Valentino Rossi AGV Pista GP Soleluna (Qatar) helmet

Valentino Rossi AGV Pista GP Soleluna (Qatar) helmet

Valentino Rossi AGV Pista GP Soleluna (Qatar) helmet

This is the Valentino Rossi classic SoleLuna helmet design that he wore in Qatar a couple of seasons ago. This version of the Soleuna design varies slightly from the one Valentino wore for the bulk of the 2014 and 2015 season with slightly darker colours, and the slight difference in the ’46’ logo on the sides of the chin.

Other than that, this is the classic Rossi Sun and Moon (Soleluna) helmet design that was created by Aldo Drudi that Rossi wore for the 2015 MotoGP season. It features a radiating sun at the front of the helmet with sun-rays that flow towards the back of the helmet where they intersect with a dark crescent moon. An iconic and beautiful looking Valentino Rossi helmet design.

It is available now in the flagship AGV race helmet model – the Pista GP.

This helmet has been out for a while now, so you won’t need to pay the full price for this Pista GP helmet (and trust me, you don’t want to pay full price, these bad boys are expensive), so check the links at the bottom of the page to fins the best places to buy it.

Valentino Rossi in Qatar

Official product description of the Valentino Rossi Qatar Pista GP helmet:
The pinnacle of racing motorcycle helmet technology; the Pista GP takes motorbike full face helmet performance to a new level. The pure carbon shell is extremely light and well balanced and is matched with class beating aerodynamics. Add to the mix a unique locking visor system that offers a 9% larger aperture and 15° improvement in vision. On the inside is a brand new concept in helmet fit; the seam free linings are fully adjustable (with both the “rabbits ears” system and included adjustment kit) enabling complete personalisation.

It was designed, developed and tested by AGV and Valentino Rossi himself with one single aim; to create a helmet that offers the ultimate protection for racing. Using Finite Elements Analysis (FEM) enabled developers to reach previously unseen standards in terms of protection, comfort and ergonomics.

The new integrated Ventilation system (IVS) provides an improved airflow of over 193% compared to its predecessor the GP-Tech. Air intakes are in the “always open” position with protective metal frames and mesh guards. Plastic covers are available for bad weather. Large rear spoiler that has been wind tunnel optimized for maximum aerodynamic performance and ventilation at high speed. The spoiler is designed to detach from the helmet in the event of an accident to increase passive safety. There is a quick release system that allows tool free visor removal and replacement. The visor mechanism is 71% smaller than the GP-Tech. Front microlock visor locking system that reduces the risk of accidental opening, even in the event of an accident. Field of vision increased by 15° to the horizon and optimized for riding over the tank.

The inner liner is fully removable and washable. No stitching is exposed in sensitive areas and it is all padded with variable density foam. 3D cheek pads with sanitising treatment, variable density foam and integrated neck roll for improved comfort and sound proofing Weight 1.275g (+/- 50g) for size Medium

  • Exernal shell in CA (100% Carbon fiber) in 4 sizes. Inner EPS shell in 4 sizes
  • IVS (Integrated Ventilation System) ventilation with large air ducts hollowed into theshell and vents which direct air to the rider’s head
  • Ventilation system optimised in wind tunnel and consisting of 4 front vents (3 at the top and 1 on the chin guard) and 2 rear extractors
  • Air intakes with protective metal frames and mesh are in the “always open” position. Racing plugs are available for bad weather
  • Large rear spoiler optimised in a wind tunnel to maximise aerodynamic performance and ventilation, even at high speed. Spoiler designed to detach from the helmet in the event of an accident to increase passive safety
  • New visor mechanism in metal with swivel opening. Rapid visor release system requiring no tools and allowing the visor to be removed and replaced in seconds
  • Visor Lock System (VLS) that reduces the risk of accidental opening in the event of an accident. The visor meets Class 1 optical standards with a thickness up to 3.3 mm
  • Breathable, micro-perforated Lycra® crown pad with concave 3D structure that is pre-shaped in a single piece moulded around the contours of the rider’s head thanks
    to Rabbit System. No stitching in sensitive areas and padded with multi-density foam.
  • Option of personalising the fit of the crown pad. Can be customised at the area around the back of the neck with the insertion of a removable foam pad
  • 3D Shalimar® cheek pads with multi-density foam. Inner liners covered by three patents. Possibility to customize cheek pads fit with the removable foam inserts.
  • Removable nose guard. Double D retention system

Image gallery of the Valentino Rossi Pista GP Qatar helmet:

Watch AGV breaking down the AGV Pista GP helmet is this video overview:

Our Review of the AGV Pista GP helmet:

Overview:
The AGV Pista GP is AGV’s flagship helmet in their race category and it replaces the GP-Tech that was their race class helmet for many years. The Pista GP helmet is a product of the racetrack and it doesn’t care about your daily commute, this is a helmet that really comes to life at high speed or on a race track. It is the first real commitment from AGV to create something new and revolutionary since they were acquired by Dainese. Don’t be fooled into thinking that this is an update on the very popular GP-Tech helmet, the Pista GP is a completely new helmet that has been built from the ground up, and the differences between the GP-Tech and the Pista GP can be seen at pretty much every level. Let’s look at a few of them and break it all down:

Shell:
The shell is carbon fiber, and if you get to see a Pista GP without graphics and the various painted designs on the shell then you will appreciate how beautiful it looks, all the seams and connections are practically invisible so the whole shell looks like a single moulded piece of carbon fiber. The shell is basically flawless and the lightweight nature of the carbon fiber construction makes it a real pleasure to hold and handle.

The helmet uses four shell sizes to cater for all head sizes, and the Pista GP was ergonomically created by using lazers to scan the heads of actual people, including Valentino Rossi, and they used the resulting 3D models to then drive the design of the Pista GP shell. Many helmets usually create the shell first and then try and make the inside work as they want it, but the Pista GP can at least back up the claim that it was built from the inside out. This is evident from the moment you put the Pista GP on, the shape falls into the neutral / oval headshape which means it is rounder at the rear and tapers inwards as it moves around towards the front of the helmet.

The helmet is very comfortable to wear and the shape of the Pista GP is completely different from the GP-Tech – the shape of the Pista GP has clearly been informed by feedback from the racetrack, for example, the chin of the Pista GP is low slung (when compared to the GP-Tech) and it is designed to give more protection to riders when they are riding head-down at speed in a tucked position. There is a rear spoiler that is positioned to give extra downforce and stability when riding at speed and in a ‘head down’ position. Our experience was very positive and the general stability of the Pista GP felt solid at any speed. The spoiler can removed and it is also designed to detach in the event of a crash to ensure it doesn’t get snagged on anything if you find yourself sliding along the ground.

Weight:
So what does the AGV Pista GP weigh? The Pista GP is very light indeed and it comes out of the box at 1250g. Any non-essential mechanisms and flourishes are removed from the Pista GP in order to ensure it is as light as it can possibly be, and the carbon-fiber also contributes to the minimal weight of this helmet. The Pista GP is 1250g down from the 1560g of its predecessor the GP-Tech.

There doesn’t seem to be a compromise between lightness vs strength as AGV claim that the Pista GP absorbs 46% more energy in a crash than the AGV GP-Tech….and to be honest we didn’t fancy actually testing that, so we’ll just take their word on it.

Visor:
The visor on the AGV Pista GP is another area where it is clear that AGV have thrown away any previous influences from their earlier models and have redesigned it from scratch. The first major change that you will notice is the field of view…..it is huge. AGV have clearly spent a lot of time improving the visor aperture and it gives an incredible extra 15 degrees of vision. AGV have achieved this by lifting the natural horizon line up by 15 degrees, so even when you are in a tuck position with your head down on the tank you still get a clear field of vision and you aren’t obscured by the top of the visor aperture. This is clearly another feature that has come straight from the work that AGV’s R&D teams have done with riders like Valentino Rossi. When Rossi first started using the AGV Pista GP he famously said:

“Great aerodynamics, it feels like I am not wearing a helmet. Excellent ventilation, it is really noticeable. Exaggerated visibility, like switching from the TV to the cinema.”

The Pista GP helmet also features a much thicker visor than any previous AGV helmet models have in the past. The visor is 3.3 millimeters thick and gives an extra 9% of peripheral vision. Shark helmets were arguably the pioneer of using thicker polycarbonate visors to give greater safety and durability, so it is encouraging to see AGV investing in this area also.

The visor also has a new locking and release mechanism. The visor is locked by using a really simple single button that is positioned at the front and bottom of the visor and it can easily be operated with either hand (even in thick gloves) with no messing about with sliders or switches. It utilises a two-position locking mechanism that allows the visor to be opened a crack, or fully opened with another simple press of the button. Closing it is equally as easy, just snap it shut and it locks firmly into place. When closed we noticed that the visor feels very secure with no obvious gaps around the edges of the visor and the aperture. Removing the visor is also simple and it can be removed in a second by using a slider on either side of the visor and then easily slipping it out of position.

Interior/EPS:
Again, it seems like AGV have gone for a complete overhaul with their approach to the interior and padding of the Pista GP. The EPS has been created with variable density – this basically means that it isn’t a uniform thickness all over and it has been created to be thicker where you most need it, and slightly thinner in places where you want to avoid unnecessary or needless pressure (for example, around the ears it is less dense in order to optimise for comfort, but the cheek area and the top of the EPS is more dense to give more protection). In our opinion it works, and even on long rides it felt comfortable at all times and didn’t distract us.

The EPS also have large and strategically placed cutaway sections that are design to improve airflow around the helmet.

The helmet also features a comfortable neoprene neckroll – we didn’t get to ride in very wet weather, but from what we experienced it seemed to seal any gaps and would effectively prevent the cold and wet from seeping in.

Ventilation:
Nothing is perfect right, and the ventilation is probably the only area of the Pista GP where we found room for complaint. In order to reduce weight, the vents on the Pista GP are operated by rubber bungs, so you don’t have the usual sliders or wheel mechanisms that you get on other helmets to control ventilation. This has been done to increase the surface area of the vents and to allow greater airflow, while also reducing the overall weight of the helmet by removing extra mechanisms and the required housing for them – in fact AGV claim the vents on the Pista GP improves air intake by 200% when compared with the GP-Tech. Don’t get me wrong, the ventilation is great, but deciding to open a vent while riding can only really be done safely by pulling over and taking the bung out. Will you lose the bungs? Yeah, if you are anything like us then you will almost certainly lose them and end up paying for replacements. It remains to be seen how practical this approach is for the everyday rider, but I guess you need to keep in mind that this is a helmet that has been designed for the track and not for your local shopping trips, so there is reason behind the decision, but it is annoying all the same and doesn’t feel especially ‘premium’.

Summary:
Despite the minor niggles this is an incredible helmet and an amazing piece of helmet engineering. The Pista GP is unapologetically a race helmet through and through and it really comes to life when it is used at speed. It is light, comfortable, stable, strong, has excellent vision, and feels like it is hardly there and doesn’t get in the way of your riding. Oh yeah, and it looks amazing with sharp aggressive lines that cut through the air. The price tag is hefty, but if you are taking this helmet on to the track then it is easy to see where your money is going, but for riders that are looking for something more flexible and forgiving for everyday commuting then you may want to consider saving some money and going for the AGV Corsa option instead.


Price & where to buy it:
The AGV Pista GP is the top helmet in the AGV range and it doesn’t come cheap. Pista GPs usually retail from aroound the £1000 / $1500 price point, but you can probably pick up the Valentino Rossi Qatar SoleLuna up for less than £800 / $1000 if you know where to look. Check the links below for some trusted sellers.


FCMoto-logo7 Get it from FC-Moto.com who should be your first stop as they are often best on price. Recommended.
sportsbikeshop-logo5 Get it from SportsbikeShop.co.uk, your best option in the UK, also ship globally.
motoin_de Get it from MotoIn.de, based in Germany but have UK and US sites and ship globally.
Amazon-new Get it from Amazon, who have stock from various sellers, includig AGV.
ebay-logo You can also get stock from a variety of sellers on