First review of the ride: Trek revamps road helmets with faster Ballista and lighter, more vented Velocis

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Trek has launched a model new era of its greatest street helmets, although their existence will not come as a shock to anybody who pays shut consideration to WorldTour staff gear decisions.

Trek-Segafredo helped develop the all-new variations of the Ballista aero helmet and Velocis all-around helmet, and raced them this season. You might have observed Mads Pedersen completed third whereas sporting the Ballista on the Tour of Flanders final weekend.

The enhancements are plentiful and nothing to blink a watch on. From aerodynamics to weight, air flow to security, these helmets carry out on all fronts.

Learn additionally:Cannondale Dynam helmet evaluation: crash take a look at!

The ballista: important aerodynamic financial savings, however under no circumstances prices

The brand new Trek Ballista Mips aero helmet. (Picture: Trekking)

As earlier than, the Ballistas Cost stays the quickest doable helmet that’s nonetheless snug sufficient for hours-long street biking phases.

With the same old hallmarks of aero street helmets, particularly restricted vents and an elongated profile, the Ballista appears quick, and Trek has some numbers to again up its declare to be the model’s quickest street helmet ever .

Trek claims the Ballista saves 10.1 watts over the course of an hour in comparison with their Velocis street helmet (which received an aero enchancment itself, however extra on that later). Trek additionally claims a big full-bike-length benefit in a dash end when sporting the Ballista. Trek hasn’t mentioned which helmet it is being in comparison with.

However aerodynamic financial savings in helmets nearly at all times means compromises, each for air flow and weight. Nonetheless, the compromises within the Ballista appear fairly minimal.

At 275 grams for a dimension medium CPSC (US model), the Ballista is simply 15 grams heavier than the Velocis, Treks lightest helmet. A dimension medium that Trek despatched me really far exceeded that, weighing in at simply 261 grams.

Trek additionally says enhancements to the air flow channels made utilizing computational fluid dynamics evaluation make the brand new Ballista cooler than different aero street helmets in the marketplace.

The Velocis: Lighter, cooler and extra aerodynamic, select all three

In distinction to the Ballistas aerodynamic profile, the Velocis appears like a traditional street helmet, and consequently performs with its low weight and excessive air flow.

By integrating OCLV Carbon Fiber and optimizing the form, Trek has remodeled the brand new Velocis into the lightest street helmet in its lineup. A medium-sized CPSC model weighs a claimed 260 grams. Nonetheless, my dimension medium pattern weighed 269 grams. Nonetheless gentle, however not as gentle as claimed, and eight grams heavier than the common Ballista aero helmet I’ve weighed.

The Velocis is made with Trek’s OCLV Carbon.

For comparability, Giro claims 270 grams for a medium CPSC Helios Spherical, and its different prime helmets are 5 to 10 grams heavier than that.

Trek backs up these low weight claims with important cooling capability, claiming a 38% enchancment over the earlier Velocis. That is once more on account of a revamped air flow and duct system.

The brand new vents did not detract from aerodynamics regardless of letting way more air circulate over your head. Trek claims the Velocis is now 18 seconds sooner than the earlier era Velocis. There isn’t any additional elaboration from Trek on the way it was measured, nevertheless it’s probably an hour-long time trial.


Each the Ballista and Velocis use Mips Air for added security. The Air is a low-profile, light-weight model of the Mips grip layer that integrates seamlessly into the helmet for a extra snug match, particularly in comparison with earlier Mips liners.

Trek makes use of Mips Air for the Ballista and Velocis. (Picture: Trekking)

It nonetheless performs the identical perform as the unique Mips, permitting the helmet to maneuver independently of the top within the occasion of an angled impression, decreasing the pressure reaching the neck and head within the first moments of a crash.

Mips Air is probably going a significant component in serving to each Ballista and Velocis earn five-star rankings (the very best doable) from Virginia Tech’s impartial helmet testing lab, which has grow to be the trade benchmark for helmet testing. security.

If it is advisable to take a look at these security options in the actual world, Trek is sort sufficient to supply a one-year crash alternative coverage. The model gives you a free alternative if you happen to crash your helmet within the first yr of possession.

Consolation and match

Trek thought concerning the consolation and real-world usability of those helmets when designing them.

The match adjustment system makes use of a single lace-up Boa dial, as discovered on most street footwear at the moment. The Boa strap has two peak positions and the cradle across the again of the top has three peak adjustment choices.

Trek makes use of the Mips Air padding system. (Picture: Trekking)

Trek has additionally thought of line of sight with these helmets, beveling the entrance fringe of the helmets to supply a wider discipline of view within the using place. Talking of imaginative and prescient, Trek additionally designed the vents on each helmets with sun shades in thoughts.

Trek makes use of a Boa dial adjustment system. (Picture: Trekking)

Velocis first driving ideas

The Velocis is a good trying helmet that sticks to the standard model whereas nonetheless providing some notable advantages.

Taking this lid out of the field, its low weight is straight away obvious. Even when my medium trial weighed barely greater than marketed, I would not have observed any further weight with out the assistance of my scale.

The Velocis has a low profile match.

Adjusting and dialing within the match is straightforward. The chin strap could be tightened by pulling on the top of the strap and loosens simply as simply with out twiddling with impossibly tight cloth. Likewise, a easy locking mechanism divides the straps beneath the ears and could be adjusted in seconds. That is typically one of many hardest factors to regulate on a helmet, however Trek will get it proper. The one draw back is that the straps have some slack close to the face which might catch some wind. Anybody who has ridden the earlier era Specialised Prevail could have skilled one thing comparable. It isn’t sufficient to trouble me, nevertheless it’s one thing to remember.

The Boa dial affords a cushty match, although it is also about my one irritation with the helmet. Turning the dial provides steady strain across the head with out important strain factors, guaranteeing a cushty match. However after I tightened the Boa, I encountered some resistance within the dial after a few turns as I attempted to get a cushty, comfortable match. General, it is a small factor and not at all a deal breaker, however the match system does not really feel as strong as these from different manufacturers.

Up entrance, the Velocis performs as marketed. I’ve a thick mass of hair which often means the finer vent factors are misplaced on me. I can inform the distinction between an aero helmet and a vented considered one of course, particularly in the summertime, however I am much less attuned to the variations between the highest helmets.

The Velocis is totally different. I can really feel the additional breeze considerably, to the purpose the place I want I had a cap for a experience in 50F (10C) climate. This has by no means been the case for me in that temperature vary. Come summer season this helmet might be prime of the heap for me.

An nearly unforgivable design mistake for helmets isn’t accommodating sun shades stowed within the vents. Fortunately, the Velocis as soon as once more get issues proper, becoming securely over conventional biking eyewear. Causal sun shades, nevertheless, will not keep put within the entrance vents, so hold your most popular eyewear selection in thoughts earlier than shopping for one.

Conventional biking sun shades match effectively within the vents.

The bevelled entrance can also be a welcome characteristic, offering a totally unobstructed sight view.

The bevelled entrance affords an unobstructed view within the using place.


These high-end helmets include a price ticket to match. Each the Ballista and Velocis value $300 USD. Every mannequin has small, medium and huge sizes accessible.

Shade choices

The Ballista Mips is available in 4 colours: Matte Black, Gloss White, Gloss White/Navy Blue, and Matte Purple Flip.

The Ballista Mips in matte black. (Picture: Trekking)

The Ballista Mips in shiny white. (Picture: Trekking)

The Ballista Mips in matte purple flip. (Picture: Trekking)

The Velocis Mips is offered in 5 colours: Matte Black, Gloss White, Gloss White/Navy, Matte Darkish Aqua, and Gloss Viper Pink/Cobra Blood.

The Velocis Mips in shiny white. (Picture: Trekking)

The Velocis Mips in matte black. (Picture: Trekking)

The Velocis Mips in opaque darkish water. (Picture: Trekking)

The Velocis Mips in shiny viper pink/cobra blood. (Picture: Trekking)

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