Imagine its summer. Imagine its hot. Youve been out for a four hour ride in the heat. What does the water in your water bottle taste like? Warm plastic probably. But not with this innovation from the US...

The water cooler with no socks appeal

I started my career in bike journalism fourteen years ago as a freelance MTB expedition writer. I specialised in month-long trips to deserts (Kalahari, Sahara, Negev, Sinai etc).

My articles about hot-weather riding always contained the same top-tip: wrap your water bottles in white sports socks and keep the socks wet. The evaporation of the water in the mucky old sock would keep the contents of the bottle cool. The faster you rode, the quicker the water in the bottle would cool.

This was a trick shown to me by an Israeli friend (the first Stumpjumper owner in the Middle East!). He in turn had nicked the idea from bedouin, although, in this country, wrapping milk bottles in wet muslin was one of the ways people used to keep milk fresh before fridges.

Anyway, before I digress any further, my friends wet sock trick has been updated by some clever Yanks and, newly available in the UK, is a swanky looking commercial version. Its called the MaxChill and comprises a neoprene-type skin sandwiching a polymer foam that retains up to 30 times its own weight in water.

It comes with its own 24oz water bottle and fits standard cages. According to the manufacturers, the MaxChill cover generates seven times the cooling power of ice. And unlike ice which melts during the first half hour of a hot ride the MaxChill can be recharged as you go along. Just dunk it in water.

The MaxChill could be a hot little product for ordering in time for next years heatwave (theres going to be one, yes?).

MaxChill is imported by First Choice Expedition Foods of Pickering. The bottle plus sleeve retails at £7.99 with the sleeve on its own retailing at £5.99.

Tel: 01751 473330

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