Tinkoff-Saxo's Tour de France water bottle vest

Sportful make the Tinkoff-Saxo's domestique's job easier with its vest capable of carrying multiple water bottles to team-mates

Matteo Tossato carries bottles on stage eight of the 2014 Tour de France
(Image credit: Graham Watson)

One of the most talked-about new pieces of equipment at the 2014 Tour de France hasn't been a super-light carbon-fibre frameset or an 11-speed electronic groupset, but a humble vest.

Anything that makes a rider's life easier is bound to go down well, and Sportful's 'bottle vest' is a simple yet effective solution to an age-old problem.

It consists of a mesh vest with pockets on the back designed to carry full water bottles, rather than a loyal domestique stuffing bottles in their back pockets and up their jersey.

Used exclusively by Tinkoff-Saxo during the Tour, the vest can be loaded with bottles by a helper in the team car and then slipped over the shoulders of the willing domestique. Once the water carrier has ridden up to the peloton, team-mates can grab their bottles themselves.

“It’s a really nice idea – and no one has thought about it before," said Tinkoff-Saxo's Daniele Bennati. "The bottle vest is much faster. When I go to the team car, the sport director or mechanic has prepared it for me, I put it on and off I go. When I reach my teammates, they can just take the bottles straight of my back."

Matteo Tossato carries water-bottles on stage eight of the 2014 Tour de France

Matteo Tossato carries water-bottles on stage eight of the 2014 Tour de France
(Image credit: Graham Watson)

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Nigel Wynn worked as associate editor on CyclingWeekly.com, he worked almost single-handedly on the Cycling Weekly website in its early days. His passion for cycling, his writing and his creativity, as well as his hard work and dedication, were the original driving force behind the website’s success. Without him, CyclingWeekly.com would certainly not exist on the size and scale that it enjoys today. Nigel sadly passed away, following a brave battle with a cancer-related illness, in 2018. He was a highly valued colleague, and more importantly, n exceptional person to work with - his presence is sorely missed.