^^^^ A few places (Ski Canada, Real Skiers, several Euro sites) still hang in there with reviews that include rec racers. That late lamented Canadian online mag, cannot recall it's name, had the most reviews of carvers, rec racers, even WC models, along with all other width ranges, but it went under years ago.
The funny thing, of course, is that the review bias - and a corresponding bias in city big box ski stores - isn't all that noticeable in slope-side ski stores I walk into. Nor on the mountains I ski. Sorta like Epic; western skiers define the sport, but eastern skiers make up the bulk of the demographic.
Which raises a paradox: Many here define narrow skis as yesterday's technology. Tougher to ski, less reward, overly specialized. And definitely not cool. Advertising and reviews would seem to back up this premise. But then we also know that there are more skiers, buying more tickets, in parts of the U.S. that do not get fat-ski snow, than there are in the west. And that there are far more skiers in the U.S. who never leave lift-served groomers than those who do. And that most ski makers, by pairs made, are still located in Europe. Where the public hasn't quite embraced fat skis as we have. Nor has the snow cooperated. People there still think 80mm is a decent touring width, y'know.
So isn't it most likely that the fat skis are less about modern technology or where we ski, and more about advertising gambits? Let's assume that the sales of narrow skis are stable, predictable, and highly dependent on local conditions where people ski. So where's the growth? We'd call that a mature market. Not even flat, perhaps, because each year more ski resorts close, and those that close are likely to be smaller places dependent on natural snow. Fewer sites may be balanced by more new skiers, or so the articles say.
What to do? What about creating new demand for a new product? Think about SUV's. Is the technology appropriate for the conditions they'll face? Most never leave the blacktop. Definitely not for "sports," if that means offroad. I'm told that the largest, beefiest, most masculine models are favored by soccer moms, actually. A generation ago we had minivans, generations before that we had station wagons. Now we have SUV's that men can feel gender-secure owning. And increasingly, the bodies are scaled up cars instead of scaled down trucks. So they're a slight of hand, a simulacrum of a narrative about lifestyle that we don't actually have and never did. But we want to be part of that narrative.
Aren't wide skis also part of a narrative? (And to forestall the predictable, I have a 122 on order, and a 116 and a 105 and two 98's with me at the moment, so maybe hold off on the "you don't get it" comments.) Let's say fats are commentaries on how we want terrain and snow to be, how we imagine ourselves. On those 10% of the days we actually ski in the west and the 2% back here. So we learn to enjoy them in conditions other than what they're optimized for, and we feel as if, "hey, see, this is who I am, this is what skiing is all about!" Also, over time, like SUV's, they become re-optimized. More fats are stiffer, resist lateral torsion, deeper sidecuts, and rocker that's more about ease of turning than float in 24" of snow. Lo and behold, they're scaled up cars, not scaled down trucks. Of course, they have a giant carbon footprint, and they require the entire garage, but they crush that supermarket parking lot, even as we fantasize about how they'd handle the next apocalypse.
Thus we obediently redefine our needs, embrace "new tech," even as the needs pretty much remain the same and the tech requires more tradeoffs for the real world in which it's used...