2020 Head Supershape Rally

If you’re looking for a World Cup style carving ski in a more user-friendly shape, the 2020 Head Supershape I.Rally is a perfect ski for you. At 76 mm underfoot, the skis have more width and shape than the race-room skis, but the build and the concept are basically the same. There’s a bit less metal than in the racers, but that’s probably a good thing for the majority of the skiers out there on the planet. Still, you get a wood core, a Graphene laminate, and two metal layers. This leads to a strong ski with a ton of power. Best suited for advanced and expert skiers who love to carve turns, the I.Rally is a wonderfully constructed ski with a love for angles and g-forces. The turn radius really starts at the very tip and does not let go until the very end of the tail. This fully-cambered and tip to tail ski allows you to size down and still get the best performance. Since the ski has a very long running length, the longest size is a 177, and that’s good for very big skiers. At 170 cm, the turn radius is 13.7-meters, so expect to be on edge pretty much all the time. Not the best flat running skis. Our testers were enamored with the edge grip and the quickness of the Head Supershape I.Rally.

Ryan Daniel would prefer a longer length, but the 177 was just fine, especially given the build and shape. But that didn’t stop him from scoring the ski high for quickness and maneuverability. In addition, he had an overall impression score of 4 out of 5, so it’s pretty clear that Ryan is a fan of the Rally. “This thing likes to turn! Not a great ski for going straight. Great for groomers and light crud. Makes all-radius turns from tight slalom turns to light pressure GS turns. Great for an (older) ex-racer.” I like how Ryan notes that you have to lightly pressure the GS turns—it shows a clear and fundamental understanding of how a shorter-radius carving ski should work.

6 foot 5 Marcus Shakun felt pretty comfortable testing the 177, although he’d prefer a longer length if they offered one. He had some pretty high scores regardless, giving the Rally 5’s out of 5 for stability, quickness, maneuverability, and edge hold. These categories are right in the Rally’s wheelhouse, so it’s nice to see that the ski lives up to its reputation. “It is super-lively and energetic. You have to be on your game as it is so quick.” Certainly, this has a lot to do with the 76 mm waist width, as the narrower waists do require a lot of attention. Marcus was even so bold as to take this thing off-trail and into the bumps and woods. He notes that it is “quick in the woods and bumps, but the stiff tail doesn’t make it forgiving.” And echoing Ryan’s sentiments as to the comfort of the ski in different turn shapes, Marcus says the Rally “can hold medium-radius turns all the way or snap out slalom turns. Stable at speed with razor-sharp edge hold.” Nice imagery!

The front-side category is a really fun one. There’s a ton of differences in the way that a lot of these skis are shaped and built, and that gives us a lot of material to work with, especially when it comes to a test like this. We get to see the similarities and differences, both material and philosophical. The Rally falls on the end of high-performance in all realms, and it’s awesome to see a ski excel in so many areas of front-side carving.

Testers

Marcus Shakun

Age: 39Height: 6'5"Weight: 225 lbs.

Ski Style: Powerful, but playful with the terrain

Josh Wolfgang

Age: 23/24Height: 6'1"Weight: 190 lbs.

Ski Style: Fast and carvy with a love for the fall line

Ryan Daniel

Age: 36Height: 5'11.5"Weight: 180 lbs.

Ski Style: Fast and carvy

18 Comments on the “2020 Head Supershape Rally”

  1. Great review! This message is for Ryan. I’m 5′ 11” and an ex-racer myself. I’m considering the 170cm . . . why did feel the 177 was still too short and would have like even longer? I’d appreciate to hear your thoughts on length. Thank you! Tom~ tomiselin@gmail.com

    1. Hi Sean!
      Not much difference besides graphics. If you find one at a good deal in your size, I’d say jump on it. Have fun!
      SE

    1. Hi Tessa!
      It’s a great ski for precise and aggressive skiers who love edge grip and stability. They love to be engaged and in a carved turn. Hope that helps!
      SE

  2. Hello,
    I like to ski on relatively steep terrain, groomed black or red pistes, and i am looking for skis that will help me control the speed of my descent with short and condident turns. To be able to slow down on a red piste and have fun with firmly edged turns.

    I now have the rossignol xperience 84ai and they seem to like speed, find it hard to control them on steep terrain or when there are a lot of people on a red slope.

    Do you think the i.rally or any other similar ski will do a better job compared to my 84’s?
    Best,
    Gas

    1. Hi Gas!
      They’ll keep you turning, that’s for sure. It’s a great tip to tail feel in those Rally’s, with more precision than the 84’s. They love to be on edge, so if you’re looking to control your speed through your turning, this will be a great match for you. It’s narrower, so the edge grip will be better as well. Have fun!
      SE

      1. thank you very much for your reply.

        It would be great for your website to connect your reviews, such as the above, to the product page (where you sell these skis for example) here: https://www.skiessentials.com/2020-head-supershape-i-rally-skis-w-prd-12-gw-bindings.html
        And the other way of course. I was on the product page and could not locate your review which is a shame as you do such a great job. Or also add the video link where you talk about skis on this category(this one: https://youtu.be/NPHZctqtJ5g). The two guys talking there are great to watch and they seem to know and enjoy their job on the same time.

        Regarding these skis, my only concern is that many say they are very demanding and unforgiving. Although i am very active on the slopes, i am not sure i would like to spend my whole day fighting to hold the edge. Of course, i could turn to my Rossignol 84 ai after midday but taking two pairs on a ski day is kind of a huge luxury i think.

      2. Thanks for the feedback, Gas!
        Agreed on the luxury end. But if you’re looking for that high-end snap and rebound, you’ve got to put up with the demand on the other end. I don’t think they’re terribly abusive, but rather they prefer skier input. If you try to slide, they’ll want to grab, so it is kind of a back and forth. But again, they’ll make much, much cleaner turns than the 84. Have you looked at something like the Volkl Deacon 80? Might slide right in the middle of what you’ve got. Have fun!
        SE

  3. thank you very much for your reply above. I had an almost full day test with these skis and you are absolutely right on that there is a trade-off. These skis are amazing in terms of stability and edge grip. Nothing could shake them. Especially on steep terrain or icy conditions, they will be your guardian angel 🙂
    But as you correctly expressed it “they will want to grab” even on a chilling blue slope, they will ask for your feedback or guidance, they will never let you relax and this is something that fatigued me as i like to be on the slopes the full day and enjoy the mountain (i am 43 years old and this should be also taken into account, in good shape but not an athlete). I also tested the Rossis REACT HP, easier to be on but more or less like my experience 84 in terms of edge grip and stability.
    thank you very much again for your comments and recommendation

  4. Bought a pair of these at 170’s..coming off my cherished K2 Recon Apache I’ve been on for 10 years.. This is my personal opinion (only).. I’m 60 yrs old male, skiing for almost 40 years, advanced skiier, I ski the East, ice, crud, and the very, very occasional powdery piste… I’ve been on these Heads going on my 4th trip.. And I’ve got to tell you, they are demanding… The first time I tried to lay them down hard to stop, I think I pushed a foot of granular into a slump at the stopping point… Like heavy razors digging into the mix… The problem is this is very very demanding on my old quads… What I’ve found is these skis will require about double the energy you usually exert on the slopes… I’m not a ski tech guru, so don’t understand a lot of the science behind the differing boards… Before buying, demo a pair if you can… If you’re over 40, heed my advice… Look before you cross… These bad boys will make you pay the price of ownership with a real workout…

  5. 44 yo eastern, advanced, all mountain skier with a love of quick turns, tight trees, and steeps. Been skiing on a pair of these from 2015 – 2020: hands-down best skis I have ever owned. I truly credit these skis with leveling up my abilities beyond what any other ski was capable of. Previous sticks include Salomon X-Wing Tornados I took down Tuckerman’s Ravine and multiple trips out west, what the Titans lacked in sidecut and turn initiation, the Rallys deliver in spades. I demoed nearly a dozen “all mountain” skis from a variety of other manufacturers and while others may be lighter and more maneuverable in tight spaces, nothing, I mean nothing combines the explosive energy out of the turn at speed with quick edge-edge grip like the iRally. You feel like you’re riding on rails and can easily get kicked right out the turn with how much power the ski provides when pushed to their limit.

    As a comparison, nearly ever shop I visited told me I should just go with the Titans as a better all mountain set, but I tried them and they felt downright boring after taking the Rallys out, just can’t give up the power of these skis out of the turn. No, they absolutely do not like to go straight, but if that’s all you want to do there’s plenty of race sticks out there to grab out of the gate.

    If you like turns, if you’re an advanced intermediate looking for a ski that will *push* you to the next level of on-piste turns and steeps, this set’s got your back. Love these skis and for the first time I’ll be picking up yet another pair of these this season after demoing a pair of 2019s and knowing Head’s kept all the best attributes of the ski, in a slightly more approachable, less nervous ski down the line.

  6. Hi guys,
    I’m looking for a frontside carving ski to complement by Brahma 88 and Rustler 9. Strong Intermediate skier. I ski primarily east coast groomers. Wouldn’t call myself an aggressive skier, but I’m aspiring to be better and planning to spend as much time in the mountains as I can this coming season!!
    I see this next ski as perhaps a learning tool where I can continue to improve my technique with lessons. I realize that my Brahma and Rustler, while fun, may not be the best learning tool. I’m intrigued by C’s comments above about how he credits the Rally with “leveling up my abilities beyond what any other ski was capable”. Apologies but I’m all over the place right now in terms of what I want/need, but considering this Head Rally (or the less aggressive v8 since I’m an intermediate), DPS Cassiar 79 or 82, Stockli Laser AX, Atomic Redster X9 WB or maybe one of the Rossignol’s. Any quick thoughts on what I should consider? Any of the above or something else? Speed is less important to me, but I hope to get better with my carving technique and turns on steeps. I’m also looking for something relatively light as I’m 160lbs 5 8′. Thank you in advance..

    1. Hi Jerry!
      Pretty amazing tip to tail edge contact with that Rally! I think the mid-70’s is a good place to be if you’re looking for that front-side specific ski, but something in the ~80mm underfoot range is fine as well. The V8 isn’t going to wow you if you’ve been on a Brahma–quite plasticky feeling and light, certainly compared to the Blizzard. I’d put a strong vote for the Stockli, just from a high-end perspective–certainly you will not be left wanting more! The Redster has more of that race-feel, and I think the DPS offers something different than what you’re looking for. The Rally and the Redster are pretty comparable, and are certainly at that high-end of the carving spectrum. I’d also take a look at the Volkl Deacon 80, as that has strong carving, good energy, and a lighter weight. I think that’s your more well-rounded carver versus the single-mindedness of the Redster and Rally. Of those three, you’re going to find something you love. Hope that helps!
      SE

  7. Thank you! I think I will pull the trigger on the Stockli AX following more research after your suggestions above. Can you confirm that there is no difference between 2020 and 2021 besides graphics? Given my height and weight 5 8, 155lb, I think that the 168 looks to be a good length. Or should I look at the 161cm because this is front side— what is the equivalent to my brahma which is 166cm? Finally one last question- it looks like you are pairing the Stockli AX with the Marker Race Xcell 12 binding. Any thoughts on any other bindings I should consider and whether a demo binding makes sense? Thank you!

    1. Hi Jerry!
      No difference other than graphics for this year. The XCell 12 has more of a race mentality so it has a narrower profile that matches the width of the ski. While we could put a Marker Griffon or a Tyrolia Attack 13 on it if you wanted to swap, they are a bit wider and built for wider skis, so there is a bit of hang-over, especially in the toe, but they still work just fine. I’d stick to the 168–161 just sounds too short! Demo bindings are just too heavy for a setup like this, and while you do get the adjustability and a bit of extra lift, I don’t think it’s worth the weight. Have fun!
      SE

  8. Once again .. The test skiers you use are not the average body type for most skiers. Woman and shorter males also buy high-performance skies . Your test report is less valuable for most skiers .. My guess is skiers about 5 foot 6 is the 163 cm model. Please .. hire a broader range of body types for a more accurate report on skiers needs. Do not continue to ignore aggressive females.

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