Test / Review Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL

Mini Head - SkiReviewer

The Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL is the racing SL tool for the general public from Head’s perspective. Black and yellow war paintings distinguish this particular ski among many other racing Slalom skis. Almost every single racing ski has the aggressive collection of colors and draws related to the competition. Numbers in circles, colorful and shiny stripes, checkered flags sometimes in strategic locations are some of the decorations found in racing skis. Head has gone simplistic for the last seasons. For the Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL the background is black, covered by a strong yellow stripe and some letters giving more sound and compelling looks.

Head WorldCup Rebels i.SL © Head – HTM Sport GmbH

Head WorldCup Rebels i.SL © Head – HTM Sport GmbH

This skis’ sidecut is quite deep and very slalomish. The shovel starts at 122 mm in the 165 cm model. It follows a 66 mm waist closed by a quite wide 107 mm tail. Anyone willing to carve all turns at a more than considerable speed in an endless twist dance of short turns will find a good ally in the Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL. So the highlight is that clean cut carved turns will come easily. The not so good part is its tail size, which is considerably wide. Head’s designers have solved this “issue” (if it can be considered a real one) with the ski’s reactions letting the skier get into the new turn almost effortlessly. It slides but still has a slight tendency to engage the edge, so be aware of it when sliding the tail in the pure old fashioned wedeln style. There are plenty of options in choosing the right size, starting at 150 cm for the shortest model to the 170 cm for the longest one. We find one different size every 5 cm, so everyone will find the right pair.

As for technologies, the Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL has all the goodies one may expect from a product of this kind. The untrusted ones aside (‘Intelligence’, ‘Kers’ idiotic chip stickers and other non-sense), the real ones are: an special sintered run base called UHM C base; a decent plate from Tyrolia as an interface between the boot and the ski; the Speedflex Plate 13, coupled by the Freeflex Pro 14 bindings; a classic camber that Head calls in pure fashion the “Rebels camber” and a sandwich construction with the best suited materials. The problem with Head is that they do not explain that much about what they include. A sandwich construction is not the best one per se. What matters is inside and Head does very little to let others know. So you have to blindly trust them. Do you?

Without being on the front line of the FIS skis, the Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL is a very good opportunity to tackle the Slalom discipline in a quite close position avoiding the complications inherent to the FIS models. It carves so easily that sometimes it surprises you how easy is to engage the edge and carve anything you might throw at it. There is a downside for the purists, though. The ski feels very, very assisted. If you are looking for something on the real edge and you are ready to roll the dice pushing the envelope, just go for the FIS model. If not, and that is 99% of you folks, just choose the Head Worldcup Rebels i.SL and put a smile on your face.


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