UPDATE SEASON 2014-2015:
For season 2014-2015, the Atomic Redster Doubledeck GS has evolved completely. The sidecut and therefore the mold it was built from have changed. So we are talking about a complete new model. Click on the following link to read our Test / Review for the new Atomic Redster Doubledeck 3.0 GS.
The Atomic Redster Doubledeck GS is the Giant Slalom street version for the general public from the Austrian brand. Atomic were pioneers in incorporating a superimposed layer on their skis as stabilizers / dumping mechanisms. That second “layer”, that they call Doubledeck, has been recently incoporated in the brand’s desing schemes.
These kind of skis, specially those designed by generalist manufacturers like Atomic, are quite conservative. For example, when they are taken to high speeds. They don’t behave as good as the authentic GS models do. They also require empty slopes and very nice flat groomed terrain because any irregularity is absorbed worse. On the other hand, they are just perfect for those in the general public who are great skiers without competitive needs (although they are sporty skiers). At medium-high speeds, they are very good allies for our enjoyment, specially when we can hold on the edge while taking quite big angles at more than decent speeds.
The Atomic Redster Doubledeck GS feels solid and stable in all “legal” speeds on the piste. Therefore, it is a more than recommendable model for those ski instruction professionals who desire something comfortable to develop their jobs, as it is also for those expert skiers willing to take classes from the former. The theorical 18m radius in the 174cm length size can give us some idea of its behaviour, but the key point here is its inherent flexion capacity, which will let us round our turns and reduce the radius to unsuspected limits. On perfectly groomed slopes we will link short clean cut turns quite easily. Although this is not a ski designed with this in mind, it won’t hinder our path in any way. If we increase the radius, we will find out that the medium size is where this ski really shines. This is its favourite terrain. The only negative point will be found in the wide open turns, where it is somehow easy to feel a slight tendency of rounding the turn and therefore reducing the radius a bit, as well as the speed.
Out of the trails it is quite impressive too, keeping in mind this is a race carver. It is probable that its low radius plus its good terrain adaptation capacity are the reasons behind it being so easy to turn in non groomed terrain. Its adequate reactivity plays a very important role here. If it feels nice and noble on the trails, here this characteristic is even more noticeable. That said, we shouldn’t think we can push the envelope in this kind of terrain because, with high levels of inertia, it won’t forbid those sudden adjusments.
In bumps, the Redster Doubledeck GS feels agile and it’s easy to pivot, although we must consider how big the shovels are, because if we ski with our legs too tight, one tip can get in the way of the other, specially while climbing to the top of the bump. Although there is a good balance between its reactivity and terrain’s adaptation, here it feels a bit harsh and demanding. So we’d better watch out and take our best bump technique for a walk if we don’t want to end up sitting backwards and being spitted out from bump to bump.
One remarkable characteristic that calls our attention is how easy is to release the edge from a cut turn to a slided one. We’ll be thankful for this when the snow conditions are not good at all. Or when we are the ones not doing any good, because this ski will help us on those circumstances, even leaving unnoticed some of our mistakes.
Speaking aesthetically, the racing design and the blood red colour are the “master design lines” that characterize all the Race range in Atomic’s catalogue. In this particular model we will see the second layer on the top covering a good portion of the tip and tail. Being it evident, it doesn’t feel shrill as it happens with some models from other brands. The problem with this overlapped element comes with the screws to fix it on top. They are adjustable in order to stiffen or soften the ski’s reactions (that’s the brand’s claim), but you’d better watch out and make sure you don’t leave them too open and lose them. Some people have already had some trouble with that.
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This post is also available in Versión en Español.