I paddled a 54 all summer and got into a 58 for about a month in the spring and thought it was one of the best boats I’ve ever paddled. Maybe the best Garb boat ever…
The 54 is great but anyone over 170lbs or anyone trying combo moves will bury the stern a lot landing backwards. The 58 doesn’t have this problem and the edge is slightly softer to make it a little easier to control on a violent fast feature.
Last fall a member of the Canadian National team (note: no national team paddlers are on team Riot) told me he thought the astro was amazing and definitely produced the biggest bounces he had ever experienced.
They got this one right, everything but the thigh braces, what a joke they may as well not even be there. Oh well at least they’re better than those silly synergy braces they had that used to move around.
I paddled that Astro 54 last summer, and the boat was fine – obviously faster and looser then my old boat – it was comfy even at my (our) size. The outfitting was kinda weird, I didn’t even put the thighbraces in, just used the deck of the boat as a brace – seat was easy to adjust though. I would imagine the 58 would be just right. I would have picked one up last fall, it just didn’t work out to get it.
Again, the boat was fast – not as fast as the orbit fish though.