British cycling apparel brand Rapha has teamed up with Swedish helmet specialists POC for a new limited-edition line of head protection: the Omne Air Mips and Ventral Lite helmets. The former aims for a balance between Mips-based protection and comfort on all-day rides, while the latter is optimized for race days at less than 200g. In fact, the Ventral Lite is the current helmet of choice on the WorldTour for pro cycling team Ef Education-Easy Post.
Rapha + POC Omne Air Mips: comfort, protection, performance
The Omne Air Mips utilizes Mips Integra, a system that revolves around close collaboration between the Mips design teams and helmet manufacturers. The helmet uses a three-point cradle system combined with fully adjustable clips and straps to dial in fit. There’s even an eye garage for easy sunglasses storage.
To round out the features, Rapha and POC make a nod towards cooling with ventilation channels that run in an unbroken arc from front to back.
You can get your hands on one for $190. The Omne Air Mips is U.K., E.U., and U.S. safety regulation certified. Note — the helmet is not safety certified in Australia. It comes in six sizes (small, medium, and large, all available in wide or regular fit) with Dark Navy and Stone colorways broken by abstract white patterning.
Rapha + POC Ventral Lite: minimalist weight savings
If gram shaving for races is your game, the Ventral Lite might be of more interest. The helmet is stripped down in all the areas it safely can be: it has a lightweight liner, a unibody shell, webbed straps, and a minimalist fit adjustment system. Like the Omne Air Mips, it comes in wide and regular fits in small, medium, and large. But it’s the sub-200g weight that really catches the attention.
EF Education-EasyPost’s Lachlan Morton said in a statement that the light weight translates to valuable comfort.
“I like the helmet a lot and use it day to day. I like that it’s so light. Especially when doing long-distance rides, every gram really makes a difference. It reduces a lot of strain on my neck as well as being very well ventilated, but for me the weight is the biggest thing which ultimately leads to greater comfort,” Morton said.
The Ventral Lite comes in black and white and costs $325.