The Ozone distributor in Spain just sent us the first Ozone Zephyr sample. Kites are currently in production at the Ozone factory and should be delivering in the next few weeks.
The Zephyr is a new kite model from Ozone, available in a single 17m size. It is an optimized design for this size offering a dedicated light wind kite, that is also a freestyle powerhouse in moderately light wind.
We took it out to Utah Lake last night where the wind was light and steady from the north. it had kicked up to 12mph by the time a 2oo + pound rider was planing upwind on a mid size board. (started on a glide and sized down after first tack)
As the wind came up it averaged 12-15mph over the 3 hour session. 3 riders switched off on the Zephyr, including a 160 pounder and myself at 190 pounds. I was powered on a Underground 132 deck.
So, the kite is well constructed with beefy material and no extra gimmicky stuff stitched into the leading edge, a total minimalist kite, all the way down to the bridle. Laid next to a 13 Edge and a 15m Sport kites, the Zephyr has a moderate aspect ratio that falls between the two other kites. The Zephyr has 5 struts and thicker tubes than the other Ozone models. On a scale, the new 17m weighed almost the same as the 15m Sport, must be the lighter weight material!
In 12mph the kite had plenty of power to crank upwind. It relaunched flawlessly and quickly, rolling over on itself. I'd even say it relaunched better than the 15m due to the new shape. The Zephyr flies on the standard Ozone 2009 4 line bar, so you can switch bars around to any 4 line kite.
In the sky the kites agility could be compared to the 13m Edge, it loops quickly and in a small window, allowing you to work the kite when needed, and maneuver quickly to get out of trouble. The bar pressure is light, especially for the size, you can tell when you steer and the bar swings easily left and right with direct input to the kite as there are ZERO Pulleys on the Zephyr. But, as you pull the bar in you can feel the power as the kite loads up and lets you lean way back digging in your board edge.
All in all a very fun kite to fly and a solid performer in the 17m range. I would give it thumbs up for the following:
Light wind power and agility.
Bigger guys kite for all conditions.
Big Air kite for light to moderate wind depending on your weight.
Hello Zephyr....Hello Light Wind.