Ski Review 2020
SKI REVIEWS 2020
Click on the name of a model to view a full review
Head Worldcup Rebels i.Race [click]
Type of ski : On-piste cruisers
In this programme that focusses on performance and, above all, the sensations the skier gets, the WorldCup Rebels i. Race from Head did not disappoint the reviewers.
They were unanimous in highlighting the sporting qualities of the ski: "incisive at the beginning of curves", "good grip", "demonic in edge-to-edge transitions". It allows you to move quickly "with a great feeling of safety".
The ski offers the best of itself when it's on the edge. It then fits very easily into curves and carves with ease. It can take radical angles and makes it possible, according to the reviewers, "to sit down at each turn". The curve holding and accuracy of handling are exemplary.
The WC Rebels i. Race is easy to handle and offers a good compromise between performance and accessibility. Its intermediate turn radius between slalom and giant allows it to be quite versatile, provided it stays in cut handling.
The ski loves being anchored and taking angles. The slid/skid handling when flat is less intuitive, due to a present and gripping tail.
Cruising is not its cup of tea.
The ability of the Worldcup Rebels i. Race to take radical slopes, its precision, ease of use and sense of safety allow it to convey great sensations. "Super ski", "very good ski", "a treat", the reviewers' comments speak for themselves. We recommend the WC Rebels i. Race to skiers of a good level who want a sporty carving ski.
Liked: High-level performance
Incisive ski, fast trigger, precision
Ability to carve, grip and hold curves
Stability, high-speed behaviour
Disliked: Stepping on the edge, not at ease when flat
Less at ease in sliding or skidding handling...
Head Kore 93 [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30
The Kore 93 from Head, with its 93 mm waist, is positioned between the two All-Mountain Proskilab categories.
It was successfully reviewed last year in "All-Mountain 50/50", where it received a "Best Ski 2019" award. The arrival of the Kore 99 in this category encourages us to review its little brother in the "All-Mountain 70/30" category more aimed at the piste, where it does not let us down.
The waist width of the Kore 93 allows it to take advantage of its competitors off-piste. It achieved the highest possible score in difficult snow, powder buoyancy and powder handling. The quality of the behaviour in choppy snow was stressed by the reviewers.
On the piste, its behaviour is beyond reproach. The Kore 93, "stable and balancing", "easy and gentle", "solid underfoot " shows real qualities and great homogeneity. It is comfortable in all situations and all types of handling. Wider and more typical of freeride than its counterparts in this category, it is also less agile on packed snow, mainly due to a slightly slower trigger. On the other hand, it excels as soon as the terrain becomes less smooth thanks to its remarkable abilities to absorb terrain irregularities.
This season, the Kore 93 from Head confirms the qualities already detected last year. It is one of the few reference skis that occupy the top of the segment in these All-Mountain categories. It is an excellent choice for intermediate to expert skiers who want a very homogeneous and versatile ski.
Liked: Very good off-piste behaviour
Good buoyancy in powder
Exceptional behaviour in choppy snow
Disliked: Reduced agility on-piste, less reactive trigger...
Head Worldcup Rebels i.Speed [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom
The World Cup Rebels i.Speed from Head was reviewed in a little short a size (175 cm for 180 cm requested). With a radius of 18 metres, it is less of the giant type.
The ski is accessible, even "too easy" and gives "good sensations". The performance is good without reaching that of the top of the category. In particular, the reviewers appreciated its ability to enter turns, its curve handling and its stability up to a certain speed. The ski is very "cosy", lively, and accessible for this category. It is a ski that naturally invites you to try out carving (cut curves with big inclinations), a discipline in which it excels. The World Cup Rebels i.Speed is, according to the reviewers, a ski "made to go down into the curve with a controllable reaction of the supports".
Quite flexible for the category, less of the giant type than its counterparts and reviewed in a little short a size, the World Cup Rebels i.Speed does however make its mark in the field of pure performance. At very high speeds, in very dynamic handling, the supports lose their homogeneity and curve handling becomes more turbulent.
A "good carving ski", the Head WorldCup i.Speed is a good choice for good to excellent skiers who like to "take angles".
Liked: General behaviour
Ability to change the radius of curves
Disliked: Not a very rigid ski for this category
Poor performance, loss of homogeneity of supports at very high speed...
Head Kore 99 [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 50/50
While the Kore 93 brilliantly earned a "Best Ski" medal last year in this category, the Kore 99 appears to be a much more rigid and performance-oriented ski.
The ski is made for high speeds, where it excels on- and off-piste. The stability and ability to absorb vibrations is simply exceptional. The ski wants only one thing: to go fast, and according to the reviewers, it "requires space".
In front of such a war machine, lumps of snow in choppy snow should beware! The Kore 99, a rigid ski, attacks them mercilessly. Very stable, it does well in powder, loves slopes; it is the ultimate weapon to hurtle down the slopes at sustained speed.
It is a true freeride ski that is not afraid of anything, and especially not speed. However, it must be kept under control and requires commitment to be deformed: "to control it, you have to lay into it".
Very comfortable in its programme, the ski however proves to have more difficulty at low speeds. The ski does not pivot well and skid handling is poor. The ski suffers from a certain inertia which makes it unplayful. The Kore 99 needs speed and energy: it is not really the ideal ski for romantic outings on the piste!
A rigid, sporty ski, this model from Head is an excellent choice for the committed freeride skier who loves speed and big curves. We recommend it particularly for large sizes.
Liked: Very high-level performance
Skills at very high speed
Behaviour in choppy snow
Ski–snow contact and great ability to absorb vibrations
Disliked: Demanding and physical ski
Not much fun: inertia, slow to change edges, little boost
Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL [click]
Type of ski : Slalom
"Super ski, very responsive and playful" but "tested in too short a size", the I.SL pro from Head shows some good qualities that could not be fully exploited. Tested in 160 cm instead of the 165 cm requested, it would probably have gained additional points had it been the larger size. But the level is already excellent and the ski offers very nice sensations.
The WC Rebels I.SL is very easy to use for this category and the directions for use are simple. We quickly get comfortable and quickly enjoy the ski's liveliness. The ski deforms and anchors very easily. With a radius of 11.5 metres, the WC Rebels i.SL performs very tight turns. Another point the testers especially liked: it likes to be on the edge and makes it possible to take angles defying the laws of physics. Its favourite area is carving "small curves", where it excels.
As a corollary to its ability to anchor, it is less comfortable in skidding and sliding handling, due to a very present tail. The testers found that it skied rather in a centred way in this size. Those who like to ski by applying pressure to the boot housings should probably take it with 5 cm more.
"Playful", "fun", the WC Rebels Pro is a ski that likes to take angles and on which you can really enjoy yourself. We recommend it specifically to skiers of a good to excellent level for a committed carving practice and for introducing to competitions. Even if 160 cm is the reference size of the ski, we recommend the size above for medium to heavy skiers.
Ski that wants to accelerate
Excellent carving handling
Ability to take angles
Effective in small cut bends
Very short turn
Ability in intr...
Disliked: Tested in a slightly short size
Performance in this size
Tail that is present but reduces the range of ski uses in skidding/sliding handling...
Head V-Shape 4 XL [click]
Type of ski : Men's recreational groomers
Presented as an All-Mountain range, Head's "V-shape" range (named because of the shape of the skis, which are wider at the front) is rather a range of piste/"All-Round" skis (like the Speed Zone 4x4 range). It consists of five models with increasing levels of performance: V2, V4, V6, V8, V10.
The V-shape 4 is available in a much larger XL version, with an additional 11 mm at the waist. This model was evaluated by the Proskilab reviewers.
The ski's overall behaviour is good, with a special mention for the ease of pivoting that will reassure skiers with a low technical level. The ski shows itself to be docile, "stable and reassuring", ever predictable. Its width (84 mm at the waist) gives it a head start on varied snow and allows the most adventurous to tease the edges of the piste.
The ski is more at ease in cut handling than in slid and skid handling at low speed. According to the reviewers, "it pushes carving", which will appeal to a number of skiers who wish to discover the sensations of cut curves with large edge cornering angles. This gives it, according to the reviewers, "a great margin for progression".
"Nice surprise, Head!" writes one reviewer. We recommend the V-Shape 4 XL to a wide range of skiers from intermediate to good levels, especially for those who want to experience the fun of carving.
Liked: Carving skills
Easy to pivot, put into turns
Transition between all snow types...
Disliked: Poor behaviour in cool slid, skid handling at low speeds...
Head Super Joy [click]
Type of ski : Women's high-end
Acknowledged by the Proskilab testers for its sporty temperament, the Head Super Joy hasn't changed much this year.
"Excellent ski", "good ski", "fun to ski"... The compliments pour forth and confirm the fun ride that this ski gives, as well as its potential to improve technique.
It's important to note that to enjoy the performance of this ski requires a certain level of ability. The Super Joy likes speed.
Grippy, well-anchored through the turn, it stays stable and with solid hold across all terrain. It has quite a short radius which means it launches into the turn decisively. It's responsive and agile with a good rebound/pop at the end of the turn.
The Super Joy is quite a stiff ski so does need a good level of skill and commitment to stay over the ski and push forward in the boots to flex it correctly. The ski appeared less comfortable in skid turns than last year.
Head's Super Joy is an excellent ski for this category which will satisfy skiers who already have a good technical level, can control carving turns and enjoy speed.
Liked: Overall performance
Stable at high speeds
Snappy turn initiation
Holds the turn
"Solid" and responsive
Fun to ride...
Disliked: Relatively demanding
Requires commitment to be in a correct position
Less at ease with relaxed skidding and sliding...
Head V Shape 8 [click]
Type of ski : Men's high-end
The V-Shape series takes its name from the shape of the skis, which are substantially wider in front. The V-Shape 8 from Head immediately shows its favourite terrain: carving.
A true "carving machine", "reactive", the ski puts itself very "on the edge easily". It feels comfortable and allows you to take important angles. Its flexibility allows it to deform with a minimum of speed and physical commitment. It's a treat on low to moderate slopes: just lean forward, the ski starts immediately and it goes on its own.
Its very "cut" profile (with a sharp hourglass shape), makes it more delicate in skidded and slid handling. On the other hand, the ski is less comfortable outside its natural radius as well as at high speeds.
The V-Shape V8 lacks a little versatility for this programme. Nevertheless, it will be the delight of a large number of skiers from intermediate to good levels who want to discover the sensations of carving in an easy way.
Liked: Carving skills
Easily enters curves
Requires little physical commitment to be deformed...
Disliked: Lack of stability and hold at high speed
Less at ease in skid handling
Lack of versatility for the programme...
Head Kore 93 W [click]
Type of ski :
The excellent Head Kore 93 - last year's "Best ski" in the men's range - has quickly become a benchmark for the all mountain ski. This year it has come out with a women's version: the Kore 93 W.
The construction is the same as that of the men's version. It's interesting to note that Head's approach here is quite different to that of equivalent brands which often include one or more plates of Titanal (an alloy based of aluminium and zinc) which improves rigidity and liveliness of the skis. Whilst the Titanal does offer these advantages, it does also make the ski heavier.
The Austrian brand (also famed for their tennis rackets) have taken an innovative approach and are using new materials such as Koroyd and Graphene. The result is an exceptional stiffness to weight ratio.
To note: the Kore 93 W skied by the Proskilab testers wasn't exactly 93mm underfoot like the men's version. It is 2mm narrower, making it 91mm underfoot. However it is still the widest ski tested in this category.
With its reputation preceding it, the testers were looking forward to a great ski. They weren't disappointed.
It performs very well on piste: grippy, stable, at ease at top speeds. Off-piste, the advantage of the wide underfoot is undeniable, particularly in powder. In the variable, the stiffness allows you to "rip it up"!
This same stiffness, however, restricts the comfort. It's a demanding ski and the testers noted that the absorption could be better in variable terrain.
The Head Kore 93 W is made for performance. We would recommend this model to dynamic, good level skiers wanting to ski the piste and freeride.
Excellent on piste
Holds up in powder
Comfortable at high speeds...
Disliked: Stiff and demanding
Adaptation to terrain could be improved...