Pros: very easy to skid/ smear the ski, good quality in powder and trees. Forgiving
Cons: Very easy to skid/smear the ski, bad quality on hard snow. Not a precise ski. poor edge grip compared to something like Kendo.
Salomon Sentinel 170 cm (129,95,121mm; R17.8m):
Ski Review by Faripour Forouhar March 2011
I am 5’8’’, 145lb, level 9 and higher, moderately aggressive skier. Spend 65% of my time off piste (back side) and 35% on piste (front side) on the groomers and bumps. My present skis are Volkl Mantra (177, 4 yrs old 130/94/116) mostly for west and Blizzard Magnum 8.7 (174, 128/87/113) for east coast skiing. I also use racing slalom and GS skies (volkl) and Rossi bump skis, on occasion.
Last week I demoed three pair of skis in Snow Mass. Co., Volkl Kendo (170cm, 127/88/109mm; R19.9), Salomon Sentinel (170cm- 129, 95,121mm) and KastleMX 88, 168cm length (128,88,113mm; R17.5m). I skied each pair for approximately 2 hours and did exactly the same thing with all three: starting with groomers, then wind packed crud, then frozen chunky crud, then steep densely packed large bumps with zipper lines of descend and then super steep EX-EX tree runs off Sheer Bliss lift to the right. Below is the results of my experience:
They are really up to something with rockers. These skis are slightly rockered in the shovel area and have flat squared conventional tail. The immediate feeling was as though I had a block of wet soap under my feet. They felt very slipper. Very very easy to skid/smear it around in any direction at any moment. I had heard that rockers don’t catch edges, it is true! I couldn’t make the edges catch regardless of how or in what direction I projected my core, at any part of the turn. To me this adds to "forgiving" quality of technical mistakes – something that skis like Mantra, Kendo, Kastle and Blizz won’t forgive. They were superb in bumps: very suitable flex; they felt somewhat like my Rossignol bump skis in their flex pattern but much slower edge to edge - more like Mantra (with comparable width). In bumps, they felt slightly heavier (95 under the foot rather than 88) and slower edge to edge compared to Kendo but lighter and more flexible compared to Kastle. In crud, they have a surfy feeling and are forgiving (no catching edges in wind packed crud!) as opposed to “cutting like a knife” feeling of Kendo, Mantra or Blizz. which I am used to and enjoy. I am sure they would be superior to all the above in deep pow and trees especially if the space between them were filled with cut up snow and irregular bumps which in the west, they often are. On the groomers they function with ease with a bit of slipper feeling, even on what I would call packed powder in Snow Mass let aside the icy conditions of the East. For reasons not clear to me I felt they worked better for me, if I kept my skis close to each other and weighed the skis more evenly. Any turn radius was fine and you did not seem to need to load the shovels much to start the turn because they would slip into the turn with slightest persuasion, perhaps too easily to the point that you might have to adjust back. In short, these skis slip and slide, forgive your technical mistakes and off balance moves and get you where you want, safely. However, they are not precision tools like Kendo. You got to try them!