2020 Spring Buyer’s Guide: Aero Helmets for training and racing
A look at some aero helmet options.
Looking for a new helmet for either training or racing? (Or maybe even for both?) We’ve got you covered.
When it comes to aero performance on a bike, after your position and your wheels the next most important component is your helmet. Gone are the days when you had to make a choice between aerodynamics and ventilation – these days even road-cyclists pay lots of attention to the aero profile of their helmets. Which makes for lots of choice for us triathletes – here are a few options you might consider this year. (Prices are $CDN.)
Offering a combination of aero performance, ventilation and typically Oakley-cool looks, the ARO5 comes with lots of triathlete-pleasing features. There’s an integrated eyewear dock, a BOA 360 Fit system, X-Static bacteria-killing brow padding and MIPS integration that make this both a functional and comfortable helmet. Triathletes love their Oakley sunglasses – now there’s a helmet to match with them.
This compact aero road helmet is specially designed to provide excellent aero performance in a variety of head positions and features a soft, molded EVA rear section for increased comfort. It also comes with a visor from Zeiss optics that uses a strong magnet system to stay in place. The visor tint is specifically designed to enhance the contrast of the road surface that will help you avoid bumps, holes or obstacles in lots of time.
With the dimpled design inspired by Garneau’s speedy P-09 (the most aero option the company offers), the Vitesse weighs just 340 g and combines excellent aerodynamics with a bit more air cooling and movement thanks to the 14 vents. The Spiderlock Pro Road stabilizing system ensures you can dial in a perfect fit, while the latest version of the MIPS system reduces rotational forces if you do have a crash.
Bolle Furo Mips
With a sport-car inspired design, the Furo looks great, but performs even better thanks to its comfort, light weight, aero profile and 31 vents for optimal air flow. Those vents can be covered up, too, thanks to the removable aero shells, so you can make the Furo more or less aero depending on the conditions. A handy “sunglasses garage” makes it easy to pop your glasses off when required, while the included MIPS technology provides added protection.
Designed with triathletes in mind, you get optimized ventilation and aerodynamics with the Tardiz2. The narrow, droplike shape and dimpled rear surface cut through the wind with ease, while the ATS fit system ensures a comfortable fit. On super-hot days you can use the Aquavent port on the top of the helmet (which can be closed off for added aerodynamics if needed) to squirt water right onto your head. Designed to be worn with the sunglasses of your choice, the 340 g Tardiz2 has a lot to offer triathletes of all levels.
Giro Vanquish MIPS
Even though it is billed as a high-performance road-cycling helmet, you see a lot of the Vanquish helmets on the course at the Ironman World Championship because of its excellent aero profile and huge vents that channel air past your head to keep you cool. The Roc Loc 5 Air MIPS fit system is extremely comfortable and easy to adjust for a great fit. The visor features Carl Zeiss optics and three strong magnets – when you need a bit more air flow or are done your ride you can easily flip the visor and clip it to the helmet.
Smith Ignite Mips
While cyclists favour this helmet because of its aerodynamic profile and optimal ventilation, this is another helmet triathletes are sure to embrace. The lightweight Aerocore construction and included MIPS system provide excellent protection, while the VaporFit adjustable fit system makes it easy to dial in a great fit. There are eight optimized vents to help keep your head ventilated, and it’s easy to either wear your sunglasses or store them if light conditions change.
Specialized S-Works TT
Inspired from the design of the S-Works McLaren TT, this helmet differentiates itself from the competition thanks to the patented Gill Vents that pull air into the helmet and let it flow past the head to the rear exhaust port. The result is a helmet that tests 62 seconds faster over a 40-km course than a regular cycling helmet that still manages to keep your head cool. Add in MIPS, the height-adjustable Mindset micro-dial fit system and the 4X Drylite webbing and you get a fast, comfortable helmet that will turn heads both out on the course and in transition.
Using a honeycombed, aero, Multi Speed design, the AirBreaker will be popular for triathletes looking for a light helmet for training, or for super-hot races when you want maximum ventilation. Using Force Air Cooling Technology, there are 11 air inlets and three outlets to flow air by your head. Comfort is enhanced thanks to the aerodynamic FlowStraps which are both flutter-free and skin-friendly, along with the Zoom Ace adjustment system which can be used to dial in the perfect fit. There’s even an AirPort – an aerodynamic glasses holder.
Scott Cadence Plus
The Cadence Plus is a classic example of the aero road/ triathlon merge we’re seeing in the world of helmets – excellent aerodynamics and ventilation combine for a helmet that both roadies and triathletes will be happy to use. The Cadence Plus takes it to another level, though – thanks to five Aero plugs you can turn the helmet into a full-fledged aero wonder, or take the plugs out for a helmet that’s still extremely aero, but offers quite a bit of ventilation. Add in MIPS technology for added brain protection and you’re covered for both speed and safety.