Type: River Runner
My last 4 boats have been a Riot Nitro, Jackson Superfun, 4Fun and prior to those a Booster 60. The Riots have much better hull speed than the Jacksons and the lower knee position is more comfortable for me personally. I wanted something more playfull than the Booster initiatlly and the Jackson 4Fun was better at releasing for a spin, but the loss in hull speed was a definate tradeoff. The Nitro is an excellent compromise between the Booster and the 4Fun, as the hull speed is still there, as well as better spins and play. The 4Fun didn't float me as well as the Nitro. The Superfun is pretty much a slow river runner at 200 lbs, similar to an EZ. However it will spin and surfs well, without pearling. The Booster 60 isn't much different other than the faster speed and greater tendency to pearl. That being said I am predominately a class 3 boater, with an occasional 4. I weigh 205+, plus gear, and have a 34" inseam with size 12 feet. The Nitro would be a great all around river/play boat for me if my legs/feet would let me get comfortably one notch farther forward in the boat(footblock has been removed). I just get to much stern grabiness on eddylines/swirly water. Hence I will be switching back to the booster 60 soon. If the Nitro had a slower, non-pintail stern, I think it would be much easier to handle. However, that's not Riots gig for most boats. In comparison playboats from most other maufacturers do have squared of end to the tail (Allstar, ZG, 4:20, etc). I have put on about 10 lbs. since I was in a booster 60 so hopefully the play will improve, when I switch back. The booster rocks for down river play for us mere mortals. Busts wave/holes, rolls easily, good stability, great ferry speed. The only real drawback if you can handle the nitro is the narrow cockpit. It sucks for getting out of the boat on precarious river ledges. Same deal with the Booster. If you are good at maintaining a constant aggresive paddling position the Nitro is great for river/play. Otherwise it is a nervous playboat you have to try and nurse between playspots.