Point and Shoot

Rossignol Zenith Z9, Fischer World Cup RC, and Salomon X-Wing Tornado

From top: Rossignol Zenith Z9, Fischer World Cup RC, and Salomon X-Wing Tornado     Photo: David Clugston

Carving
Rossignol Zenith Z9
Sidecut: 126/74/105
The Z9's are kind of like performance-enhancing drugs you're going to go a lot faster, but you can't really take credit. Part of that is due to Rossi's new Twin Pulsion2 binding interface, which utilizes two raised ribs underfoot to boost power distribution to the edges for quick initiation and smooth exit. And with titanium-and-fiberglass laminate for added stiffness and pop and a wider waist than with most carving skis, the Z9's feel so stable that you'll find yourself skiing more confidently and aggressively than you ever have. $1,099 (with bindings); rossignol.com

Carving
Fischer World Cup RC
Sidecut: 112/66/96
Don't let the name scare you. While these skis were designed to arc proficient high-speed turns on Olympic-slick ice sheets, you don't need to be a racer to make them go. Fischer's new FlowFlex plate system allows the skis to bend independently of the bindings, making for virtually effortless turns and a surprisingly solid sensation underfoot. No chatter here. While the World Cups feel most at home on the groomers, they performed as well on hard snow as they did on fresh corduroy, even at slower speeds and on the flats. "I feel like a World Cup racer on these," exclaims Meyer, who spends most of his time hucking cliffs. "They're very confidence-inducing." $1,225 (with bindings); fischerskis.com

All-Mountain
Salomon X-Wing Tornado
Sidecut: 124/75/107
Though the new school may sneer at any skis that don't mimic the size and shape of an aircraft carrier, there's still something to be said for the easy-turning profile of a good sidecut, even in all-mountain planks. "The Tornado has a nice, yummy flex in a ski that's solid, springy, and powerful," says Dyer. That feeling is no accident. Salomon's integrated Z binding allows the wood-core skis to flex naturally, and also sits flatter than most bindings, providing a more balanced feel. Most important, though, is the deep sidecut, which allowed the testers to snap off turns of all shapes on the steeps and flats without losing speed. Plus the Tornado dominated crud and moguls. $1,100 (with bindings); salomonski.com

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