TOP TRENDS | SNOWBOARD RENTAL
▲ FLOW RHYTHM
▼ BURTON PROCESS EXPERIENCE
▲ HEAD WOMEN'S BOA FOCUS
▲ ROSSIGNOL EXP
▼ HEAD ROCKA 4D SPEEDDISC
▲ FLOW RENTAL FUSION MESH
Brands are also aiming for ease of use with bindings. Elan is launching a new rear-entry binding, called Fastec. Irwin says it will be easier to use, perform well, and reduce wear and tear on boots. Flow’s Evolve rental bindings come in one-piece PowerStrap and two-strap versions, and are symmetrical, making it easy to store, set up and switch between goofy/ regular. “With our Evolve Fusion and Evolve two-strap bindings, we cater to both the end user who prefers speedentry and comfort, and the more traditional two-strap end-user,” says product manager Lucien Vink.
In women’s-specific rental product, Head will present a new boot for 2016 with a double BOA closure system, with independent closures above and below the ankle. “We will also launch a ladies-specific snowboard, Libra. Libra snowboards have specific flex and torsional characteristics designed for ladies and employ the Head Liquid Framewall technology,” Poole says. “We feel that ladies-specific products are the most important trend in rental products.” Suppliers continue to bolster youth products. The kids market has been a particular focus for Burton. For 201617 the company debuts the Handle Bar, which mounts
For an overview of the rental market, stop by Rental World/Backshop in booth #4501. On Saturday, sit in on the seminar "Practical Magic: The 5-Minute Rental Fit (Ski and Snowboard)" from 9:30-10:30 a.m. onto Burton Kids’ boards. Kids can hold on to the bar for balance, but step off if need be. Never Summer will offer its youth boards, the Yutes, down to 80 cm. Head Snowboards will offer a full kids snowboard package that includes boards sized from 70 to 110 cm, an XXS snowboard binding and a new junior snowboard boot, the 400 BOA/lace. This will be sized from 18.5 to 25.5 and reinforced in both the toe and heel. With beginner programs increasingly focused on terrain-based teaching parks, Elan focuses on designs for kids and adults that are more flexible at slow speeds. Rossignol, which has partnered with Snow Operating LLC and its Terrain Based Learning program, offers the only rental line with Magne-Traction technology. “Beginners will definitely find more stability and edge grip than
with a traditional edge,” says Castagnoli, of the EXP Mag board, Rossi’s more progressive rental option.
PRICE BATTLES AND RENTAL CHALLENGES
Many suppliers continue to offer a low-price point fleet board, but some argue that a more expensive board can be a better value. “The best constructions and newer technology will cost slightly more, but the snowboard will last longer and ride better,” Irwin says. Burton's Shaun Cattanach echoes that. “Find a partner who is committed to helping you make the experience the best it can be for your guests, not just someone looking to make a quick sale,” he says. “Cheap prices don’t always mean the guest experience will be good.” —Dave Zook
WE RECOGNIZE DEMAND FOR HIGHER TECHNOLOGY.
SNOW SHOW DAILY 2016 | DAY 1 SIAsnowshow.com