The Real World Wave (RWW) started out life several years ago as an 'easy going' waveboard. Great for blasting and first time wave riders, but not really delivering performance at the top end.
Over the past two years this has changed! Phil Horrocks and Werner Gnigler have been working hard in Cape Town to ensure that the RRW really does deliver what it promises: high performance in a wide range of wave sailing conditions from onshore to cross-off.
Offered in five sizes (63, 68, 74, 82 & 92) and two constructions, we tested the lightest (Pro Edition) 74 Real World Wave II.
"The Real World Wave is a test winning design concept, proven year in and year out to be the ideal choice for any wave conditions around the world. International magazine tests credited the JP Real World Wave as the only wide body board delivering a direct rail to rail wave riding feel which so far has only been associated with narrow wave boards.
They are not demanding to the rider and require very little input but have great wave riding potential. True Real World Wave boards, which feel at home in any kind of conditions” – JP Website
The JP achieved a GOLD Quality rating with the following scores:
It’s clear that the JP is a very high quality product. Plenty of thought has gone into the detailing of the board and it's accessories. It comes standard with a well-matched 22cm G10 fin and a very good set of straps and pads.
In our opinion it’s just a shame that JP don’t offer any recommended settings on the board itself, although they do include a manual stating that all JP boards are set-up to work from the middle positions of fin and mast track.
Despite the RRW having the lowest quoted volume of the group (74 litres), it did feel one of the bigger boards to sail – both in terms of float and sail carrying capacity etc
It feels a nicely compact shape to sail, which is reaffirmed by its second shortest (226cm) and second widest (55.6) dimensions within the group.
The JP has a very reassuring, directional feel to the way it sails. It feels fast and lively, yet it is well controlled, even when very overpowered.
It's not quite as fast as the Fanatic (which is an absolute rocket ship and rates as the quickest board in the group), but the RWW makes up for the slight deficit by being more easy going and stands above every other board in the group for ‘get up and go’.
The JP has all the key ingredients of a great jumping board. Not only does it have excellent ‘get up and go’ qualities, but the directional feel helps line up the jump and the powerful fin gives good push/lift off the top of the wave.
The compact (short and wide) dimensions also give the board a nice controllable feeling in the air.
The JP stands out as a board that is easy to get on with. There is simply nothing surprising or bad mannered about the way it rides. Less experienced wave riders will love the efficiency with which it holds its speed through the turns. For the un-initiated, it flatters technique and compensates for less than perfect conditions.
But it doesn’t end there. The JP also has a lot to offer advanced sailors as well. It has a fantastic flowing feel to the way it rides. Even at higher speeds the grip is excellent through turns. The top turn isn’t quite as loose as the Fanatic or snappy as the Evo, but that’s a minor chink in the performance of a board that otherwise caters so very well for all skill levels.
Something in the name ‘Real World Wave’ implies that the board is going to feel out of place when taken into bigger cross-off conditions. This was certainly true of some older models, but not this 09 ’74 model.
The same great characteristics that we found in cross-on conditions are also to be found in down the line. The RWW is smooth and flowing and transitions really nicely from rail to rail, which gives the board a nice ‘surfing’ feel to it. Less experienced wave riders will again find the board extremely user friendly, whilst advanced riders will love the rail to rail turns (just like the brochure says!) that can now be carried out on the RRW. It isn’t quite as loose or slashy as the Quatro or Fanatic (New Wave), but only very advanced sailors are likely to pick up on this.
The JP is amongst the best board in the test for less experienced wave sailors. It has a very forgiving nature and will flatter technique with its ease of use and ability to maintain speed through the turns.
The impressive thing about the RRW is that unlike some older generations of the board, it remains very applicable for advanced sailors as well, particularly in cross-on conditions.
‘Compact’ is the word that keeps appearing when our Clones describe the JP. It has a lovely controllable feel underfoot. In a straight line it feels directional, fast and firm. The powerful fin and slightly less cushioned pads and stiffer straps contribute to this feel.
The RRW is also notable for its ease of use. Whether sailing in a straight line or wave riding, it's one of those boards that allows you to trundle along in 2nd gear or put your foot down and drive it hard in 5th. Either way, it responds well with excellent manners.
The standard 22cm G10 fin is a good match for the board, however if you have money to spend and plan using a 4.2 or smaller on this board on a regular basis, you would probably benefit from an extra 21cm fin as the standard fin is quite powerful.
The fin position worked well around the middle of the track. Of course, you can move it forward to help loosen the board up or back to make it more directional.
We found the mast track to work best around the middle of the track for all sizes of sail (4.0m -5.0m). In proper down the line conditions with a 5.0m we had it about 1cm further forward of this.
The RWW does feel like one of the bigger boards in the test (probably due to the width). It was one of the most comfortable at carrying our bigger 5.0m test sails and one of the less comfortable (albeit still totally useable) with the smaller 4.0m sails. We would anticipate that going up to 5.3 should be no problem, but at the bottom end, whilst a 3.7 would be useable, you would probably be better off with the smaller (68) version if you plan using this size of sail regularly.
For a first time buyer of a 75 litre board to an advanced rider, or for cross-on right through to cross-off conditions, there are few boards with better all-round appeal than the RRW. It’s a great ‘one board does it all’ solution for high wind sailing, only lacking ever so slightly at the very top end of the performance scale.