Same ski and graphic as last year, but with an M 11 binding for 2021, the Salomon S/Force 9 ski and binding system are a great choice for intermediate and advanced skiers who are in search of the perfectly carved turn. The upgraded binding will give a boost to the skier and added confidence for sure. As was the case last year, the skis opened up a market for those skiers who wanted a carving ski with top-end feel but without the bulky weight. Built with a poplar wood core and a semi-sandwich sidewall, the S/Force 9 is an 80 mm underfoot ski with a ton of energy and pop. Not quite the high-end carver of the S/Force Bold, the 9 will make a lot of skiers learn to carve better and with more precision. A bit of tip rocker helps you get into the turn, as well as giving a bit of extra confidence in softer snow. But overall, these skis are ideal for those advanced-style turners who know how to set an edge. They punch above their level but are still accessible for skiers who are looking for something to grow into. The 170 cm length generates a 16-meter turn radius, which is on the short side, but is great for helping skiers get the hang of linking carved turns from top to bottom. Our testers all skied the 2020 version with the 10 DIN binding, but their impression of the ski will still hold true.
Rocker / Camber
Rick Randall found the 177 (the longest length) to be a good length, and his high scores show his appreciation for the ski. All 4's out of 5 for Rick for all categories including quickness, maneuverability, and overall impression. We are expecting skiers to find them quick and forgiving, so this is certainly a step in the right direction. Rick calls the S/Force 9 "very playful from edge to edge. Surprisingly a fun ski! Good edge hold, nice short to medium-radius turns. Nice energy out of the ski from turn to turn. Great for upper-intermediate to advanced level skiers." Right on, there Rick! Also on the appropriately sized 177, Michael Rooney was a big fan of the stability, quickness, and maneuverability of the S/Force 9. These categories earned 5's out of 5 for Michael. 4's for playfulness, edge hold, and overall impression show the well-roundedness of these narrower carvers. "The S/Force 9 is stable and pretty quick to get on edge. It forgives little mistakes nicely and smoothly. It is good for an up-and-coming intermediate as well as very experienced intermediate skiers." In addition to the strong performance in quick turns, Michael also notes that "it makes great wide turns, too."
Bob St.Pierre was a bit oversized for the 177, as he'd appreciate a longer length, but since they don't make it, the 177 would have to do. As such, his high score of 4 out of 5 for quickness and maneuverability is not a shock. 3's for stability, playfulness, forgiveness, and edge hold all show the high-end potential of the S/Force 9. He calls it a "great all-around cruiser with tons of front-side potential. Super quick and light. Tons of fun and able to vary turn shapes and styles." Capable of pleasing a skier who's 6'2" and 220 pounds, the 177 cm S/Force 9 proves to punch well above its level.
Light, quick, and fun, the 2021 Salomon S/Force 9 gets a binding upgrade but you'll still get the snap and pop and energy that we all loved from the 2020 version.