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Review: Bontrager Ballista

The Ballista, looking stealth .

Named after the ancient Greek weapon that used to launch large crossbows across great distances, it’s appropriate that when you put on the Bontrager Ballista you feel ready to sprint at weaponized speeds. Immediately when you strap on the Ballista it’s hard not to giggle like a kid. With its slim profile and aero shaping, this helmet looks fast and feels even faster once you get moving.

Clear channels from front to back

Out on the road, the Bontrager Ballista does an exceptional job of passing air across your head. With only three vents across the front you feel a lot more wind then you would expect from most aero road helmets. Ramp up the pace over 30km/h and you really begin notice how the vents at the front and the back work in conjunction with each other. Looking through the back of the helmet you can see how the rear channels sit just above the Occipital bone to allow much better flow.

We tested this aero helmet in some of the worst conditions of the summer, 28 degrees but feeling like 37 at a weekday crit. If there was any day that we were going to feel some overheating it was that day. But the Ballista and it’s large central channels lived up to their billing and drew tons of air into the helmet and out the back.  Even on days without racing this was a cool enough option to ride with even if speed wasn’t going to be the theme of that day’s ride.

BOA dial allows for micro-adjustments

In terms of sizing the Bontrager Ballista fits true to size, we found with a 55cm head circumference the size small helmet was a great fit. For micro-adjustments, the helmet uses a Boa dial to help riders get the fit just right. If there was a fit feature we’d like to see added it would be some vertical adjustability on the rear Occipital pads.

The Bontrager Ballista retails for CAD$270  and can be found at Bontrager dealers across Canada.