Ritual hockey sticks have been on my ‘must review’ list for a while, I’ll be damned if we could find one. Then, like a mirage on a dance floor, she was there, the Ritual Specialist 2 hockey stick…… mmmmm
To start with, I just stared at it and started at it some more… as I came around I could only think about an upcoming article for drag flick sticks and I knew at that moment I had to review the Specialist 2.
Immediately noticeable is the drag-flick groove, imagine you had a penalty corner every 30 seconds and time after time, after time your drag flick slowly wore away at the hockey stick shaft until you were left with the perfect groove, this is (slightly over excited) what you have on the Ritual Specialist 2.
Personally I am rubbish at drag flicks, if something could help me improve it would be a way of keeping the ball under control as you bring it from behind to in-front (snap the coaches call it) so you launch straight.
Whatever, it looks amazing, more prominent than the very similar groove in the adidas df24 carbon and compo 1.
I thought that the thinness the groove in the Ritual Specialist 2 causes to the lower part of the shaft might make me review a slightly weaker hitting hockey stick, and I was wrong. The Ritual Specialist 2 hit the ball with tonnes of power, you just have that kind of high quality feel to the stick that makes you comfortable giving it a jolly good whack.
What you can’t do with the Ritual Specialist 2 is slap hit the ball with a nice low stick, I couldn’t anyway, the damn ball bounced all over the place. The drag-flick groove got in the way, though I was expecting it from previous experience with such devices. I’m sure you could compensate with time.
On the contrary, hitting with a straight bat is good, hitting on the reverse is great. Ritual use a squared, reinforced edge. If you haven’t used a hockey stick with a ‘square’ edge it can be a great addition to improve power with your low, sweeping reverse passes and shots. Not only power, it increases the chance of catching the ball cleanly.
Technically though, the Rital Specialist is one of those I love to review. Even though the Specialist 2 is not the top of the Specialist range, Ritual have LOADED it with tech.
One things we can learn from Ritual is they have scoured the world for the best materials, Japanese Carbon (commonly regarded the best), branded Kevlar and Swiss resin (not the smokeable stuff) even the chamois grip is great quality.
Maybe the best review of the Ritual Specialist 2 hockey stick feature is the grip. Chamois is standard, if not you can wrap it in one, the ritual specialist 2 has a noticeable extra padding to the grip that not only makes it thicker and feel more gripable, you can feel how it should reduce vibrations. Nothing eliminates vibrations in January & February in the North of England, at least Ritual have tried to help.
So all-round Ritual have one of the best drag-flick specialist hockey sticks here. Supported with noticeably quality construction and materials the hockey stick review is full of nothing except praise for the Ritual Specialist 2.
Because of the degree in the drag flick groove I wouldn’t recommend it for a player who is spraying passes around 90% of the time and shooting corners the rest, however if you are attacking the D most of the time and need to deliver the killer blow from corners, a great option is the Specialist 2 from Ritual.
- Shaft bow: 24mm curve at 200mm up from heel (extreme low)
- Headshape: Maxi
- Material Composition: 70% carbon (feels like more) / 25% fibreglass / 5% Kevlar aramid
- Drag Flick feature: Groove and really low bow
You can hit this link to get a full list of the amazing spec of the Ritual Specialist 2 from Ritual’s own website
In the USA, this stick (same specification) is known as the Ritual Specialist 75, available on amazon
If you are looking to find the best hockey stick for drag flick skills, read our article on that very subject by clicking on the link