TypeA Girl Pilot
B.T.com Gear Reviewer
IntroductionRocket Science Sports is a young triathlon equipment company based out of Austin, Texas, which produces triathlon backpacks, duffel bags, wetsuits and assorted accessories. In the spring of 2007, they are expected to come out with a race suit line as well. While they tout their scientific craftiness in employing Buoyancy Laminated Technology for their wetsuits and dimpled water bottles for greater aerodynamics, how tricked out can someone make a duffel bag that stands out from the rest?Rocket Science Sports has created an entry-level duffel bag which rivals those more expensive backpacks being marketed. It leaves the triathlete with extra money left over to spend on other necessary equipment – equipment that they’ll find all neatly packed into this generously sized and well-thought out bag...it is literally a “carrying system”.First ImpressionsAs I unfolded the bag from the box it came in, I was immediately pleased with what the designer was thinking. Evidently s/he was thinking of me, and when people do that, it makes me feel warm inside. It was just what someone like me needed: I’m the type of someone that just throws everything together in a bag to get my belongings from Point A to Point B. For example, my purse is a free-for-all mishmash of all things essential that every woman should always carry. If I go digging for a pen, I may fish out lip liner, an assortment of change, gum, or a receipt or two before acquiring a writing implement.
Real Joe and Jane Bag
Rocket Science Sportswww.rocketsciencesports.com
It’s not skinny! It expands to a huge ball of triathlon stuff, neatly packed away in separate compartments, with room to spare for more items you might want to bring along to the race site.
Joking aside, the bag was equipped with lots of separate pockets inside and pouches outside. I immediately knew that I would be able to put everything I needed into it for racing. Besides an external mesh compartment for my helmet and some serious cubic volume in the main compartment of the duffel bag for my racing gear, there was logically a place for everything, placed where they would be accessible for things such as my keys, sunglasses, and mobile phone. It also had a separate zip-off wet/dry storage compartment attached to the bottom of the bag, which, when unzipped from the main duffel bag, has straps which convert it into another separate backpack itself. Yes, this bag is a carrying system.
The Field TestEverything that I would have at my transition area (including a foot rinse basin) and what I’d need after the race like dry clothing actually fit into the bag. With all the pockets, pouches, and external mesh storage areas, I should more accurately say that everything I needed during race day (minus the post-race cooler) could be easily transported in and outside around the bag.
Inside the main compartment, I was able to comfortably store my wetsuit, goggles, extra swim cap, running shoes, biking shoes, chip strap, race belt, plastic foot rinse basin, visor, extra tri suit, Body Glide, Butt Butt’r, water bottle belt, energy bar, gels, regular bath towel, and smaller transition towel. Sunglasses were put in the sunglass pouch, my keys attached to the key clip, and some money in the extra zip pockets.
On The GoWith so much packed into the duffel bag, it felt unwieldy on my back when I was walking around; however, it did hold everything I can imagine needing on race day. Rocket Science Sports markets the bag as being ergonomically designed that it would be comfortable on the bike, but I found it more do-able than comfortable. The duffel bag’s shoulder straps have a suspension system including a sternum and waist straps to stabilize the bag on your body.Final ThoughtsOverall, this product delivers. You can arrange your equipment and belongings in the compartments, which I found was very helpful when it came to locating my Body Glide, gels, cash, etc in an instant. I never had to worry about my keys falling to the bottom of the bag and digging for them, my phone was always handy. Most importantly, there was ample room for my triathlon necessities with room to spare if I wanted to bring bike maintenance items with me to the transition area. If I had to go about digging for my Chamois Butt Butt’r, I’d find my Butt Butt’r instead of pulling out the Pedro’s All-Purpose Grease.There is enough stress on race day making sure you have everything you need from your checklist, and having logical places within a bag to store and retrieve items helps tremendously.If you don’t prefer to wear it on your back, there is a top loop that you can use to carry the bag as well. Rocket Science Sports offers a backpack as well for $109.99. With the duffel bag’s price being $59.99, it is a great value which does the same thing at the end. It’s the real Joe, it’s the real Jane, it’s the real deal.
Real Joe and Jane BagBy Rocket Science Sportswww.rocketsciencesports.com
Fit and Comfort
The straps are comfortable and padded, but when the bag is fully packed, it is bulky and feels a little awkward on the back on the bike.
Holds plenty of equipment, many separate storage areas inside and outside, an easy-access mobile phone pocket, glasses compartment, and a key ring clip. The detachable wet storage compartment/backpack is a plus.
Quality of Construction
It is constructed of durable materials and the seams are strong. Rocket Science Sports also backs its products with a one year no-hassle guarantee.
It is a little bulky, but that is expected for all the equipment it holds in its spacious main compartment. Overall, it is a good-looking bag and the detachable wet/dry backpack compartment is no-frills, suitable for male or female use.A variety of colors to choose from: red, black, ice blue, and powder pink.
For the price, it is a good product and does what it is designed to do—it offers you a way to organize your equipment and assorted other items.
*based on the fashion magazine, not the sitcom character
A Note on the Author: TypeA Girl Pilot has been a member of Beginner Triathlete since 2004, the same year she began competing in triathlons. She loves participating in open water swim races, all road races from 10Ks to marathons, and century rides to supplement her overall triathlon training. This one-time Ironman finisher’s favorite race is the Mooseman Half Ironman. She will be competing in Ironman Lake Placid 2007. You are welcome to contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or via PM on this website with any questions or comments.