Recently I decided to change things up a bit with my hydration system on the bike. I’ve had a number of different solutions on my bike, from the Specialized aero water bottle specifically made for the bike, regular old metal cages, to the Speedfil tank with the tube. Each had their pluses and minuses. I liked the Speedfil the most of those three, but the problem is that it is very large, not very aero dynamic and a pain in the ass to clean.
For spare bottles I have the XLab Wing with carbon cages. Perfect for carrying two extra water bottles and stays out of the way. It is very convenient to grab one of those bottles and fill the Speedfil, or switch it out bottles on the down tube. I’ll be sticking with the XLab Wing on the seat.
Up front though, wasn’t really sure what a good solution would be. I liked having the tube from the Speedfil in front of me, it reminded me to drink. I also didn’t have to take my hands of the handlebars or come out of the aero position. I saw a lot of the Pro triathletes simply put a water bottle between their aero bars using zip ties. I tried that, but never felt comfortable with the way the zip ties were holding the cage in place. That led me to the X-Lab Torpedo Mount.
This mount worked great. It comes with four Velcro straps that wrap around the aero bars to hold the mount in place. I was going to use a regular old cage, but X-Lab also sells the Torpedo Cage made of carbon as well. This cage isn’t quite as long as a normal cage, which is kind of nice for inserting and removing your water bottle.
I tried the entire system out last weekend on my first outdoor ride. So far so good, it was easy to get a quick drink from the water bottle. So much easier than grabbing one off of the down-tube cages. Also having it right in front of me was a constant reminder to drink. Switching bottles with one of the ones on the wing was also pretty easy too.
The only downside to the setup is the expense. The price for both of these items is $84.90 on Amazon. That is a bit much for a water bottle holder, which is why you see a lot of people using the zip ties and an old cage.