Once upon a time Richie Schley did a whole bunch for mountain biking, there is no doubt about that, but in the last few years he's contributed pretty much nothing, unless you call riding for some shitty German company ground-breaking. I mean some of his video parts are pretty darn memorable and he did invent the jump that launched 1000 imitators. But today this helmet showed up in the office and as I was photographing it upstairs in the studio I realised that good old Richie is back! I mean this new IXS helmet is pretty damn dialled. For starters they didn't call it enduro, they called it trail and that dammit it is what it is! It's got a nice silhouette and rad colour-matched straps and buckles, yet it doesn't get all crazy on us like some other recent helmet releases (I'm looking at you Bluegrass), it meets the European safety standards and features full in-mould coverage for optimized absorption and weight, there's 22 vents and a pretty solid visor that is designed to break free easily when crashed on.
We've only had it in the office for an hour or two but the fitment is spot on and the dial has a tonne of adjustment in it. So much so that the helmet only needs to come in two sizes, S/M (54-58cm), M/L (58-62cm) but it doesn't look stupidly big when your head is at the smaller end of the scale. The dual density dial (easy to grab in gloves) also has three height positions and its actual retention system is made from slightly stretchy rubber so it never feels too tight and avoids those pressure points that some helmets have.
We haven't had a chance to get it out on the trail yet but it looks like a well thought-out winner and we will be bringing you our thoughts on this bad boy after a few months of testing (and hopefully a crash or two) in issue 57.
Oh and unlike IXS stuff we have showed you in the past you will actually be able to buy this helmet locally. IXS now have a distributor here by way of Christchurch based Marleen Wholesalers and you will be able to find the helmet in stores now, retail on the Trail RS is $170.