What is the consensus about these helmets? Do they ventilate as well as they advertise?
I'm looking to retired my Charles Owen and after countless summer days of sweating profusely in the poorly ventilated Charles Owen Gr8, I think it would be refreshing to not look like I had a shower after taking my helmet off. GPAs are not for me as I feel like they make people look like flies with flat heads...
Nonetheless, I am really interested in these helmets. They appear to be all the rage in Europe. I really like the grey. Would that be frowned upon in the equitation ring?
I haven't tried the KEPs, but if you want ventilation, I LOVE my Samshield Shadow Matte. I think they're really classy looking, and the first time I rode in it, I couldn't get over how much air flowed through the helmet. I've gotten so many compliments on it and haven't had a sweaty head since. My GR8 was terrible, so I know where you're coming from.
If you have a Charles Owen-shaped head, try the AYR8. I found it to be much, much cooler (and also lower profile) than the GR8. I tried both KEP and Samshield and neither fit my head. I know someone with a KEP and they love it, for what that's worth.
I love Samshields, I've tried them on and ridden in a friends, but I don't own one and I have a AYR8 that I like, but prefer my GPA speed air to the AYR8 and only wear the AYR8 in the winter when it's cold. It's better than the GR8 but I still don't feel much difference. I personally HATE the look of the KEPs, but if it fits you and you like it then get it, but I would suggest the black over the gray, because that will be more appropriate for eq and hunters than the gray. KEPs however are not quite as common as Samshields, COs and GPAs.
I think they are nice helmets. The grill in front I find a little obnoxious but otherwise seems like it would ventilate as advertised (I've only ever picked these helmets up to look at them, never tried one on).
I always have to throw in my vote for OneK's-it is seriously the lightest, most ventilated helmet I've owned that looks good on (no mushroom head) and is extremely affordable. Its built in the same shell as the Samshield though, so if Samshield's don't fit you I doubt a OneK will either.