UCI approves Visma-Lease a Bike’s striking new helmet

For a second time, the sport's governing body has approved the Giro Aerohead II

Clock12:28, Monday 18th March 2024
Jonas Vinegaard (Visma-Lease a Bike) racing in the now approved (again) Giro Aerohead II

© Getty Images

Jonas Vinegaard (Visma-Lease a Bike) racing in the now approved (again) Giro Aerohead II

According to a report in the Belgian media, Visma-Lease a Bike have been given the go-ahead to keep using their new time trial helmet after the UCI approved the piece of kit.

The new Giro Aerohead II helmet made its debut at Tirreno-Adriatico and Paris-Nice earlier this month and caused a stir due to its outrageous design features.

Within hours of Jonas Vingegaard and his teammates showing off their new look the sport’s governing body had swung into motion, with tape measures and rulebooks at the ready as they issued a stern press release in which they called for an “in-depth analysis of the regulations governing the design and use of time trial helmets.”

The UCI was keen to look at several features of the helmet, with concerns around rider safety. The team stated, categorically that the kit passed all the required tests.

“First and foremost, the Giro Aerohead ll is a safe helmet, meeting all safety regulations,” Visma’s formal statement said at the time.

“Safety for our riders is paramount for both Giro and the team. For example, this helmet has a larger visor that allows riders to have better visibility. And MIPS (Multi-directional Impact Protection System) provides even better protection. Giro Sport Design developed the Aerohead II to meet all impact test requirements and safety certifications, which applies to all helmets ridden in competition.”

The severity of UCI's investigation statement was somewhat undermined by the fact that the UCI had already approved the helmet during the off-season but their investigation has now concluded, with reports that Visma-Lease a Bike can once again use the helmet, safely in the knowledge that the UCI have given it the green light once more.

"The International Cycling Union recognizes that there are no direct violations of the regulations, but is concerned about the current trend in which the priority is increasingly on performance and much less on safety," it said in a statement, according to the Belgian media outlet Sporza.

Sporza also reported that the helmet must be made available to the public by January 17, 2025. As yet, there's no indication on what the cost for the helmet might be.

"After that period, the prototype must be available for sale to everyone in accordance with the applicable conditions.”

Visma-Lease a Bike has yet to release a statement on the matter but the helmet’s next outing is likely to be at the Itzulia Basque Country in April, with the race including an individual time trial.

It’s unclear as of yet what fate will befall the helmets used by Bahrain-Victorious after their Rudy Project Windgream HL 85 helmet was also rounded up into the investigation alongside Poc’s Tempor.

For more of the latest from the pro peloton, visit our racing news page.

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