Close to the heart of our engineering home waters - Geneva, Switzerland - Team TAAROA was proud to present the final version of the iUP at the Geneva Wind Festival, held September 23-26 on the meandering, rocky shoreline of Lac Leman. A lively and beautiful spot, the venue was loosely interfaced with the city, just east of the famous Jet d’Eau fountain, a 140-meter high spray of water constantly rising over the shoulder.
With the help of our energetic and well-organized host club, Tropical Corner, TAAROA was warmly welcomed at the Geneva Wind Fest. This year’s version was a multi-foil discipline, action-packed event, partnered up with the European Pro Freestyle Tour’s first foil freestyle European Championships.
Although the event was a bit frustrating for the freestyle competitors due to a lack of wind, our team took advantage of the glassy, clear conditions to showcase what our foils are capable of outside the conventional. Accompanied by local and professional riders, we spent hours towing testers of all levels up and down the lake, riding wake, carving, and surfing with the iUP.
Fast and stable, the iUP amazed riders with its magic carpet-like feel under tow. Once turned on and mounted to our easy-to-use Acme wing board, beginner riders were able to stand up, take off, and ride along next to the boat at a variety of different speeds. Advanced riders, even pro freestylers, took off, carved up and down, and rode the wake with a slack tow line just behind the boat.
Typical first-try reactions included, “Too cool!” on repeat, “Magic!” or simply, “Wow!” Indeed, the “Wow” factor of our new design was off the charts. The streamlined profile and more advanced center of effort of our reverse delta wing design let riders attain higher speeds while remaining totally stable. Most impressively, even pro riders enjoyed the feel of the iUP and were happy to test again and again.
The Geneva Wind Fest also gave Team TAAROA new inspiration for foil development. Hindered by the lack of wind, pro freestylers set themselves to learning and competing in short races in foil pumping. A foiling watersport growing rapidly in popularity on Swiss lakes, foil pumping is simple yet physically challenging. Riders launch themselves off a dock into a surfer stance on a slim board using only their momentum. A wide-profile foil mounted underneath, the rider then glides into dynamic pumping. Once the pumping action is equilibrated and under way, the rider can carve around and even jump using the dynamic rebound of the foil and board. In short, it’s an efficient and entertaining way to train when there is no wind!
With a few existing front wings and stabilizers already well adapted for wing pumping, TAAROA engineers and developers were already discussing pumping designs all evening with a knowing gleam in the eye. Undeniably, unique and great foils are just on the TAAROA horizon, specifically adapted for this unconventional and energetic new discipline.
The Geneva Wind Festival was an inspiring and welcoming event for all devotees of the hydrofoil, whether brands, riders, or the public. Drawing on this incredible energy, Team TAAROA is ready to continue to push the limits of foil engineering and design. Stay tuned for the future of TAAROA innovation!