Compact Aero Helmets
The inspiration: Long-tail aero helmets that engulf the rider’s head can produce fantastic wind tunnel results, but hitting the height of efficiency comes with consequences. Surrounding the head prevents air from flowing over the rider and can lead to a perception of increased heat, according to a study conducted at the University of Texas, Austin. And full-length helmets can create additional drag when the rider shifts around. Open aero helmets are often faster than traditional road options but don’t come with the drawbacks.
In practice: The Specialized S-Works Evade allows more free-flowing air over the rider while still keeping drag to a minimum, according to testing conducted by Specialized aerodynamicists. It fits and feels like a road helmet and can double as a speed booster for group rides between races.