Armada offers two distinct skis in this class, the Invictus 99Ti and the Tracer 98. The Tracer 98 is lighter weight and more finesse-oriented than the 99Ti, but it is yoga-instructor strong, not 98lb-weakling soft. It doesn't ski light and it doesn’t chatter until it gets into the worst of conditions. But honestly, I wouldn't expect it to excel in those conditions anyway -- and if it did, it wouldn’t be so good at the things I want a 98mm ski to be able to do.
The all-new Head Kore 99 fills a narrow segment between two of the better skis in their segments, the Kore 93 and the Kore 105. With only a 12mm difference between those two, did Head even need a 99? Need? Well, that is a subjective word. Like I said, this is a highly competitive category, and Head didn’t want to lose the spot vacated by the Monster 98. By offering the Kore in a 99mm waist, Head is ensuring that it stays relevant. The brand has been hitting on all cylinders of late; why not take that Midas touch and offer a 99 in the Kore construction, since the Monster 98 was a monster of a ski for most mortal skiers.
- Why choose the Tracer 98? You are more of a finesse type looking for playfulness and possibly uphill capacity.
- Why choose the Kore 99? Light yet a charger, this ski can be worked but still holds well.