Every once in a while I come across something and ask, “Why didn’t I think of that!?” Such is the case with the ZAC Speed RP-3 Exotec Protector pack system.Participating in the HYR 24 Hours of Glen Helen as part of Team Wildcat, I was graciously showered with numerous items to test from the Dirt Rider crew. One of the items in the goodie bag was a unique-looking chest protector/hydration system/storage pack thingy combination offered by the unknown-to-me ZAC Speed Company.Toying, much like the 2001: A Space Odyssey ape, I noted the high quality of the 1000-denier ballistic nylon, polycarbonate and biofoam construction as well as the numerous storage features and configurations. As race time approached I opted to use just the hydration system and pack without the chest protector. With the provided “backpack conversion” option the Exotec fit well under my old personal chest protector with the drink tube positioned in a well-thought-out location, providing three liters of easily accessible and much-needed refreshment during my first session in the seat.While awaiting my next turn on the bike I reassembled the ZAC to its primary configuration with the front chest protector. (I chose to take off the removable and adjustable bicep guards due to personal preference, but was pleased that this was a simple process.) The RP-3 fit surprisingly well due to the slip-lock adjustable straps and provided the desired roost shield without trying to MacGyver a drink system. Additionally, as we prepared to head out into the darkness another feature was noted. While watching my teammates struggle for a location and mounting options for their helmet light battery and cord (involving duct tape and safety wire), I smiled as I easily slid the light battery and extra wire right into one of the Exotec’s storage compartments.After eight-plus hours in the saddle I feel confident in stating that the ZAC Exotec RP-3 provides something truly innovative to the motorcycle racer/rider. And something I surely wish I had invented! Having raced MX, desert, cross-country as well as trail ridden for 25-plus years, I’ve forever sought the perfect combo of roost shield, drink system and storage with varying levels of success. The fitting challenges (and zip-ties) of three different products are gone with the ZAC Exotec. It does it all and fits great. It is now a permanent part of my gear bag and used every time I ride.The $195 dollar price tag may sound steep, but when you combine how much a separate chest protector, drink system and fanny pack cost, it is quite reasonable. Why didn’t I think of that!?