If you fancy emulating Bradley Wiggins time trial success for Team Sky, the Kask Bambino may be your first step.
While no substitute for natural talent, inhuman training, and a flat-backed position to become little more than an extension of bike, this sleek little unit covered the Wiggins cranium as he powered to victories against the clock in Paris-Nice, the Tour du Romandie, the Criterium du Dauphine, and, of course, the Tour de France.
The Bambino hit the shops today, and, following a tip-off from the brand’s UK importer, Velobrands, we headed to Condor Cycles, who were kind enough to lend us one from stock.
Initial impressions? Sleek describes its appearance. The visor is impressively integrated into the exterior, conveniently attached by five, circular magnets into a recessed plane just above the brow, making it easy to remove and attach.
Inside, three central pads line the top of the helmet, made from Kask’s 3D Padding, whose ventilated structure (with an appearance not unlike honeycombe) is claimed to reduce head-to-pad contact area by 70 per cent. Further padding can be found in the ‘roof’ of the helmet and above the brow.
Two s-shaped pads are positioned on the side panels, just in front of the rider’s ears: perhaps Wiggo’s inspiration for his famous sideburns. All can be detached from their Velcro moorings for washing.
The Bambino is secured on the head by nylon side straps anchored in the shell, which pass round the ears. In common with increasing number of high-end helmets (Specialized’s Prevail, for example) these side straps do not offer adjustment; the chin strap, and a strap at the rear of the helmet do, however, making it a fairly straightforward process to find a secure fit. We liked the leatherette chin strap on the Mojito we tested earlier this year and are pleased to see it included here.
The helmet and visor tipped our scales at 379 grams. The visor measured 9cms at its deepest point, and 6cm from the bridge of the nosepiece to the brow.
It costs £299 and is available in one size (medium: 48-58cm) until February 2013 when a large model will be made available. Two colours are offered (black with a white stripe, and white with a black stripe). It’s supplied with a two-handled carry case with name and address label.