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Bindings

Burton Cartel 2017-2018 Snowboard Bindings Review

The Burton Cartel, like the Mission and latterly the Malavita, is firmly established as one of the B’s true workhorses. Very little changes are made from year to year, and 2017/18 is no exception – but as long as we keep getting the trustworthy excellent Cartel we all know and love, that’s fine by us.

“It’s generally pretty stiff, so powerful riders will enjoy it more than tentative ones”

The single-piece highback remains, with a cored-out section for increased flex where you need it. It’s generally pretty stiff, like the binding as a whole, so powerful riders will enjoy it more than tentative ones.

Your boot is help in place by straps that are comfortable yet minimalist. As well as weight savings, the lack of bulky cushioning means that response is unencumbered, yet discomfort is still never an issue.

As you move your weight from the nose to the tail of the board and vice versa, the heelcup of the Burton Cartel actually rolls a little from side to side, giving you more movement. Over the course of the day this means you get less foot fatigue, and it’s also easier to load up for ollies (NB: this feature is found only on the EST version, which our tester reviewed. The one seen here is the Re:Flex version).

So no fancy new tricks, then, but that doesn’t stop the Burton Cartel being one of our all-time favourite snowboard bindings.

Tester’s Verdict

Andrew Duthie – whitelines.com

“I think I tried my first pair of Cartels in 2003. They were great then, and they’re great now; still a good balance of comfort, performance and price.

“A good balance of comfort, performance and price”

If you like to cruise then something like the Custom might suit you better, as this isn’t mega playful at slower speeds. It’s always comfortable, but really only comes into its own when you’re riding a bit more aggressively.

I rode both versions of the Cartel this year, and neither is a bad call. The hinge on the EST isn’t just a gimmick, though; if you own a Channel board, it’s worth getting that version – especially as it’s the same price.

The ankle strap is low-profile enough to give you instant feedback. I’m always surprised by how un-padded it is; it feels a lot more comfy than it looks!”

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