STARBOARD SPICE 9’3 LIMITED SERIES TEST REVIEW
This big, deluxe Spice is built for comfort, and apparently, speed. It comes in sizes from 6’9 up to the generous 9’3. We loved the practical handling in between waves, ideal for wind-drive swells, and the power-surfing potential with the tremendous wave holding and release. The Spice will expand your surfing range into the borderline days, and your grin at the same time.
Our Spice came in Limited Series construction; clean and contemporary yet with extra ding resistance.
This board carries a buffed-up shortboard template; a purposeful pointy nose and rounded tail but with a bit more forward width for wave-grabbing. You see more of this in the side profile; the Spice carries plenty of volume up to the nose and sheds volume from behind the mid-point to the tail.
Underneath, the downturned rail with bevel is a standout feature. Just back from the nose, the bevel gives way to a constant concave that runs down the length of the board before splitting double concave in which both sets of side fins sit. A slight Vee rises between these concaves, in which the US centre fin box sits.
The rails remain noticeably rounded till the front two fins where they sharpen right up. The tail itself is rounded and reasonably thick in profile.
The Spice comes with a quad set-up of Bio resin fins, a deep ledge handle (great in wind and with suncream on hands), and a hex-cut diamond groove deck pad. This gives way to a softer section before reverting to diamond groove tail pad with centre arch and tail kick.
The Spice is an all-new wave range that gives you incredible rail carving, impressive speed through sections and instant drive out of turns.
The design brief focused on offering more performance and progression than the Wedge, while being more user-friendly and forgiving than the Pro. The all-wave performance of the Spice allows it to handle a range of conditions, from small beach breaks to overhead point breaks.
The 9’3″ is the biggest in the range, designed to be the most stable option for heavier riders between 100-130 kg. The length glides easily when catching waves and gives you good speed to quickly paddle back out to catch another ride. This board gives you an ultra-stable ride.
We rode the Spice in pitchy wind-driven swells. Immediately on take-off, the soft, rounded rail at the midpoint gives great hold when knifing into a steeper face. On less critical take-offs, this characteristic lets you lean in hard and draw out a big energy-storing bottom turn. The Spice’s strong hold on the water remains till you step back onto that sharp tail and break out for a snappy top turn.
When you’re chasing down the line, the softer rails create a smooth rolling rail to rail transition feel rather than the bouncy jerkiness that sharp rails can. This makes for some sweet speed generation by compressing and unweighting the deck.
The deck itself has a gentle dome. This gives good feedback as to foot position and while thinning rails.
Volume: 153 litres
Fins: 2x 4.5”, 2x 4.7”, 1x US Centre