Test / Review Head WorldCup Rebels i.Speed

Mini Head - SkiReviewer

The Head Worldcup Rebels i.Speed is the GS interpretation for the general public from this American founded company. Despite the fancy marketing words such as the “Intelligence” and “Kers” technologies, it all makes sense at the first look. Racing looks, with a narrow shape, finished by a not very aggressive cut tail are the things your eyes will discover first. The magic chip stickers are well placed behind the binding so you will see them soon. Don’t try to plug your iPhone or Android device, there is no port for them, which is a pity, don’t you think?

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

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

The ski’s shape is a quite narrow one which is a clear sign of the designer’s intentions. The Head Worldcup Rebels i.Speed has been made to be fast on hard packed groomed slopes. With just 65 mm under the foot, the waist width is where all this kind of skis should be. The shovel is 113 mm wide in the longest model, falling to 110 mm in the shortest one. Sizes come from 185 to 165 cm, stopping at every 5 cm to add a new size. So you will have five sizes to choose in between, which is kind of cool. The tail closes the shape at 94 mm width for the 175 cm and above models, and at 93 mm for the 170 and 165 cm length models.

The Head Worldcup Rebels i.Speed is one of the best in its category, but don’t get it wrong. You have to have a good consolidated technique and the will for speed. Otherwise, you will have wasted your money on a pair of skis not aimed at you. If you comply with those prerequisites, you will find a good ally in the Head Worldcup Rebels i.Speed. Stable at high speed, easy to engage, predictable, nimble and a bit demanding are the main characteristics. It is quite surprising how “easy” to bend this ski is, but don’t be fooled. At the right speed, you will enjoy this capability and thank Head designers, because soon you’ll find yourself in situations you’ve never been before. There is another plus, which is the tail. It holds really well but you can slide it too with no big effort.

As for technologies, the Head Worldcup Rebels i.Speed 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: a 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?

As we always recommend, choose a long size and you’d better take a look at our Ski Size Chart where you will find some clues. As a rule of thumb, a + 5 cm is almost a must in this category for a standard skier. If you are a heavy, powerful or experienced skier you can go for the + 10 cm choice. Be aware, longer skis run faster and these days many ski resorts can be crowded on many weekends and holidays. This also counts in the decision making process.

So all in all, the Head Worldcup Rebels i.Speed is a more than decent election when speaking about GS skis for the general public. If the brand’s marketing doesn’t bother you and you are an experienced skier with good technique looking for speed, this is it in Head’s catalogue.


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