Late last summer, I was out taking a few laps at Orlando Watersports Complex when JD Webb rolled up with a crazy-looking board. As we all know, JD is an incredible rail rider and I’m pretty sure he could make a piece of plywood look good on the water, but he was absolutely crushing it on the new Hyperlite Union. After watching JD annihilate the park for a while, I convinced him to let me take it for a spin. From the second the carrier clicked through the motor tower, the Union became my new board of choice at the cable park.
Just a year out from introducing the innovative System boot and binding technology, Hyperlite has introduced what I think is its most ahead-of-its-time board since the Byerly Finless dropped back in 2000. The collaboratively designed and now collaboratively ridden Union was influenced most by Webb, Jimmy LaRiche, cable king Nick Davies and Hyperlite shaper Aaron Stumpf. Riding the Union, you get the feeling that the riders and shapers at Hyperlite have been spending quite a bit of time on the slopes during the offseason. As cliché as it sounds, the board is just buttery. It’s stiff enough that you don’t feel like you’re riding a noodle, yet flexible enough to get into some serious presses. Chalk that up to Hyperlite’s new Crossover Core, which combines its Nova and E-Core materials for a lightweight yet durable layup. The Union’s subtle channels make tracking into a kicker or a half-load ollie really solid. And don’t fret about it holding up to park-level abuse, because the R&D team up in Redmond built this thing out of some space-age jibber-jabber that makes it bullet proof.
Put simply, the Union is rock-and-roll. I feel like the new kid at school when I crank down the bindings, because everyone keeps asking me what’s up with it. If you ever see me on the dock and you’re wearing Systems, feel free to take it for a few laps. One thing’s for sure, you won’t be disappointed. Words: Rob Corum Photo: Bill Doster
2012 Hyperlite Union Wakeboard
Sizes: 138, 142 CM