Mountain Bike Racing - Racing with bottle or camelback
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08-12-05, 11:18 PM
I race motorcycle crosscountry and use the camelback. Thinking of hanging it up and giving the mtb racing a try.I use mtb to train and have decided they are more fun . so in my first race on the 28th of aug. do i show up with the camelbak or the water bottle. i have noticed all the pros use the bottle, is there some reason. I was wondering if there was a weight issue with the bottle.
I will need all the help i can get.
08-14-05, 02:34 PM
The pro's use a bottle, becuause they're weight weenies. Either / Or is fine, it really depends on your preference and your race length. After 10k I feel that the camelbak is better, It's easier to take quick sips along the way and I dont forget to drink. Some people set their watch to chirp on 5 minute intervals to acheive this, I havent tried that yet.
08-15-05, 08:12 PM
Beyond the weight weenie issue, i find that carrying a backpack gives me lower back pain on a race, its ok on a fun ride, but for racing i prefer a bottle. Also when your fatigued, a backpack just makes it that liuttle bit more difficult to maneuver IMHO. for longer races i have somone pass me a bottle between laps if i can arrange it.
08-15-05, 08:49 PM
I always use a Camelback. It's hard to cram 2 liters of water into a bottle.
Plus, the Camelback will hold spare tubes, a pump, and a multitool. You will need these in racing.
I'm probably posting this too late to be of any great help, but here goes. I like the Camelbak Flashflow. I feel like it's a great compromise between bottles and the pack. It holds two water bottles-worth and centers the load down around your hips. It never made much sense to me to have a shoulder-strap pack that put water weight up high - - or having bottles on your frame messing up the bike's weight distribution.
08-26-05, 06:35 PM
Some longer races are supported by stations that hand out bottles filled with the race sponsor's drink.
09-04-05, 10:13 AM
I've lost sooo many bottles mountain bike racing that I finally bought a camelback. The only thing I don't like is how the straps feel on my shoulders.
do you guys use the backpack camelbaks or just the bladder and the pack.
becasue i just take the bladder and 2 cliff bars on my rides(i dont race) and it doesnt move, weigh that much, and the straps are thin.
the backpack looking ones are too big in my opinion.
here's the breakdown of my (limited) experience:
faster to refil between laps (just swap them out)
can carry different things in different bottles
harder to drink from on the run (this is mitigated with practice + timing on most courses. unless you have a really crazy, no-time-to-think course)
no place to put extra gear (of course, you can use a seat pack or pockets or the like)
harder to hold on to. it sucks to drop a bottle while speeding down a trail.
capacity. both in fluid and gear.
easier to drink on the run. the tube is lighter than a whole bottle, and since it's strapped to you back, it's very difficult to drop.
crash padding :)
if you get the pack fitted right, it *may* provide better weight distribution. YMMV: some people prefer the weight on them, some people prefer it on the bike. both have an effect on ride feel and maneuverability and the like, experimentation may help you figure out which you prefer.
weight (sometimes being able to carry your entire repair kit is a BAD thing) :)
takes longer to refil, if you even can, and can take longer to get to things in the pack than in your pockets. for example, if your stem comes loose and you have to pull out your multi-tool to tighten it... (yeah, this happened to me once. it sucked.)
it takes experimentation to find the best way to wear the pack, which can affect where the work of carrying it goes. mine used to make my lower back work harder, but i think i've gotten it adjusted to the point where it's fairly neutral.
i think that, overall, a good hydropack can be useful, but not essential. it's really a preference thing. for rides under an hour [and races under ten miles], i leave the pack at home, but for longer rides i find it useful. but that's me. i get passed by plenty of people going just bottles :) [and occassionally pass guys who DNF when they blow tires]
10-06-05, 12:12 PM
I use both.
I put water in my Camelbak (and spare tubes, etc.), and I put a sports bevvie in my water bottle. I guess it depends on how long the race is, and how hot it is out, but that way, my Camelbak stays relatively clean, and I can sip some Gatorade (or that Clif Bar drink, that's pretty good) during a race.
Personally, I don't like reaching for / fumbling with a water bottle while I'm racing. Sipping the Camelbak straw is a lot easier, and since I'm already used to it (since that's what I ride / train with) it's a no-brainer.
10-12-05, 12:03 AM
I just did a 24 hr race using a camelback and it worked fine. However, the overall winner used a bottle which I assume he must have swapped out every hour or so. It all comes down to personal preference. Best of luck.
10-13-05, 06:15 PM
for competition endurance racing or on a closed circuit, i'ld say camelback. For street use, i'ld say waterbottle.
10-17-05, 08:37 AM
I just did a 24hr race, this time used only bottles and worked out real well. The course passed in front of the pit stall so every two laps I'll get a new bottle and go on.
10-17-05, 01:18 PM
I'll add that with a pack that fits close to the body, it can be HOT in the summer- I like my body to breathe. However, I went from a Performance Lobo-style pack to a Hydrapak (dont know the model offhand) that has four contact points with the back but allows airflow between you and the pack. I never feel overheated with it. Of course, in the winter, a snug pack w/ hot coffee under a parka can feel good!
11-01-05, 04:28 PM
i've never ejected a camelback. i have ejected bottles. when you're 20 miles out and there are no support people, losing your only water blows donkey nuggets. also, in the event of a crash, the camelback and bladder act like a spine protector.
i have also crashed as a result of an ejected bottle comming back up into my front wheel. double damn.
hope this helps.
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