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Thursday, March 20, 2008

I’m joining the aliens

And yes, that alien is made of veggies.

Here's the news flash: I was able to successfully secure an extremely rare (at least until September) white Rudy Project Syton helmet. The blue ones abound but wouldn’t match my bike at all. Amazingly, had 10 white ones in stock in the S/M size of the SuperComp variety. Originally I had ordered the Syton Open from E-Rudy but was later informed that the next shipment from the manufacturer wasn’t due until September. Everyone else on the planet seems to be out of the white ones with the exception of some guy in Italy with a used one listed on eBay. There are a couple of things I simply won’t buy used and helmets are one of them. Some others are underwear and car seats for my kids.

The Syton Open is simply a scaled-down version of the SuperComp without the ear covers and visor thingy. The only drawback for me is paying extra dough for the SuperComp with the possibility that I may not be using the ear covers and visor thingy unless 1) they don’t get in my way 2) they’re comfortable.

I decided to race with an aero helmet after reading some fantastic claims that wearing one can save you up to two minutes on a 40k time trial. I’m not sure if I believe this or not, but if it’s true, it’s one of the most economical things you can do to improve your bike split. Most pro triathletes wear them and it seems that all pro cyclists wear them for time trials. There must be something to them I suppose, so as long as I don't look too goofy ~ think of the cover girl from the last Triathlon Life issue ~ I'll give 'em a try.

I always liked the look of the Syton because it’s the least dorky looking aero-helmet in my opinion (and apparently many others’ opinion judging from the supply shortage) but two things really sealed the deal for me on this helmet. The first was the last year’s Bike Sport review of this helmet in comparison to a few others. The absolute kicker for me was this statement, “Ventilation is better than any aero helmet we tried making the Syton Open ideal for extremely hot conditions”. Anyone who’s raced in South Carolina knows the heat is always a BIG factor.

It may seem like a trivial thing, but the other reason was aesthetics. The shape of the helmet perfectly mimics the shape of the white paint that begins on the head tube of my bike and separates into two flanges that taper down either side of the top tube.

If you look at the Syton from the top, you’ll see that this is the same shape of the helmet, where the crown part of the helmet separates into two aero flanges that taper toward the back.

Cool huh? Another aspect of the aesthetics that I like is the fact that the crown part of the helmet looks more like a regular cycling helmet in that it has ridges in it and is not shaped like a dome ~ and everyone knows that all aliens have dome shaped heads.

I’m joining the aliens but I don’t really want to look like one if I can help it.

1 comment:

Bill Lawrence said...

Good choice!

Keep the side pieces.

It will give you the whole Andy Potts/Roman Soldier look!