I was lucky enough to get my hands on a Rudy Project Wingspan helmet before my Ironman race. I test drove it several times before the race, and it was super comfortable and super lightweight and super cool. So, I did wear it at Beach2Battleship and I was completely comfortable the entire ride. I had a great bike split, and I especially made good time in that strong headwind the last 38 miles of the race. I love this helmet. Read on for full review. Or just click on over to the Rudy site and pre-order one for 25% off! Use promo code: helmet at check out to get the 25% off prebooking. Rudy will have a limited shipment in time for the holidays. More to come in February.
Background Info: A while ago, I emailed Rudy Project asking if they would send me one of their Open Syton aero helmets for review. They kindly sent me one and I love it. It is super comfortable – and alot of Pro athletes are using it so it must be good from an aero standpoint.
Well…one of my blog friends is John Cobb, renowned wind tunnel expert and bike fit guru. He is also the designer of Rudy’s newest helmet, the Wingspan; and he got wind of my blog post. Pun intended Even though the Wingspan is not yet available, John had one for his own personal use, and he offered to loan it to me to give it a test ride. I gratefully said “Hell yeah!”.
It felt like my birthday again opening the box from John Cobb and pulling out the helmet wrapped in a very cool protective sleeve.
Here is the Wingspan helmet…
I weighed the helmet on my diet scale, along with the Syton and my old aero helmet. Here are the numbers:
My old Aero Helmet*: 16 ounces
Rudy Project Syton Open Helmet: 13 ounces
Rudy Project Wingspan: 12 ounces
*My old aero helmet is a very popular brand and model. But I can’t tolerate that old helmet because it squeezes my temples and gives me a headache. It also feels very bulky. That is why I asked Rudy Project about their helmets in the first place!
Both of the Rudy project helmets are lightweight and both are very comfortable. The Wingspan does cover the ears and covers more of the head than the Syton Open. I was a bit concerned that I would not like the way it felt because of the full coverage. But it was completely comfortable. I wore it for several long training rides prior to my Ironman race to be sure I would feel good wearing it for 6+ hours. It feels great!
Here I am getting ready for a long training ride…
Here is a picture from the Rudy website, showing some of the features…
One cool thing about the Wingspan is the idea of removable venting. One of my test rides was on a hot and humid day. I started out that ride with the the tail cover in place. An hour into the ride, I felt a little warm, so I stopped to remove the tail cover to allow more air flow over my head. I wasn’t hot by any means…I was mostly just curious to see if I would notice a difference at all. My head did feel noticeably cooler with the tail cover removed…and it stowed nicely in my back jersey pocket for the remainder of the ride. Since my Ironman race was in November, I was not worried about hot temps, so I used the tail cover. I also used the netted front venting.
Here I am hunkering down into a headwind at about mile 85 of the Beach2Battleship race:
While I was setting up my T1 gear at the race site, several athletes noticed the Wingspan. They asked me how I got my hands on it so early - they were jealous! And of course, I took the opportunity to brag about being bloggy friends with John Cobb. I love the Wingspan…I wish I could keep it, but I have to send it back to John. I do get to keep the Rudy Project Open helmet, which is also a super product, and I will wear that next season at all my races. So, it’s all good!
Click on over to the Rudy site if you are interested in pre-ordering one at 25% off! Use promo code: helmet at check out to get the 25% off prebooking. Rudy will have a limited shipment in time for the holidays. More to come in February.
FTC GUIDES NOTICE: THIS PRODUCT WAS PROVIDED FREE OF CHARGE (ON LOANER) BY THE DESIGNER OF THE PRODUCT, JOHN COBB. THE PRODUCT IS MADE BY www.rudyproject.com