Cyclosport.org REVIEW: KASK C-50 Vertigo Helmet
by Adam Tranter
Review by Phil Sheehan
There'll be plenty of attention on what those marginal-gains-seeking innovators at Team Sky are wearing this season. Top marks to those of you who've picked out what lids Dave Brailsford's men have been sporting. Kask, an Italian manufacturer of skiing, mountaineering and cycling helmets, supplies Team Sky with its top of the range C-50 Vertigo model. Having spent the past couple of weeks trying one out, we can vouch for their quality.
The Kask Vertigo in Red/White option;Â it's also available in Blue/White.
The first thing that struck us was just how roomy the Vertigo was. Many other manufacturers size their medium helmets up to a 55cm-56cm circumference, which for this tester means a comfy fit in a Giro, a tight fit around the sides of the head in a Specialized and a so-so fit in a Bell.
The Kask Vertigo is roomy enough for bonces from 48cm to 58cm, and a rather unique hinged closure at the rear allows the wearer to achieve the perfect vertical and horizontal fit. This helmet really does sit very well indeed, and its comfort levels are further enhanced by some rather plush rubberized padding on the interior.
My favourite feature, however, is the chin strap. Without coming over all southern-sissy, I have found that my chin and the area in front of my ears get chafed by most helmet straps in the summer - you know the feeling when a sweat-soaked nylon strap turns all hard and salty.
By contrast the Vertigo offers a rather luxurious imitation leather strap which claims to be anallergic and washable and certainly won't rub harshly against the skin. Remember, we're talking about marginal gains here! The straps, and the rear of the helmet, also feature hi-viz details for night-time safety.
Not that we've had muchÂ by way of warm weather so far this year, but we imagine airflow through this helmet will be just about right with 24 vents.
We're told that the K-10 Race helmet (as used by Barloworld last year)Â comes with a clip-in anti-insect grid, which is a superb idea (just ask Daniele Bennati, whose 2009 Tour de France preparations were derailed when he crashed after being stung by a bee). But unfortunately the Vertigo system is being worked on as we speak, and isn't currently available.
The KASKÂ up and down retension adjustment system (and model Adam Tranter's increasing grey hair)
Pricing is around the same mark for the top models from the other major manufacturers, RRP is £155, and £175 for the Team Sky replica. All in all, it's an excellent lid in terms of comfort, lightness and features. The only downside, in this tester's opinion, is that on some heads the Vertigo will look big and bulky (even if it doesn't feel it).
Cyclosport.org will have a Team Sky replica Kask lid to give away shortly, so stay tuned for a competition.
CYCLOSPORT.ORG RATING: 8/10
RRP:Â £155 (Team Sky Replica £175)
Size tested:Â Medium (48cm - 58cm)
We Like: The helmet's comfortable, especially with its super-duper chin strap
We Don't: It looks massive if you're of a smaller head
Where to Buy: www.activelifelogistics.co.uk
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