Naish S26 Dash kite 12 m used in very good condition no repairs or damage.
The Dash is higher aspect than anything we’ve tested and was created using DNA from the Torch C kite. It feels very much like a Torch with some bridling for extra comfort and ease. The Dash races forward through the window and you need to use the kite’s speed and turning to generate power for board speed, rather than the current trend of using the sheeting power of a more deeply profiled freeride kite.
The turn is very fast and reactive. I don’t mind having to stroke a kite up and down a few times to get going. I’d describe most other kites in this issue as your ‘daily drivers’ – they’re comfortable enough to cruise to the shops. The Dash is like the track car that you keep in the garage and take out on weekends to put a smile on your face and it suits advanced freeriders / freestylers. What the Dash lacks in easy all roundedness, it gains in pure sporty, forward drive. This machine is built to be driven at high revs, but you need to understand the gearing to achieve the super quick lap times that the Dash is capable of.
The quick forward flight helps with gust handling and I was never overloaded with torque in my harness, even in winds that were well above 75% of the Dash’s wind range. I never had to adjust my upright riding position.
That said, this is an important bit to understand: you can’t ride this kite slowly, otherwise it does pull you hard when you’re powered up. You have to match that fast forward flight with a quick board speed; then it’s light, lovely and energising.
Although there is a lot of depower available at the bar, the Dash is still a million miles away from sheet-and-go kites like the Pivot or Rebel. You need a reasonable amount of skill and you have to want to ride fast. Even though the Dash flies high into the window, in overpowered situations you need good technique to dig your rail in. It likes a lot of tension in the lines all the time and you control the kite as much with your rail as you do with the bar. You can’t just trudge your rail in and ride slowly, otherwise, like a dog pulling at its leash, the Dash will hit the front of the window and come back, then drive forward again, choke on its collar and come back. So you need to commit to riding at a certain speed, but I absolutely loved it; gunning past people on the same sized kites, even in lighter winds, because the kite is so keen and responsive, I could throw the kite round and get up to speed very effectively.