Loving this review of the 11’4 Elite by Tez from SUP M Inflatable.
Available online via our shop check this out. https://www.glasgowpaddleboardersco.co.uk/product-page/gladiator-11-4-elite
Get in touch too if you’d like a demo. I refer to this as “the perfect alrounder” or “instructors favourite from the range.”
Enjoy Tez’s thoughts.
Gladiator Elite 11’4 x 32” x 4.7”Review & pics: Tez Plavenieks – SUP M Inflatable
SUP manufacturing has come on leaps and bounds in the last few seasons. It’s now perfectly applicable to own an iSUP less than 6” thick. As long as it incorporates up to the minute materials and quality production techniques. It should also be noted that these ways of doing things don’t automatically add up to an astronomical price tag. A quality iSUP doesn’t need to break the bank, instead, delivering a fair cost. As is the case here with Gladiator’s 2022 Elite 11’4 compact touring SUP.
The phrase ‘touring SUP’ is a bit of a misnomer. Often conjuring up images of long miles in the saddle (or should that be with a paddle?). When actually a touring board for many will be what I’d describe as a performance all rounder.
For me, the style of board the Gladiator Elite 11’4 is will be perfect for any paddler starting out as well as progressing. Touring SUPs aren’t just elitist machines, regardless of the board’s namesake. Having rolled the Elite out it’s notable how well the board’s made. The minimal graphics make you take note of things like the triple rail edge, quality fibreglass fin, fixtures and fittings and overall board quality. It’s also nice to see a slightly different deck pad lay up which adds to the Elite’s aesthetic.
Lifting and carrying the 11’4 is lush. The board’s light so it’s easy to move around. This, however, can often translate to a corky nature on the water. Yet being slightly thinner it sinks a little more in the brine and gives a more planted feel than many iSUPs which float on top of it. This said it’s not a sinker, don’t get me wrong, it just does what it should.
Being 11’4 the Gladiator Elite has decent tracking and glide. Even with a strong tide pushing against me during testing it keeps its line and doesn’t deviate. This is good news for all paddlers, whatever your style, as it’ll need less corrective strokes to deliver you where you’re going.
Stability is good. Those riders looking to learn pivot turns will need to concentrate a little. But practicing moves aboard the Gladiator is perfectly doable.
As Gladiator say, if you’re a rider that wants to go anywhere and do a bit of everything you should really consider the Elite 11’4. And I concur. It’s a board for every paddler rather than being super specialist. And for the majority, this is a good thing.
For my money, if I was heading for a float with family, friends, doing a bit of moderate adventure paddling or surfing small waves then I’d definitely choose the Gladiator Elite 11’4. The board’s lightweight nature, yet with negatively impacting rigidity, makes this one of the main reasons. I’m all about efficiency, even with recreational paddling. Otherwise, it’s just no fun.
Tez Plavenieks – SUP M – Gladiator Elite 11’4 2022 Review