The second life of the Slingwing

April 20, 2019 | Kiteboarding
Slingwing: the single-strut inflatable sail by Slingshot | Photo: Slingshot

The inventor of the Slingwing says that the new product by Slingshot was not designed to replace windsurfing or kitesurfing.

The origins of wing surfing date back to the mid-1980s, when Tom Magruder invented the Wind Weapon and rode it in the Columbia River Gorge.

More recently, snow windsurfers used portable sails to glide across frozen lakes.

Tony Logosz, the head of R&D at Slingshot, is clear about the wing surfing - or, if you prefer, wing foiling - solution.

"You may not sail as fast, jump as high, or hit the lip as hard. However, there is beauty in the simplicity and enough potential in the performance and accessibility," notes Logosz.

"The thrill-to-safety ratio is really high. This makes it an absolute blast and a great addition, compliment and/or alternative to these awesome foiling sports."

The Slingwing is not new. It was originally developed in 2011 but, according to Slingshot, it was ahead of its time.

"We knew it was a cool idea, but it wasn't until the evolution of foiling - and more specifically the development of big performance foil wings with tons of lift and speed - that we saw a practical application for the creation," adds the master kite designer.

From Prototype to Potential Market Hit

In 2015, Tony Logosz took the early prototypes out of the closet and tested them with one of the larger foils he was developing.

The trials surprised him - Logosz was up and foiling instantly and able to cut upwind, cruise downwind and ride swell for the first time without the aid of a standard windsurfing sail or kite.

Four years later, and a couple of weeks after Robby Naish revealed the Wing-Surfer, Slingwing was publicly announced.

Both hand-held sails for foil boards target the same audience with identical features.

Slingshot sells Slingwing as a new entry-level sailing discipline tool that requires few skills when compared to kitesurfing and windsurfing. And is also easier to rig.

The water sports company notes that the wing is an excellent introductory tool to wind sports because it's lightweight, inflatable, and straightforward to learn.

The single-strut inflatable wing floats and is also easy to store. It can be used and enjoyed by people who have never kited or windsurfed.

Stand-up paddleboarders and wakesurfing enthusiasts will get into it quickly and effortlessly.

Slingwing hits the market by summer 2019.

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