Slingshot 2023 Wing Preview
Retail Buyers Guide: Wing 2023 Retail Buyer‘s Guide
Interviewee: Wyatt Miller, Brand Manager Wind/Wing
What are the main trends in wing foiling, in terms of riding styles?
The most popular riding style and the goal of most incoming participants is to be able to ride downwind pumping from swell to swell while luffing the wing. We are seeing the emergence of more and more youth in the sport pushig freestye to new heights.
What customer profile is driving more product demand at the moment (newcomers/experienced, kite/wind riders/exclusive wingfoilers)?
The majority of the customers are coming over from existing windsports at the moment. We are still in the “Early Adopter” phase of the sport. We hope to see the growth of what we call the “Early Majority” which is new people coming to the sport from outside the windsports regulars.
In what market section do you expect the biggest growth?
We still expect the biggest growth for the next 1-2 years to come from people who are already involved in windsports or already have family and friends who are active participants in windsports. We hope that by offering gear tailored to onboarding completely new people at an attractive price point that we should see more people jumping into winging as their first wind sport.
How popular are and will become land variants of the sport?
While we are seeing some fun videos of land winging, it had really yet to be established as a legitimate sport. It was not until Jeffrey Spencer landed the first backflip on water that wingfoiling was fully recognized as a legitimate sport.
Which of your wings are selling well and why?
We are still in the early adopter phase of the sport so it is the all around wings like our Slingwing V3 that are selling most. The wings marketed at jumping, speed and tricks like our Dart have been catching on slower. People really just want to progress to sufficient riding now. But we expect to see pricepoint wings like our Blaster getting more popular and helping non-windsports people to make the jump into the sport.
How many wing designs will you offer this year.
We will offer 4 wing designs this year.
What are the main trends in Wing construction, materials and design that the industry is progressing towards?
High tech materials caple of handling higher pressure and allowing for the reduction in LE and Strut sizes are what the industry is progressing to. They are having greater performance effect on wings than they are on kite since the wing is not supported by a bridle like a kite is. New window materials will be the next advancement. The current PVC and TPU used for windows is too stretchy and heavy and limit performance.
What materials and construction techniques are you using this year? Will you launch any innovations for 2023?
Sure but we can’t give that away yet.
How are you supporting retailers to sell this category?
We are launching our Difinitive Guide to Wing Foiling here shortly that offers all the basic info people are looking for who are thinking of joining the sport. This will be followed by an incredibly indepth Foil Academy instructional video program.
Have you suffered any stock or delivery issues due to supply chain bottlenecks? If so, what solutions have you implemented?
Everyone has.Lead times are simply much longer than they used to be. Buying material and plastic parts in large quantities wellin advance has helped protect agains major issues. One problem we see is customers looking at our website and seeing products out of stock and not realizing that the retailers are flush with stock. New web graphics and dealer locators help point customers who are usuing our website as a catelog, in the direction of where to make their purchase.