Best Roca 8m (V2 2017)

The Roca, the follow up of the Kahoona, fits much better in the Best line up being less far away from the TS as the Kahoona used to be. For beginners till intermediate level it is a very good kite. Both the performance and quality are as a you may expect from an major brand. Good to have for a kite school and certainly for an average twin tip rider. But the users must like a low bar pressure and the soft, though very rapid power on-off kite. It can get a nervous feeling though, especially in gusty winds.

Best Rocca 2017 V2
Best Roca 2017 V2

 

Best Roca

inflate Best Roca V2
inflate Best Roca V2

The Roca is the new entry kite in the Best kite line up. Mind you the TS, although marketed bij Best as the Do it all kite is more a performance kite than the do it all claim suggests. So the Roca may have a good chance filling up the gap to the TS.

The second version of the Roca has the same price as the V1, which starts off with a rough 10% win compared to most brands which did raise their prices. After saying goodbye to some major (all?) paid pro-riders, taking over the Iron heart safety system and some other small features from North (like the pulley and the stopper ball), Best seems to use much more its sensibility over image building. In the recent past not all Best safety systems did work properly, so using one which is proven to work is an example of Best’s safe and wise decision. The inflate is also changed in the 2017 (V2) version. It looks like any pump will fit, but this is not entirely true. We had a North pump which almost fitted, but seemed to miss out a few mm to properly fit. Best also removed the gummy triangle in V2 on the trailing edge which was present at the first version.

2 of the 4 battens on the Best Roca 2017

The three strutted Roca, with four battens, four lines, bridles with one pulley also has a pulley on the back lines. This is not very common, and the effect of it seems minimal in the middle setting. It does get a strange look when set on any other setting, and the pulley has no effect for sure anymore when you reset the back line to either more or less bar pressure.

Pulley on back line Best Rocca middle setting)
Pulley on back line Best Roca (middle setting)
Pulley on back line Best Rocca (heavy setting)
Pulley on back line Best Roca (heavy setting)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bar and lines

The RED Bar comes with 4 22m lines -of clearly tremendous quality; Each single line has the strength to carry the weight of about seven persons. – and has an elastic power cord near the clam cleat, which is height adjustable and comes with a stopper ball. Choosing for an elastic depower cord should prevent having a long piece of rope dangling around when setting the system in a depowered mode. For example the F-one  bar gave us some tricky moments in similar situations; pulling back the bar after a spin and 

It has a swivel below the bar with a single line safety connected to a power line, long enough to completely open up the kite and get the power totally out. But users must untwist the lines by hand with the swivel after a (kite)loop otherwise there is a chance the safety line will get stuck when used. Being -by the way- exactly the same at this point to a North Quad bar, the swivel doesn’t turn by itself like the Click bar does.

The test

The Roca did have a pretty hard time in our test. We had massive slamming gusting wind during one of our sessions. The Roca did not like that at all. For example swapping it to a North Dice 2017 at this point made it clear the Dice was more stable, although the Dice is already not a very gusty loving kite.  On the other hand the Roca is such a mellow kite, but it just got quite nervous in this situation.  

The bar pressure is very low and even on the heavy bar setting, the kite was still with little bar pressure and quite the same as the standard setting.  Its wind range is, especially on the low end side pretty good. And even when being overpowered the Roca will not get you heavily surprised. Therefore the pop and/or power comes, despite its short power/depower bar stroke, quick but quite soft. At this point we got reminded to the behaviour of a F-one Bandit (the Bandit being slightly more aggressive, but still quite friendly). It just tries to treat you nicely. Perfect for beginners or the less aggressive kiters (women?!) but for a freestyle session you will need another kite. Jumping with the Roca is quite easy, although it doesn’t send you right away to the moon (although there is an impressive 23.4m Woo jump height recorded with a Roca 2017) , it has a nice float in the air and is very predictable what you are going to get.

Best Rocca V2
Best Roca V2

Looping the kite takes an medium to big sized  circle and creates less but steadier power as most other kites. The typical Roca thing is -again- the predictable force you will get. The low bar pressure, the rapid on- off power in a  small bar stroke gives a mixture of a Carbinha FX and that of a F-one Bandit.

List Price

Best Roca 8m  V2 (kite only) $ 1,049 / 1099,- Euro

Best RED bar (including 4 22m lines +Micro leash) $ 459 / 459,- Euro

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4 thoughts on “Best Roca 8m (V2 2017)”

  1. Hi Lisa,
    Nice choice, nothing wrong with that.
    Beginners (and even more experienced) kiters will have a difficult time judging if any 2nd hand kite is a 100% okay (leak, repairs on the inside etc). In other words if you know the person/shop and the background who sells it, it may be a choice to go second hand. Usually a kite which is from 2 seasons back but new is also available for a bargain (but colours choice and sizes may be a problem).
    Dave
    We Test Kites

  2. I confess what got me “hooked” on the strength of rebel – I weigh 70 kg, was using a rebel 5 on Ceará and it just pulled me up and I knew exactly when to start

    I’m probably going to choose the union , because of future quiver matters . Although the pink bandit is quite cute 🙂

    Another time-old question : what you advise beginners, used kites or new kites ? My kite friend and I have this convo regularly – I’m on the buying new camp (or just demo), even if it’s not the most recent season, she’s of the used opinion (because she doesn’t want to spend a lot of money on something she’s going to abuse)

  3. Hi Lia,
    Thanks for asking.
    We have to admit this got us puzzled. Especially the “liking” of the Rebel. We guess you got addicted to its quite stable but straight forward power. A lot of (older) people like this kite, but to our opinion got them stuck into doing limited things. We are afraid any of the kites mentioned is going to be quite a change to you.
    Trying to advice a kite that will have some aspects of the Rebel feeling and still will get you something which will broaden your kite style a bit would be the North Evo.
    How ever if you are open into a quicker and more on and off kite the Bandit or Union could be a choice. Leave the Lithium, it will be only useful for about 6 months if you going to kite quite often.
    Hope it helps and have fun starting to get the hang of a great sport!
    Dave
    We Test Kites

  4. Hi,

    After reading your website what do you think would be best to buy as a 1st kite (i am a beginner – had classes, almost independent, need to train more) – F-One 2016/2017 Bandit 9m, Best Roca 2017 9m , Airush Union 2017 8m or Airush Lithium 2015 9 m?

    I had classes with North Rebel (surprisingly, i liked it a lot) and Neo (liked, not as much as Rebel), Cabrinha Switchblade (did not like it, depower range too long, couldn’t reach with my short arms) and Waimann Rabbit (meh)

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