Snowboard Review: 09-10 Never Summer Premier F1-R

29 Aug, 2009

Location: Steamboat, Colorado

Snow Conditions: Majority of powder days with the Premier, from 13+ inches of powder to freshly groomed groomers after the snow storm.

Setup: I rode the Never Summer Premier F1-R with Union Forces/Rome Shifts and my Rome Vamps size 8.

First Impression: The Premier F1-R makes the pow just that much better.

Size: 157cm

Weight: Average

Flex: The premier is definitely a stiffer flex than the lotus and with the carbon fiber V’s in the nose and tail gives it the stable ride that it has become. Between the binding it’s a tad softer which makes it torsionally easier to flex than previous years. Softer nose for float, stiffer tail…it’s a multi flex variety going on with the premier but it suits the ride it has become. RC Technology if you aren’t familiar with it, features rocker between the bindings and then camber outside of the bindings.

Turning: Despite the wider waist with than I need, I still get quick response from edge to edge on the premier ever since I stepped on it and with the R now added to the name, the reverse camber/camber still allows it to be a freeride board without being washy or less aggressive than before but now it’s less catchy if you happen to hard carve, you won’t catch that edge. I took it into the trees to test the quickness and response and between the sidecut and effective edge, you have a board that can handles the short quicker turns and the longer drawn out turns on the mountain.

Stable: The premier F1-R has always been a stable board, super damp which helps it absorb any bumpy/choppy riding conditions and less feel underfoot through them. It’s fast, stiffer and able to just charge with. Vario grip gives it a better edgehold with more contact points for the icy/hardpacked days but luckily for me it was mostly powder riding on the Premier F1-R.

Powder: Typically I ride the women’s premier (lotus) but in the deeper heavier snow having the stiffer tad wider premier F1-R helped a lot when it came to floating better and stability. I was able to ride the premier on 12+ powder days including a video of me riding through the tress on the premier. One of my favorite videos of the season shows the POV of riding the premier as well. The reverse camber definitely helped on the powder days , staying afloat without losing control when it came to groomers for the rest of the riding I had with it.

Pop: I only played with the premier on the groomers and in powder, I didn’t take it into the park but I watched a friend take it into the park after me boardsliding rails and watched it handle the pipe for him. Just like the Lotus it can handle park if you go in every now and then, but definitely a more freeride board.

Switch: I’m very used to the premier F1-R in terms of the flex and shape of the board, so riding switch with is doable but not easy like a true twin. That being said it’s still a freeride board , directional and the flex is different.

Overall Impression: It was great to spend more pow days on this board with the switch to RC Technology, it’s still that freeride board that charges but now it’s got extra float and a tad more fun than before. It’s perfect for the freerider who might dive into the park every now and then, but still rally’s up the mountain on edge.

Shay’s Honesty Box: I rode the premier F1 and the Lotus in my size, 157cm that I would ride all mountain and I will continue to ride the Lotus since it suits me better but having the premier on a powder day did make it just a notch above because it was stiffer and wider, it had better float through the powder but the Lotus still holds up and I’ll continue to ride the Lotus unless my feet grow bigger.  Between last years Premier F1 and this years Premier F1-R, it just gives it the upper hand in powder and with a bit more quirkyness for those park sessions.

Ready to buy? Head over to evo for the 2011 version of the Never Summer Premier F1-R or shop their full line of Never Summer snowboards

On-snow Photos

Never Summer Premier F1-R description

About the author


From the beginning of time, I was Shannon. From the beginning of snowboarding, I was Shay. From the beginning of online communities, I was Shayboarder. In the end, I’m the writer, photographer, editor, publisher, guru of sorts, product tester, curvy girl, and most importantly the snowboarder behind it all. Follow me on this journey through snowboarding, mountain biking, traveling and fun experiences!

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  1. August 30, 2009

    Great i was waiting for this one!

  2. Francis
    August 30, 2009

    Hi Shay,

    Can you make a comparaison between the Lib Lando Pro Model and Premier F1-R?

    I think they probably suit about the same?

  3. August 30, 2009

    Francis, both are really stable charging boards with handling conditions, the flexes are different but both on the stiffer side. The rocker is different, lib’s banana tech vs ns’s RC technology (camber rocker).

  4. Mike
    August 30, 2009

    Hi Shay,

    I used to ride a Heritage and really liked it. I ultimately switched to the F1 Premier because it could hold a carve better at speed and was much more stable when landing jumps. Its a serious, hard chargin board though and I kinda miss the playfullness of the Heritage some times, especially in tight trees. Is the new F1-R more playfull than last years F1? If so, is it still stable enough for hard, fast carving and also landing jumps and basic half pipe work?


  5. ghostovan
    August 31, 2009

    Yay! Thanks for review, Shay! Btw, your vids are so sweet.. fresh pow.. lots.

    Am I right in conclusion that Premier F1R plus EvoR will meet all common rider wishes and handle any condition he could ever face with? *just dreaming*=)

  6. September 03, 2009

    Awesome review Shay! We couldn’t have said it better.

    For those readers that are interested in riding the Premier F1-R or any of the other boards in the NeverSummer fleet, be sure to come and check out our demo days across the Rockies. You’ll be glad you did!

    Loveland Ski Area, CO November 14, 15, 18, 19

    Copper Mtn, CO November 21, 22**

    Keystone, CO December 5, 6

    Brighton, UT December 11, 13

    Canyons, UT December 12**

    Aspen Highlands, CO December 18**

    Ski Sunlight, CO December 19

    Telluride, CO December 19

    Durango Mtn Resort, CO December 20

    Snowmass, CO December 20**

    Echo Mtn, CO December 30

    Taos, NM Jan 2,3**

    **These dates so marked are tentative**

    Check out http://WWW.NEVERSUMMER.COM for updated schedule and added dates!

  7. September 04, 2009

    Hey Mike,

    I take my Lotus everywhere and same with the Premier F1-R when I had it, the RC helps it be a bit more playful but still the freeride machine that it is. But yeah the board was with me in the park and pipe, plus freeriding the mountain and trees.

    Ghost, thanks! Those helmet cam days are the best and some awesome powder days in steamboat to enjoy. I have the lotus and evo as my two main boards during the season right now. So definitely doable.

    Thanks Vince for the demo days, always worth checking out.

  8. Mike
    September 04, 2009

    Thanks Shay. I’ll demo the F1-R at Copper this year for sure. Wasn’t into the SL-R I tried last year as it was just too soft for me. Looking forward to trying the F1-R though. Maybe I’ll see you around the NS tent again. We can make some turns.


  9. September 04, 2009

    I’m in the same boat as you, I enjoy riding the infinity or Sl but I don’t ride it as my everything board, the lotus/premier is that just because of the stiffer flex but I can still play with it when I need to. Definitely try it out and see if it’s for you.

    Definitely I should be there so you’ll see me again and we can make turns this year!

  10. David (aka Kimchi)
    September 06, 2009

    Awesome read up. I think I’m going to get a chance to jump on this stick, as well as a few other Never Summers this season. I’m looking forward to it.

  11. Gus
    September 07, 2009

    I’m planning to get this board but not sure which size (159 or 161cm) to get. I’m 180lb with size 10 feet. Usually go riding on groomers but will occasionally ride on tabletops. Any suggestions? Thanks

  12. gags
    September 07, 2009

    if you can demo it will really answer your question….2cm is small, but it can make a big difference in feel to some people. Both boards will fit your feet and weight…..I’m 190# size 10 and i ride the SL R 158 as my everything board unless I’m in super deep pow, but I’ve gone to more softer boards in recent years…..if you want to go mach 10 a longer board is better, if maunverability (esp in trees) is more important ride a shorter one. This probably did not help, but you are the only one who can make the right choice for yourself.

  13. Pat
    September 23, 2009

    Hey Shay,

    Rad review…its really helped solidify my decision to get this board for my new back country stick.

    The only hang up I have is whether or not to get last year’s model or the new f1-r. The last thing you said in your review compared the two, but I wasn’t exactly clear on which board you said was better than the other. Is it the f1 from 08-09 or the new 09-10 f1 R?

    I’ll mostly be using this board for back country riding with a few groomers here and there.

    Thanks again!


  14. September 24, 2009

    Hey Pat,

    Awesome to hear. I would go for the F1-R over the F1, the reverse camber will help in powder. I prefered the F1-R when it came to powder. In the review I put the new 09-10 F1 has the upper hand against last years.

    Hope that helps!

  15. Harry Kinney
    September 28, 2009

    Great review. I’m torn right now. I can get an 09′ Premier F1 168 at my local shop for $300. Is the new F1 stiffer, or softer than last years. I know Rocker is the trend right now, but I don’t play in powder, I destroy it. I don’t butter, and I don’t ride switch ever. I like a really stiff board. I’m 5’10” 160lbs, but I haven’t ridden a board shorter than 164 in the last 10 years. I live in Jackson, and ride 60+ days a year. I do not ride park at all. Only big freeride lines, then chop, and groomers to get back to the lifts. My riding style does not involve much turning at all; I like to point it. I like to go as fast as possible, and toast most skiers. Should I go for the 09′ or spend the extra $200 for the F1-R? I bought a Supermodel 168 last year and hated it because the soft flex made it hard for me to stomp my landings on drops over 20 feet. My other current boards are a much older 173 Supermodel, a 164 Burton Triumph, and a 164 Arbor Abacus, but these are all basically rock boards now.

  16. October 01, 2009

    Harry, Honestly I wouldn’t go for the premier F1-R or F1 for you…I’d go straight to the Titan if you want the charging beast, to point it straight, handle chop and not be a soft flex in any way shape or form. Unity Dominion would be another choice as well.

    I don’t think you’d be happy on the Premier F1-R or F1, just my first thoughts after reading what you put.

  17. Will
    October 02, 2009

    Amazing review, I truly think it is helping me in making my decision on which board to take. I’m still not quite sure though. I am heavily debating between the Titan TX or the F1-R… I really enjoy bombing down runs, cutting through anything, but then again, I also like going through the occasional tight tree line and/or mogul fields. Is the Titan flexible enough for it? How much stiffer is the Titan compared to the F1-R? If the difference is not that great, I think I will go for the F1-R… I want a real stiff board, with enough flex to be able to get out of a mogul field and tight tree lines alive.

  18. Craig
    October 25, 2009

    Hi Shay,

    Thanks for the review! I’ve been looking at the new F1R as an upgrade from a Burton Custom that i’ve been riding for the last 5 years and am really just curious to see if you think there is a significant difference between those two boards? I don’t really hit the park at all, mainly just backcountry and groomers.


  19. October 26, 2009

    The Titan is stiffer but has less dampening, really great for bombing and straight runs. The F1-R is more playful flex, has more dampening so handles conditions very well in absorbing them. Definitely for tree riding, I’d prefer the F1-R for the quickness, the Titan you’d have to be a really strong rider to ride it in trees and it could ride you.

    Definitely a significant difference, custom was meant to be more all mountain freestyle and premiere F1-R is more freeride. I think it’d definitely suit the backcountry and groomers better than your custom and offer up better float in pow when you need it.

  20. Craig
    October 26, 2009

    Thanks for the fast response Shay! I forgot to mention that i also love the trees and find the Custom pretty easy to flick through there – do you think the F1-R would be similarly easy to flick through the trees vs. the Custom?

  21. Mike
    November 23, 2009

    Per your advice, I got to demo the new F1-R yesterday. Your review was spot on. I was delighted to find that NS kept all of the good characteristics of the last years F1, while making the F1-R more versitile. It only took me a few turns to feel like I had the new board dialed. Same stability and carvability, but quicker edge to edge and didn’t have to work as hard to power turns. I could still charge turns if I wanted too without blowing through and over rotating. I was very skeptical of NS being able to make the F1 better. Some how they managed to pull it off and F1-R really is better.

  22. November 23, 2009

    Craig, I think you’ll find it a lot easier to maneuever in the trees and it’ll hold up in powder. It’s more freeride than the custom is.

    Mike, that’s great to hear that you demoed it and had the same thoughts on the board! It is great that they were able to enhance the Premier into a better board, hard to believe but yeah I stand by it as well.

  23. Neil
    November 24, 2009

    Thanks for the review! What are the big differences between the f1-r and the sl-r? Trying to decided if I should go freeride or all mountain. In other words, where would the sl-r fault where the f1-r would take charge, and where would the f1-r fault where the sl-r would take charge?

  24. zenlen
    December 17, 2009

    same question as Neil…

    Neil: did you decide on slr or f1r?

  25. natch
    December 21, 2009

    As Neil and zenlen also requested, would you compare/contrast the F1-R and the SL-R please? I own an SL-R (love it!) and I’m considering buying an F1-R. Are the differences between the two subtle or blatant? Are they too similar to be worth owning both? Thanks.

  26. December 21, 2009

    Good questions about the F1-R and SL-R, I haven’t ridden this years SL-R to compare but have ridden previous years. It really depends on your riding, if you are more freeride then the premier F1-R is the choice, if you tend to stray all mountain mix of freeriding/park the SL-R is the better choice. The SL-R is more do it all, playful but still can charge, its softer than the premier and the tech specs are different so really depends on where you ride.

    Natch, premier is stiffer than the Sl-R you’d definitely notice a difference and it’d be more charging. I don’t think their too similiar but depends on what your looking for in a new riding board.

  27. natch
    December 22, 2009

    Thank you for your input, Shay.

    Since you have ridden numerous boards, in your opinion which would be the better choice for deep pow riding, a rocker camber freeride board (e.g., F1-R) or a traditional camber dedicated powder board (e.g., Arbor Abacus)? Which design stays on top of the powder more effectively? Which design is less likely to bury the nose?

  28. Craig
    March 09, 2010

    Hi Shay,

    I was curious as to what your thoughts were on choosing the size for an F1R – we don’t really get the chance to demo boards down here… I’m about 5 ft 7 and weigh 165 lbs. I’m guessing that either the 157 or 159 would suit but was wondering which one you would recommend?


  29. ipps
    March 15, 2010

    Hey shay, im on the hunt for a board thatll ride powder, trees and stuff just outside resort (not serious back country), going into my fourth season, but also want to start messing around on the pipe (so need something pretty forgiving). This board definitely seems to tick the box on the first point, and i know with a proper rider behind it, the pipes not a problem, would you advise i steer clear?

  30. March 21, 2010

    Natch, reverse camber makes powder a lot easier to ride and you don’t work as hard to stay afloat…plus you can ride centered over your board instead of in the backseat. I prefer reverse camber in powder by far.

    Craig, you can size down with the F1-R but depends on what you’ll be riding more frequently. I ride a 157cm Lotus which I sized down to from cambered 159 premier and it works for me in that size. I’d say the 157 for you will be fine but depends on your riding style, where you ride and the conditions you plan to ride the most.

    Ipps, it can handle the pipe…but the only complaint with it in pipe is stance options since it’s setback and you might ride switch in the pipe it’s not ideal but can do it. All of the above on the powder, trees and outside resort riding. I ride my lotus (men’s version of premier) in the pipe all the time and enjoy it, it does fine for being a freeride board.

  31. Ca-Pow
    March 25, 2010

    Hi Shay,

    First off love your website and your reviews. You are awesome! I’ve been riding for 21 years and what you do for this great sport is wonderful! Much respect! My home Mountain is Mammoth and I usually visit Park City, Utah in March. Favorite riding day would be dodging trees in light powder on a steep run. Reality is it’s resort riding most of the time but at pretty great places. This season I’ve been the demo man for my Ride Timeless 163 finally couldn’t be repaired again. 🙁 So I dove back into equipment/companies/technologies and have been evaluating since November 09. Yesterday, at The Canyons I made last run of the year. The board that was my favorite oddly enough is the Never Summer Premier F1. Oddly, since you have tested many more board than me and have come to the same conclusion. However, I’m contemplating the 2011 Heritage for I heard it floats better in Powder because it’s a mid-wide, also it is lighter, and a little softer when you need that playfulness. That said I didn’t ride a Heritage and wouldn’t want to give up these aspects of what I loved about the F1. They were as follows; Skating on this board, as goofy as it sounds, is actually fun and distinctly easier than any other board, If the Heritage is quicker edge to edge I would be shocked, stability at high speeds was AMAZING!!!, rode through icy, cruddy, crusty, slushy, groomers, and a little powder and it held an edge better than Magne-traction on the hard stuff, didn’t overly dig in like the Magne-traction on the softer stuff, completely predictable in all turning situations coupled with an old Cadillac-like suspension feel, flat-footing it for speed the board never felt like it would catch an edge or for that matter it never caught an edge all day and lastly It gave me so much confidence it pushed my riding level up a notch or two. I know I should probably just get the F1 but since I have till next year I was hoping to get your thoughts on these two boards. Has NS made any adjustments other than the graphics on the 2011 F1.

    Sorry for long post but for the record if any one has questions about the following boards here is my 09’/10 demo list. Burton Custom, Supermodel, Custom V-Rocker, Joystick. Arbor Roundhouse & Abacus. Lib-Tech Travis Rice BTX, TRS, Travis Rice CTX and Skate Banana. Never Summer Premier F1.

  32. Cole
    November 23, 2010

    Hey Shay,

    I’m looking to buy a board, I’ve rented unitl now, and the premiers caught my eye. I switch fairly often so would the premier f1 be better for me? I never go into the park but do pow and groomed.

  33. November 24, 2010

    Cole, the premier is a more intermediate advanced snowboard. For the first board after renting, it’d be a lot of an adjustment and your riding might not be up for it yet. Have you looked at the SL, that’s more all mountain freestyle and will handle pow and groomers.

  34. Ben
    February 13, 2011

    Shay, I was curious how you felt the 157 f1 would do in the bumps. I really enjoy riding the moguls and spend a good amount of time in the trees and bumps and Mary Jane, I also am looking for a damper board, getting a bit older:) Thanks for the insight. BR

  35. February 22, 2011

    Ben, I haven’t taken the premier F1 deliberately on bumps because I prefer not to ride them myself. Definitely in the trees and bumpy powder, the boards held up. Are you able to hit up a NS demo day in Colorado?

  36. osmike
    April 18, 2011

    i have been riding a palmer channel titanium 163 with a sintered base for the last while its as stiff as they come and bullet proof

    will my 163 f-1 we as stable in the crap as the palmer was

    this is my 23 year riding i live in bc


  37. April 21, 2011

    Osmike, I haven’t ridden any palmers so it’d be hard to compare without riding them. I’d see if any shops nearby have any never summer demos or I know Whistler telus has demo days but that’s the only way to know for sure. If you already have the F1 then try riding it and see how you like it.