The 2021/2022 Head Formula 105 W was tested in the women’s All-Mountain Traditional medium category by the experts at America's Best Bootfitters, powered by Masterfit.
Testers said the new Formula 105 W is one of those rare combinations of hot-spot free anatomical fit with best-of-test level performance that should appeal to a broad spectrum of skiers. Grab-and-go all-mountain skiing without any trouble was the takeaway from our team who said this would be a winner for Head.
It’s a roomy medium fit up front—the toebox fits long, wide and high, and the forefoot has plenty of room for the ball of foot to spread out and find a comfy planted place. Like it’s narrower sis RS, the medium Formula W also tapers quickly behind the forefoot to a firm but well-shaped fit around the ankles and heel pocket, though slightly relaxed from the vice-like heel of the narrow RS. Testers notice that the rest of the Formula’s fit is properly differentiated from the narrow as well, with a taller feeling instep and a more open feeling cuff for thicker legs.
Testers compared the level of performance to the women’s medium Tecnica Mach1, and it’s been a test favorite for 4 years running, so that’s pretty good company. The balance of power and quickness was evenly matched, testers said, and zero complaints were lodged for stance issues—neutral fore-aft, neutral laterally, with an even and progressive flex feel that skied stronger than the 105 labeling. This is a new polyurethane plastic being used in the Formula line-up and thus far, it seems like a win over the overly damp feel of the Raptor of old. A couple testers mentioned a feeling of disconnection between cuff and shell that they didn’t experience with the narrow Formula RS but were unable to put their finger on it and thought that perhaps molding the liner and shell would merge the two for them.
Liquid Fit liner injection remains a favorite of our testers but none wanted it done immediately here—they thought the out of box heel and ankle hold was superior and would prefer to ski the liner enough to get it to better match the interior shape of the shell before adding any material. The new cuff adjustment mechanism offers 2-degrees of total movement and better glide between cuff and shell via different cuff attachment inserts. While the calf fit is noticeably roomier than the Formula RS, there is also a dual-cam cuff adjustment to open the cuff circumference by 10mm, and the Form Fit shell is cookable for those with higher volume legs. Testers liked the power strap's adjustable Power Plate that helped spread shin pressure where they wanted it.