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SKI REVIEW
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58 skis tested by professionals


Ski Review 2017

Giant slalom

SKI REVIEWS 2017

Type of ski: standard ski derived from competition skis
Type of user: competition skiers, good-to-excellent skiers
Main evaluation criteria: performance, suitability for non-competition skiers

Click on the name of a model to view a full review

17.5/20
Rossignol Hero Master M21 [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom
Testers' ChoiceRecommended by our reviewers!
There's no getting away from it: the Hero Master with its R21 World Cup aluminum plate thrilled the reviewers. The level of performance is extremely high and the ski is a real powerhouse. This model from Rossignol is incredibly incisive with fast turn initiation and great precision. Turns are carved with a scalpel and, once anchored, the Hero Master is absolutely unshakeable. Grip and stability are quite simply exceptional. The ski feels like it's fixed on a rail, totally steady even in dynamic turns on hard pack at very high speeds. The reliability of the push-off ("a solid ski under foot" as one reviewer said) in all situations is one of the main reasons for the enjoyment you get out of it. One of the reviewers said they had a "feeling of invulnerability".

Liked: A remarkably incisive ski Excellent overall performance Superior grip and turn performance ...

Disliked: Requires a certain degree of technical skills and physical engagement ...

16.6/20
Dynastar Speed WC Master (R21 WC) [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom

The Speed Course Master, with the same aluminium plate as its cousin at Rossignol, is a true mainstream Giant slalom ski. It gives riders not only the performance they expect from this type of ski, but also exceptional accessibility, which means it can be used by (almost) everyone! In effect, overall performance is extremely high. The ski is lively, precise, incisive, stable and grippy, even if its grip and stability are not quite up to the standard of its cousin at Rossignol. Highly versatile and adaptive, it will fit in with every riders' whims. Riders can happily progress at all speeds for all types of ride and terrain. It handles well when riding cool and smooth, in very dynamic long-radius turns at high speeds, or on steep slopes with shorter-radius turns. However, above all, it's a remarkably tolerant, intuitive and simple to use ski for this category that is often very technical and demanding. The ski requires little adaptation time. "You're very soon on top of it" one of the reviewers remarked. It's the ideal ski for good to very good riders looking for a (very) high performance ski without sacrificing enjoyment.

Liked: Very good overall performance An incisive, precise ski Excellent accessibility Sound, consistent behaviour, easy to handle Versatile and able to ...

Disliked: Grip and performance slightly lacking compared to some other models in this category...

16.3/20
Völk Racetiger Speedwall GS UVO [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom

Riders are instantly at ease with the RaceTiger GS UVO. In downhill rides, comfort and accessibility are noticeable straightaway. Above all, its comfort is exceptional for this category of racing-oriented ski. It absorbs the terrain extremely well and requires remarkably little effort for steering. "A leather upholstered BMW" one of the PROSKILAB™ reviewers commented. The Racetiger is a very reassuring ski for intermediary skiers. Easy to handle, docile, especially at ease in turn initiation, it will go where you take it without flinching. The ski is extremely versatile in a wide variety of turns (including skid turns), remaining in beat with the rider. Turn performance and grip are very good, although not exceptional. When pushed in very dynamic turns at very high speed, the Racetiger starts to show signs of weakness. The rocker and relatively flexible tip make the rides less precise, especially when there's a lot of weight towards the front of the ski. There's a lack of impulsion when coming out of turns due to the somewhat weak rebound. The ski would have excelled in the "High performance carvers" category, but is weak in terms of pure efficiency in the Giant slalom category. However, it remains a very good ski that we would recommend for a wide range of skiers from intermediate to very good, and, above all, for riders who want to progress from carving to Giant slalom turns.

Liked: Consistent behaviour, sound and reassuring A very comfortable ski that absorbs the terrain and requires very little physical engagement An easy, d...

Disliked: Performance slightly less convincing in very dynamic turns Tip tends to lose grip if there's too much weight in front, and floats at high speed (rock...

15.9/20
Head WC Rebels iSpeed [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom

We decided to include the iSpeed Rebels from Head in the PROSKILAB™ review after the pre-tests and discussions with the brand, and we were not disappointed. This model really walks the talk in powder! There's no doubt, it’s the kind of ski that invites you to rip through the snow. With incisive initiation, fantastic turn performance, exceptional stability and explosive push-off, the ski reminds anyone who may have forgotten that it has a true racing ski pedigree. The model is a devil in disguise that just invites you to step on the gas; in most cases, the skier reaches his limits before the ski does. But the model also demands a lot in return for its elitist performance and requires considerable technical and physical prowess. It's not an easy ski since it's very stiff with little flex. According to the reviewers, it requires "constant engagement", and perfect positioning... The iSpeed Rebels is a powerful and aggressive ski, designed for performance, but unfortunately lacking the accessibility needed for the programme. It's a great choice for very good, expert and competition skiers looking for performance above all.

Liked: A stiff, efficient ski Punchy and playful Excellent grip Exceptional hold in turns, especially impressive in long turns at very high speeds Perf...

Disliked: Requires concentration Technically and physically demanding ...

15.1/20
Fischer RC4 RC [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom

The RC4 RC from Fisher has passed the preselection for this PROSKILAB™ category for several years. While it didn't come top, it's still one of the best skis on the market and well deserves its place in the selection. First of all, it's a genuine giant slalom ski, full of punch, grippy and incisive. It's a ski you can count on when you want to zip down the slopes in all situations. But it's also a very enjoyable, playful, comfortable and versatile ski that will give a lot of enjoyment. It's medium radius and good flex distribution means that it's happy and even playful in short turns. It's not the best performer, nor the most accessible, but it's the most consistent ski in this selection. It's also a model that's particularly enjoyable, and we recommend it for athletic and competition skiers.

Liked: An accessible, tolerant ski Very good overall performance Versatile, able to vary turns Generally fun ...

Disliked: Requires a little time to adapt and perfect positioning, needs to be skied in central position. Slight lack of performance, especially in cruising mo...

15.0/20
Nordica Dobermann GSR RB EVO + N POWER X-Cell EVO [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom

Usually selected and tested with success, the Dobermann GSR EDT was awarded the "Best ski" distinction in this category last year, and was a ski that the reviewers really loved. The model got special praise for its performance, while remaining accessible for a non-competition public. The version reviewed this year (Dobermann GSR RB EVO) has been fitted with carbon inserts ("Racing Bridge" which explains the "RB" initials) that have considerably increased the ski's stiffness, enhancing its performance in radical turns to the detriment of accessibility and comfort. While the ski is extremely stable, grippy and solid in turn performance and globally very efficient, this year it has gone one better in terms of liveliness, accessibility and versatility. Since it is very stiff, getting some flex on this new version of the Dobermann is particularly difficult. This gives an impression of inertia on turn initiation, with limited short turn options and a lot of physical and technical work required from the skier in general. The Dobermann GSR RB Evo has become too elitist for the "Giant" programme as defined by PROSKILAB, where accessibility for a non-competition public is an important criteria. It's still a very good Giant slalom ski, close to an FIS ski, and awesomely effective when cruising long turns at high speeds. We recommend it for relatively well-built, extremely athletic and competition skiers.

Liked: A ski that's fast and stable at high speeds, 'on a rail' at high speeds Remarkable grip Consistent behaviour, sound and reassuring, even at top sp...

Disliked: A very stiff ski, both technically and physically demanding Handling needs some time to adapt to Some inertia when entering turns, lacks punch comin...

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