Monday, December 6, 2010

Nordica Conquer 2011

So last Friday I had the opportunity to demo the Nordia Conquer, an extremely powerful women's ski, in a 154.  I am glad that I started out the morning with the boys, driving hard to be the first to the bottom of our warmup on Great Northern.  It's always good to have a warmup run - especially popping the cherry on brand new demos!  And wow!  These skis just blew me away right from the start. 

There is no complaining about the construction of these extremely durable skis.  I could tell right from the start that these skis could put in season after season, even for a local skiing over 100 days a year.  Yes, they were a little bit heavy - probably due to the rediculous binding-ski combo for sale.  I will say, the removal of binding choice from the consumer is an extremely frustrating one.  Do ski corporations not trust us to purchase the binding that best fits our technique - or do they just want to guarantee the binding sale?  :(  Either way, the ski was extremely solid and slightly heavy - but in the East Coast crud, a heavy ski is always a benefit.

Check Out the Nordica Conquer 2011
at Basin Sports in Killington, Vermont

The solid construction and 84mm width made the Conquer an extremely sluggish initiator.  The ski would not lock into the next turn until about 20mm from the tip, making the edge to edge much longer!  However, if you are a jerky skier, I could see where this would help make a more graceful transition for those who don't roll their ankles, but as a dynamic skier I quicky found myself juicing the tails (which were appropriately stiff - not tossing me about) so that I could make a quicker edge transfer in the air.  I would have liked more input from the ski at an earlier point in the sidecut, so that I could have more control over my edge transfer. 

That said, I had an amazing run down Rime, riding the 14m radius from one treeline to the other, although this did mess with the primarily downhill skiing pattern of my buddies.  The ski itself had a really wonderful turn shape, with the tails really bringing the skier across the hill rather than merely switching edges while still pointed downhill.  It even wanted to do this in the moguls, which made this an extremely difficult all-mountain ski...East Fall ice moguls are not something that I really wanted to make long GS turns in.  When I did get the skis to point down the hill, they were definately unhappy and felt as though they were reluctant to participate, waiting instead for any opportunity to cross the trail. 

All in all, I am glad that I took this ski out in a 154m due to its big, beefy nature.  Even with my huge, powerful theighs that are usually most comfortable with a 160m, I couldn't see myself finding any comfort on anything longer.  This ski is definately designed for the larger, slow moving women who wants to travel fast on her skis.  You have to be strong to work with the ski, and pretty heavy to dominate it.  I kept thinking how perfect this ski would have been for groomed & crud terrain if I was just twenty pounds heavier.  Otherwise, these skis were so fast & sexy that I guess I'll just have to settle for skiing these on non-crowded midweek days - with a helmet  :)  Thanks Nordica for actually manufacturing a quality product that won't break down after 30 days on snow!!

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