YES Greats 2016-2017

UPDATE: Check out our review of the 2018/2019 YES Greats here

  • Price: £435
  • Sizes: 152, 154, 156, 158
  • Flex: 8
  • Profile: Hybrid Camber
  • Shape: Asymmetric Twin

It’s always been one of the highlights of the year to see who YES have chosen to honour with the latest incarnation of the YES Greats. Whether it’s for Albert Einstein, Marilyn Monroe or Noah Salasnek, their topsheet tributes always make this one of the winter’s most talked-about boards. This time, the snake is eating its own tail; Romain Di Marchi, DCP and JP Solberg are proclaiming that they’re “still UnInc”, and have paid graphical homage to the anything-goes collective of which they were key members while still at Burton.

The Yes Greats features an asymmetrical design, which this year has been made stiffer on the heels to extra carbon. It therefore has an asymmetrical flex, which YES reckon will perfectly compliment the different sizes of sidecut (for those unfamiliar with asym boards, the heel edge radius is shorter and deeper than the one on the toes, to better match your body’s mechanics).

“The asym sidecuts make even simple turns a joy, and the high-quality sintered base rockets over everything”

While that might sound like something best suited for a carver, the Greats is first and foremost a freestyle board. The mostly-poplar core is enhanced with both bamboo and paulownia, increasing its pop and lowering the overall weight. The profile is definitely park-friendly too; with rocker sections at each end that make it easier to press, while the camber between the feet comes in handy on park kickers and in the pipe.

Not that you can’t enjoy it on the pistes or in the pow, of course; the asym sidecuts make even simple turns a joy, and the high-quality sintered base rockets over everything. Those who couldn’t care less about tricks should perhaps choose something else, but park fiends may find that the YES YES Greats is the perfect weapon with which to explore other parts of the mountain when the lines are closed.

It’s unlikely the YES brand would ever have surfaced if it weren’t for the UnInc years, so it makes sense that they’d tip the cap in this way eventually. We’ll have to wait a while to see how they follow this, but until then enjoy the YES Greats in all its hoggy glory.

Tester’s Verdict

Matt Higson –

The latest incarnation of the YES Greats is truly something special! The asymmetric sidecut wasn’t something I noticed straight away but after jumping back onto a more traditional board I really missed it. Everything feels way more balanced, predictable and just more ‘right’ on this asym board.

“Don’t expect to have a gentle cruise; this is a freeride destroyer”

I was riding the YES Greats first thing in the morning when the piste was packed pretty hard, but it never skipped a beat. It was comfortable riding at any speed you wanted, and at no point did I feel it might bite or catch me out. It did have a stiffer and slightly more powerful flex than what I would traditionally ride, but that was no bad thing as it made me want to push and ride a bit harder!

It felt really balanced off the jumps in the park, and landings were really easy. You can see why this has been such a popular board amongst good riders over the years – these guys really know how to build a quality snowboard!

Trade Secrets

Alex Warburton –  Brand Director, YES

This year’s Greats features a collection of visual elements that made up some of our favourite UnInc graphics. Those brief but monumental years that DCP, JP, Romain, Jeffy and Gigi had creative freedom with that project are curated here in a single celebratory homage.

For the owners of YES., launching their own brand was in some ways an extension of UnInc – or what UnInc could have grown into. So when you understand that, you understand they really had no choice but to launch YES – simply riding for another brand post big-B was never an option.

On the technical end, the Greats is graced with the original asym-twin outline. Having a tighter sidecut on the heel than on the toe rebalances and enhances the body’s natural strengths, and this year we’ve gone a step further by adding a carbon stringer on the heel-side of the board. That effectively creates an asymmetrical flex, so the additional weight and power applied to your heel edge is now matched without overpowering your toe edge.

[monetizer101 search=’YES Greats’]

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Selected for The 2016/17 Snowboard 100

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