Olin Radius K


1998 Executive-Gold Medal Winner

Size: 170-200 cm
Price: $575
Details: Last year's Olin Radius was popular for its effortless turning ability, but it lacked...oomph. Add a little 21st-century Special K-Kevlar-and you suddenly have one of the most energetic, exciting skis in the category. At home both on ice and in the soft stuff, "this ski conducts heat," said Bigford. "It will make you a better skier." The K is both wide (a 65-mm waist) and snappy, so it goes everywhere "with power and consistency," said McMenamy. Shelton spoke for all the testers when he recommended the K "for anyone who has achieved a level of expertise on traditional skis but doesn't want the whippy, short-arc feel of the more radical shapes."

Positives: Snappy turner with boundless energy
Negatives: Higher speeds can mean high anxiety