The Wing57 helmet is the newest helmet from Rudy Project, and follows the popular Wingspan model that was launched in 2009. The Cannondale Pro Cycling team recently used it during the Tour de France TTT, and on Sunday Ironman World Champion Pete Jacobs will be battling his competition at the European Ironman Championships in Frankfurt, Germany wearing one of these new helmets. At a quick glance the Wing57 does not look that different from the Wingspan, but upon closer inspection several distinct new features are noticeable. Our technical editor Gregory Kopecky will write a thorough review of it once he has one in his hands, but here is a quick overview.
The helmet is reasonably short and has 2 distinctive side vents. According to Rudy Project these vents are designed to straighten the airflow over the rear of the helmet.
From the front the Wing57 looks indeed similar to the Wingspan, but it appears to be narrower and features a Dorsal Ridge. Airflow can be adjusted by either leaving the vent open, using a net for limited flow or closing it completely. A fully removable optical shield/visor in smoke grey is part of the package.
Much of the testing of the Wing57 took place at the Pininfarina wind tunnel in Grugliasco, Italy under the guidance of John Cobb.
A variety of helmets were tested and compared to the new Wing57 and some significant drag savings were claimed over some main competitors. (see graph at the very bottom)
According to Rudy Project the new Wing57 works equally well for an A back and a B back type athlete, with an add-on Jet Stream custom tail section that is included.
The Cannondale Pro team with their Rudy Project Wing57 helmets in action during the stage 4 Team Time Trial in Nice, France.
The Cannondale squad ended up in 13th position, 34 seconds behind the leading Orica Green Edge team.
This Black-Lime Fluo edition is another color variant of this new Rudy Project Wing57 helmet. The Wing57 will also be available in White-Silver as featured above in this story and in Black-Yellow Fluo.
The view from above shows the distinct differences of the tails.
The grey visor that is included is pictured in this image from Rudy Project.
According to Rudy Project "The result of a comparison with leading rival helmets, obtained by measuring the resistance of a representative sample of racers with differently shaped backs and different wind yaw angles, have shown the Wing57to be the helmet with the best aerodynamic performance." Screen shot below is from Rudy Project promotional brochure.
The helmet will be available later this year and unlike the Wingspan it will be offered in 2 sizes. S-M which is roughly 54-58cm and L that should fit 59-61cm.
According to a Rudy Project spokesperson, "The helmet will retail in between around 400.-$ +/- (TBD) around 300.-€ in Europe and will include the JET STREAM (Tail) and the VISOR in smoke grey. There will extra visors available for purchase, determined colors for now Multilaser orange as seen at the Tour. But we are looking into offering further options as well like clear etc."