The world of racing has, thankfully, evolved from the days of leather-capped maniacs to today’s safety-oriented mindset. Protecting drivers out on the track has become the paramount concern: Helmets, fire extinguishers, roll cages, and more are now required before you can even get a sniff of the track.
Helmets are undoubtably one of the most important pieces of driver safety. In fact, if you’re looking at getting one, that’s essentially your brain saying “Yeah, protect me.” And you should.
There’s a wide range of factors to take into consideration when buying a track day helmet: weight, material, size, ventilation, microphone compatibility, and more. While there are cheap versions, just understand you’re getting what you pay for. When it comes to protecting your head, it’s a good idea to invest in quality.
We looked at a wide range of racing helmets and compiled this list based on ratings from Amazon and Competition Motorsport, safety certifications, use among the pros, and overall bang for your buck. So, here are six great racing helmets for your next track day. Remember, your head hates Armco as much as your front bumper, so protect it!
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The Conquer carbon-fiber helmet is a fantastic entry-level choice that provides solid protection without all the fancy stuff. Its relatively light weight will mean your neck will thank you during heavy g-force action.
The DOT-approved Bell Eliminator helmet boasts a carbon shell, contoured cheek pads, and an anti-odor liner. As an added bonus, the design looks awesome.
Sparco and safety go hand in hand thanks to their outstanding racing seats, harnesses, helmets, and more. This Sparco helmet is Snell and FIA homologated, reinforced with a carbon-kevlar mixture, and even features drink-system and intercom compatibility.
The Simpson Speedway RX helmet displays a unique design on top. (And no, it’s not for your forehead wrinkles.) They’re called “Wave Eliminators” and provide an aerodynamic advantage. This helmet weighs just three pounds and is proudly made in America.
Look familiar? That’s right, the Simpson Diamondback-style helmet is the same brain bucket made famous by Top Gear’s The Stig. And he wore it for a good reason—this helmet is excellent. The Diamondback is made in America, featuring HANS device anchors and a recessed eye port that offers a 100 percent shield seal.
If you’re looking for a no-compromises, top-of-the-line helmet, the Stilo ST5 GT 8860 carbon version is hard to beat. The ST5 is Stilo’s flagship model, and this variant boasts fantastic visibility, numerous ventilation ports, and hook-ups for hydration and electronics. This ultra high-performance track day helmet means business.
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