2012 Winner – Steve Serpell, Freedom Design or Ponte
Steve won the 2012 Bendigo Inventor Awards for his innovative development of the Freedom Design or Ponte. This invention is an alternative for current water bottles used on bicycles. The system is suitable for road bikes, mountain bikes, hybrids and pedelecs. Son-in-law Jason Sim said the idea for the Freedom Design came from a spur-of-the-moment bike ride. “Steve and I were out riding with our bikes and we struggled to get our water bottles back onto the conventional stand,” Mr Sim said. “Steve said to me ‘there has got to be a better way we can do this.’ That was five years ago and he has slowly pieced it together and has come up with this concept.”
Mr Sim said the invention was safer for riders. “The conventional system requires the bottle to slide into the cage and the bottle has to conform to the size of the cage,” he said. “This system being a pin means the bottle can be any shape to start off with. So if you wanted to create an aerodynamic shape or even have a kids’ bottle with a handle, you can have more versatility. The main fact is that it is a lot safer to use.”
Mr Sim said Steve had put a lot of hard work and effort into creating the Freedom Design. “I can see why so many inventions and ideas never make it to the shelf because you just have to keep backing yourself and believing yourself and do it. To get it from the idea to where we are now took a long time and a lot of fine tuning,” he said.
The invention is now produced worldwide.