For the 2017/2018 season, our partner HEAD Ski added a new ski series to its product range: the KORE collection. With all kinds of innovations, technologies, materials and unique designs, HEAD Ski has taken a step into the future of freeriding.

HEAD KORE 99 was launched in early 2018, so it’s time we spoke to you about the KORE models, their constructions and the differences between them. We’ve also talked to René Harrer, Sales and Marketing Director at HEAD Ski, who’s given us some highlights and insights into the HEAD KORE ski series.

HEAD KORE ski - construction

The main design concept behind these new freeride skis was minimalism, i.e. packing only the essential into every ski. It’s for this reason that the brand has done away with the conventional plastic surface and replaced it with a layer of compressed polyester fleece.

The result is an open high-tech construction that saves on weight, making the ski a real featherweight compared to the other models on the market. One peculiarity of this new ski model is its combination of different innovative materials. HEAD-Ski-Freeride The core of the skis is made of light but extremely stiff Karuba wood. There is also a Koroyd element underneath the binding. Koroyd is a material that looks a little bunched up drinking straws. It comes with two big benefits: First, the hollow “straws” save the ski some weight. Second, Koroyd absorbs vibrations. Both of these properties result in a lightweight ski with a fantastic performance.

Apart from this, the tip and tail have been reinforced with Graphene. Graphene is the hardest and lightest material we know of on the planet and it’s used in HEAD tennis rackets too. In order to guarantee great torsional stiffness, the skis also come with a layer of triaxle weave carbon fibre underneath. Carbon and Graphene offer you full control at all times. The innovative construction of the HEAD KORE ski makes it light, well-damped and stiff. This reflects HEAD’s three design priorities when creating this series: lightness, flotation and control - everything you need for a superb freeride ski, right? What do you think of the high-tech highlights of this ski?

HEAD KORE ski - the different models

As is typical of HEAD Ski, the KORE series has four different models. Just like the i.Supershapes, the KORE models are colour coded. The main body of all four models is actually matte black, but the part between the bindings and the underside of the skis come in different colours.

Apart from the four models we mention below, there is also the orange HEAD KORE 87, which is for children. It’s the ideal ski for the first few times off-piste. The number at the end of the name is an indicator of the waist size of the ski, i.e. the narrowest part. Continue reading to find out the other differences between the models. HEAD-KORE-Skis

The yellow HEAD KORE 93

The HEAD KORE 93 is ideal for moderately experienced alpine skiers who are new to freeriding. This model is easy to handle both on and off the piste. Its low weight makes it a great companion for ski touring too.

With the series’ narrowest model, you’ll enjoy dynamic, playful descents down every slope. Whether you’re on a groomed ski area or on deep powder, the KORE 93 feels at home on every terrain. If you’re looking for a freeride beginner’s ski that performs on all terrains, the 93 is the right choice for you.

The red HEAD KORE 99

If you want an even better all-rounder than the 93, check out the KORE 99, first released in 2018. It remains stiff and extremely easy to glide on powder, so it’s perfect for freeriding, but its low weight also makes it a brilliant ski tourer. The new HEAD KORE 99 also impresses on groomed slopes.

We highly recommend the new 99 to the most multi-talented skiers among you. Spend the morning climbing up the mountain and the afternoon gliding back down on untouched powder, or enjoy a full day on groomed slopes - with the KORE 99, the choice is yours!

The green HEAD KORE 105

The 105 model impresses with its agility and damping on deep snow, so you have full control on the steepest slopes and can show off your skills in the backcountry. This ski can also perform on the piste, but it feels more at home on powder.

Calling all experienced freeriders: The KORE 105 is the model for you! No powder-covered field is safe from you when you’re zooming down the mountain with these skis.

The blue HEAD KORE 117

The KORE 117 is the widest model of the KORE series. It’s particularly loved by professional athletes. It’s one of the lightest skis of its kind and it feels at home on any deep snow slope. Whether you’re Heli-skiing or taking part in the Freeride World Tour, you’ll be astounded by the performance you get from the HEAD KORE 117.

The 117 model is ideal for ambitious freeriders looking for complete freedom. HEAD-Ski-KORE-Freeride

Interview with René Harrer about the HEAD KORE ski

The new freeride KORE series was released by HEAD during last year’s 2017/2018 season. What ideas lie behind the concept of this new freeride product line? What was the company’s approach to production?

Freeride skis have been somewhat neglected in the past, until now. We thought: either we hit the market with something completely new and unique or we carry on going as we have so far and contribute nothing meaningful to this sector.
We decided to go with option 1 because we believe in this sector of the market.

How long did the project last from concept, design, technology incorporation, etc. until product release?

In total it took one and a half years. It involved lots of ideas, lots of trying things out, lots of testing. We also had several exchanges with freeride athletes, like James Heim, who were a significant part of the development process. HEAD-KORE-105-Ski-1 How’s the KORE series different from normal HEAD skis? What makes this product series special?

We wanted to make something new and be different from the rest. That’s why decided not to use any surface for the ski and keep the design as simple as possible, focussing only on the essentials. This took a lot of courage because the surface is where all the graphics happen. It was an exciting decision and, looking back on it, definitely the right thing to do.

Are you happy with the success of the KORE product launch?

We can now count this as the most successful product launch since the release of the carving ski. For us, this confirms that we’ve done a good job, and we now have the obligation to continue working in this direction.

The KORE series consists of 4 models. The latest was added to the collection in 2018. What’s the purpose of the new model and who is it for?

The new KORE 99 covers a relatively broad segment that we hadn’t catered for before now. You can class this ski as all-mountain without problems, which means that it’s perfect for on-piste action on fresh powder.

What’s your personal favourite from the KORE freeride series?

I tend to use the KORE 105 most. You can have a blast on deep snow but the ski is still versatile enough for piste fun.