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Core GT

6 January 2009 | 10:16 am

Running away from the European cold weather we went to Brazil. In our luggage we had the new Core Combat GT.
For the next 18 days our team and a couple of friends were able to ride it for long and long hours. The wind didn’t even miss one day. Our “road trip” was a downwind, from Cumbuco to as far as Jericoacoara. With a lot of adventures on our way; our 4×4 broke 3 times, we had a great ride along the Brazilian Coast with Core Kites.

The Combat GT was the first Delta C-Shape concept we had the opportunity to test. It is actually the third generation of Delta shape as the GT is an “evolution” of the Core Combat. Core Kiteboarding is a German kite manufacturer, based on the Ferhman Island and belongs to the same owners as the Carved Kiteboarding. One of the most important quotes of their team is “Safety and performance”. Hard not to agree on that!

Core R&D team worked on the new model of Core Combat GT for a couple of first months of the year. They wanted everything to be just perfect so they repeated tests in various weather and water conditions. Result? A kite very well built and stable. Apparently they have thought of every last little detail. During 18 days we tested the 7m and 9m in strong winds, from 18 to 32 knots, with both twin tip and directional boards. Riders intermediate to experienced; 55kg to 80kg. All people from our team found something that positively surprised them but not one person could agree on just one feature they liked the most. Even those that were more skeptical in the end agreed that the GT was overall a really good kite :)

First impressions, after taking the kites out of the bags it that they are very well built and light. That is due to the use of special materials such as canopy cloth and Kevlar reinforcements. It is also very durable- it has survived all wave and land crashes, and some of them were very nasty. Bridle lines looks very resistant too thanks to the use of material used in paragliding. The great thing about them is that bridles are not tangling with the kite. A quality that the Core team have apparently worked on succesfully.

The kite bag is very practical and you can carry it as a backpack. Has one disadvantage, you can’t pack the kite with the struts inflated. Besides that, it has the perfect size to fit the kite and some gear. It has as huge pocket at the front (You can pack your fixing kit, screw drivers etc.) and on the side of the bag you have a little pocket and a strap to place you bar.

Pumping the kite was a piece of cake, thanks to the fast one-pump system. You can feel the quality of Core products in little details, like the protection of the inflation system of the kite.

The bar, ESP Control Bar System, comes with 24 meter lines. You can use the same bar in all your kites, it is even compatible with most other kites on the market. The length of the bar is adjustable (45cm/57cm).The ESP: Revolutionary Ejector Safety Performance is a system that lets a rider fully control the bar. It gives a direct feeling of the kite and makes the kite react more precisely (front flying lines are directly attached to adjuster). There is a short-5th-safety line that can be optionally changed for a long 5th line, the system that makes the relaunch much safer. The specially designed system also keeps all the lines of the bar separate in case of a crashed sequence of kite loops, even after 100 rotations in the same direction; it’s easy to place the lines on the right position. Simply pull the bar briefly towards you and all twists come out. So far this feature is totally unique, developed and patented by Core Kiteboarding. The feedback on the ESP Bar is immediate; this means that you have a better feel of the Kites position at all times. The quick release on the bar is simple, safe and easy, even under high loads. The bar has relatively short depower travel thanks to specially designed bridle-system and has a smooth and consistent range of power, if you are in the situation where you need to depower the kite completely you can also do it effectively with almost no effort.
The depower strap is located just above the control bar and it never seemed to be out of reach due to the shorter throw on depower. The safety system is easy to use and almost instinctive. The leash is connected below the bar so in case of the emergency you have everything at reach. Great quality in all the details; you even have a separate bag for the bar. I dare to say it is one of the best bars on the market.

From the time the kite was launched until it was landed we all felt comfortable and had no stability problems at all. It has great turning characteristics. You realize how immediately and directly kite responses on your steering movements.

I particularly liked the feeling of the low pressure on the bar, although not everybody felt the same way. Once again it is thanks to the bridle concept that leaves the bar pressure at the kite. You can tune the feeling of the kite and the bar pressure changing several attachments on the leading edge. Another thing that I really loved was an auto-relaunch system; totally safe and very easy. The kite almost magically relaunches itself after a crash. You crash then relaunch and ride away. It’s as simple as that. We didn’t exhaustingly test the relaunch of the kite, but according to Core, the Relaunch of the COMBAT remains fully functioning even after the hardest of wave crashing. This is because inversions of the Kite through one of the deep bridle “Vs” often found on 1st generation Deltas is impossible.

Another quality that surprised me positively was that it is a really perfect choice if you are looking for a kite easy to jump. You just need to control your kite position on the landing to prevent a kite going back to the wind window. Jumping and hanging time are very good.

This is a truly allround to freestyle kite but whatever your program or your level of kitesurf is the GT will fit on it. Being an allround it is still very good for waves, very stable and has a good pull on the loops. The GT Core is a great kite for beginners to advanced riders because it’s predictable, easy to fly and very easy to relaunch. Beginners will appreciate the control, the stability, depower, moderate bar pressure, wide wind range and control. Advanced riders will fall in love fast after they attempt a few jumps and kiteloops. If you are willing to learn and progress, this is a kite for you. All the experienced riders will enjoy it’s performance in unhooked freestyle as the kite goes forward nearly like a C shape.

Just give a shot to the GT and for sure you will enjoy his qualities.


Inflation System: Above Average – Single pump system
Control Bar: Excellent – Comfortable and easy to grab, one bar fits all sizes
Control Bar Acesories: Excellent – Easy to use depower strap
Safety System: Excellent – Simple and effective
Bridle: Excellent – Simple and resistant with multiple attachment points for noticeable difference. Color coded.
Stability: Excellent – Easy to fly and stable with almost no tendency to fly out of the wind window.
Power: Above Average – Generates smooth power.
Range: Above avarage- Very wide wind range
Turning: Excellent – Highly responsive , easy to steer.
Pop: Excellent – Provides huge yet controlled hang time
Bar Pressure: Above Average – Low bar pressure with a nice feel
Depower: Excellent – Lots of progressive on/off power adjustment within a short throw
Relaunch: Excellent – Quick and easy with almost no effort. The best we ever tried
Durability: Excellent – Excellent construction. Kevlar reinforcements. Very solid.
Kite Bag: Above Average – Big enough to fit the kite in. Easy to compact.
Overall performance: – Excellent.

Experiment with the bridle attachment points. There are noticeable performance differences to be gained.
To consciously appreciate qualities of the bar make sure you read all the information about ESP-system.

Pros: Very well build, fast, stable, very easy relaunch, power.
Cons: Only one color scheme and graphics.

You can visit Core Kites website to know more information and also to order the new Core GT.

Tested and approved by the Kitemovement Team.

One Comment »

  • Cobus says:

    I am one of the only guys in SA that flies CORE, and just want to say these kites are GREAT!!!! I actually like the one colour thing, it is almost like the old Ford moto, you can have any colour you like as long as it is yellow.

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