The nasty rain falling on the peloton at the Tour this year has revealed a surprising fact. The greatest single piece of tech at the 2014 Tour de France isn’t space age new wheels or fancy electronic shifting, it’s not an aero bike or a feather weight climber. It’s fabric, zippers and leather stitched together to make the Rapha Wet Bag.

Ben Edwards/Photos courtesy Rapha

While Team SKY may be having a nightmarish Tour this year the versatile wet bag they helped Rapha design has led us to crown it the greatest single piece of equipment at the 2014 Tour de France. It has been in the back of the Team SKY cars for two years, but only earlier this summer did the crew at peloton get our hands on one to fully appreciate.

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The secret to its success is doing away with any semblance of ‘normal’ bag layout. It’s a rectangle with six different compartments, one on each side, with five clearly labeled for easy organization and access – Jersey 1, Jersey 2, Legs and Arms, Waterproof, and Shoes. Another mesh compartment can dry wet clothes or hold nutrition, your Garmin, or even a small helmet.

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It reminds us of how Cannondale Pro Cycling Rider, George Bennett, says he prepares for a day on the road. He imagines Ironman’s suit flying towards him – Shoes, Legs, Arms, Torso, Head – it’s an idiot proof way to ensure you have everything you need for a day on the road and it synchs perfectly with the layout of the Rapha Wet Bag. Made of indestructible Cordura Nylon, beefy zippers and with a Sky blue leather stripe it’s a real conversation starter to.

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With everything in its place for the mechanics the bag makes trips back to the car for a vest or booties faster and smoother for Team SKY riders, meaning they get back into the shelter of the wheels faster. For you and me it’s just the perfect way to ensure we never show up at a race or Fondo without our shoes or glasses or rain cape. The added bonus is it costs $165. When was the last time the coolest piece of equipment at the Tour cost $165?

Price: $165 Size: 36cm(L) x 24cm(H) x 24cm(W) More: rapha.cc

Rapha and Team Sky – The Little Things: Wet Bag from RAPHA on Vimeo.