"...a sail with incredible low-end acceleration that planes early, has excellent top speed, and is extremely easy to handle due to its short luff and boom lengths. The ultralight construction makes it extremely responsive in lighter winds, and easy to waterstart."
on the beach
The Naish was one of the most compact sails on test, with the second shortest luff (458cm) and the shortest boom length (198cm). At 4.48kg the sail is impressively light, and in fact the lightest of the group. It was the only sail in test to set on an RDM mast as standard, which resulted in the lightest overall mast and sail combined weight.
The foot area is quite small, yet actually quite low. So too is the boom cut-out, which to be honest was just a bit too low for our 6'1" and taller Clones. Not only did they have to set the boom right at the top of the cut-out, but it also gave quite a steep boom angle, with the back of the boom feeling quite low as a result.
The Indy was one of the flatter profiled sails on test, but still had reasonable tuning versatility. The sail has been designed with a flatter profile to maintain upwind and close-reaching performance at the bottom end of the wind range, where Naish claim most riders need it the most. We found that it had a tendency to hold quite a bit of power (more on this later) on the back hand, so tended to work nearer the maximum downhaul settings most of the time. Where many of the other sails liked to have the outhaul bagged out a bit for extra power and performance, the Naish actually seemed to work best with more of a neutral outhaul setting to keep the power locked in place and capitalise on the sail’s manoeuvrability.
Range: 5.8, 6.4, 7.0, 7.6, 8.2
Mast: Naish 90% 430cm RDM
Sail + Mast: 6.5kg
on the water
The Naish was definitely a unique feeling sail within this group. It felt a lot less blasting / race-orientated than the other sails, but at the same time a lot more manoeuvrable. It was softer and more ‘springy’ in feel, but it was the power from the back hand that set it aside from the rest of the group.
The Indy tended to hold quite a bit of power on the back hand. This gave the sail decent grunt and a reassuring feel of power, but limited the top end. It wasn’t uncontrollable at the top end (thanks to the sail’s spring and forgiving feel) – it just didn’t reach the same top speed because the gusts were about holding the power rather than acceleration. It certainly wasn’t slow, but it didn’t have the real flat-out speed of the other more ‘freerace’ orientated sails. Naish have their triple-cam Grand Prix for this purpose.
Gybing and manoeuvres are where the Indy really came into its own, and it was by far the most manoeuvre-orientated sail of the group. The flatter profile, springier, more forgiving feel, light weight and RDM mast all contributed to its excellent performance. It rotated really well, and anyone who likes to grip the mast through the rig flip in a gybe or tack will appreciate an RDM.
Although the static weight of the sail was very light, the extra power from the back of the sail made it feel a little heavier in the hands in a straight line. However, it did feel a little smaller in area than most of the other sails. This may have been down to the lighter weight, the flatter profile or the more compact shape – or perhaps a combination of all three.
In lighter winds the Naish had reasonable power, but it was the ease of pumping that was most notable. The springy, flexible feel worked really well to help pump you onto the plane, allowing the sail to spring open and then whip back with each pump. Even if you aren’t an expert at pumping, the nature of the Indy helps to make the most of any rig movements that you exert on the sail, powering you onto the plane quickly and easily.
The Naish Indy appears to be pitched a little differently to most of the other sails within this group. It’s focused a lot more towards manoeuvrability rather than the harder, lockedin blasting feel that the other sails offer. It was by far the best manoeuvre-orientated sail of the group, and while it didn’t feel quite as ‘blasty’ as the others, it wasn’t far off the pace in most conditions.