.
Anyway loops very nice, but need more wind for real test.
Pop: Core GTS2 is better, but at the sacrifice of lowend jumping and hangtime. Nitro and XR2 have similar pop in light air. GTS is specialist as Pop machine. Probably the average rider won't use pop to there full advantage anyway so not a loss in the nitro. I am sure the pop will be better in heavier wind on nitro2.