I'm seeing a pattern of "I can sprint, so everyone should sprint" and "I can't do it, so nobody can do it." There are other racers besides yourself. Just yesterday, I had a smaller teammate drafting me in a gusty crosswind, pushing 450W while I was cruising along at 350W. Different people are different.
I'm a sprinter. I've never broken 1300 watts. FFS what's this thread about :p
You're right. Here's a guy called Miguel Indurain. He's much different from myself.
"The cyclist set a world record of 53,040 m, with an estimated average power output of 509.5 W."
Almost 510 watts for about 32 mph.
Boardman was around 440 watts for 30 mph.
Neither of these world class gentlemen's wattage or speed numbers approached what racer ex is throwing around.
That's what I called into question and that was the point.
And let me just reiterate where this tangent came from.
I said there is a huge difference between riding at 35 and riding at 40 mph. Which there is. Anyone can go out and try to do it.
To which racer ex pulls out his ac numbers and attempts to correlate some ridiculously low wattages with those ridiculously high speeds.
Now somehow we have all these "experts" chiming in as if they can verify that some aerodynamic anomaly on a velodrome is in some way applicable to what we were talking about in the first place. That being that it takes some pretty insane power to hold 35 mph, much less 40 mph (we're specifically talking about leadouts. On a road. On a road bike.), and even more ridiculous asserting that it can be done at a piddly wattage that even cat 5s can hold for a minute or two (at nowhere NEAR 35 or 40 mph).
Hope that clears up what seems to be some confusion.
Thanks for the correction. 33 is closer to 35 than 32. But it's not 35. And it's certainly not anywhere close to 40.
Yes, Boardman was on a road bike (though it was on a velodrome) Sorta the point, see? It fits well into this thread about leadouts and such (minus the velodrome bit).
Why has this turned into something about racer ex? He has nothing to do with anything that isn't related to what he can do.
You obviously agree that 40 is fast. Do you not also agree that it takes a much more significant amount of power to hold 40 for any length of time? How about 35?
Do you think anyone else on this forum could go out on a road bike on a road and ride at 35 mph at 440 watts? Do you even think racer ex could? With no tail winds?
Because Chris Friggin' Boardman couldn't on a velodrome. And it's a disservice to him to even suggest a comparison.
This is the only time I've been upset with a teammate. Cat 3 - 2.5 laps to go in a 55 minute race. It's been a tough race but I've been hiding and waiting for the sprint since it has been obvious for about 40 minutes that a break isn't go to stay away. I know exactly when & where I am going to make my jump. I don't have the raw power of most but I can hold what I have longer so I'm going to jump early and not be too disappointed if I get caught just before the line. As we turn into a strong headwind the field balloons across the road and I ease toward the front about 2-3 riders back.
A few riders attack and I just watch them go. They're nobody the field needs to be concerned about. They probably won't even last a lap.
Just then I hear my name yelled behind me. "... Go! ... Go!". I look back and there is a teammate I didn't even know was in the race. Anyway, he's got one of the strongest diesel engines I've ever ridden with. He's solo'd, or made the break, to podiums in big races more than a few times.
In that split second I decide "what the hell", this guy can hold it for 2 laps. I figure he wants me to bridge and then he'll counter on his own. Fine. I'd be happy helping him and getting the team a win. So I jump and hammer for about 3/4 a lap until we catch the break (which was falling apart anyway). I'm a little spent from the effort but happy and I wait for the teammate to make his attack.
But instead of going, he gets on the front and tells me "sit on my wheel and recover...". Wait...What!? He gets on the front and sets a pace that's a bit slow for what is now about 1.5 laps to go. We start to get swarmed. I go around him and get back in around 15th wheel. Unfortunately for me a few of the other teams were much more organized and absolutely drilled it.
Now, If I hadn't just drilled it myself for 3/4 of lap on the front I would have been ok. But I had, and I wasn't. As I felt the race start to slip away from me the stupidity of our move hit me and I mentally just gave up and cruised in for a pack finish.
I don't think my teammate even finished the race. He went straight to his car and went home. I was racing back to back so I didn't have the time to find him and ask him "WTF?". I haven't seen him since.
Moral of the story? I don't know. I'ts my fault for listening to him and I assumed I knew what his plans were.
So I don't understand your fascination that it is too hard to ride near 40, of course it is, that why it is hard and only done for a limited amount of time, 10 to 15 seconds for most. In this case no one is doing this speed for over 15 seconds unless they have a beast on their team. The longest I have seen is 30 to 40 seconds, basically a team pursuiter type guy and a guy who was no cat 3. I am not talking outliers, I am talking about how to do it right and give your team the win in a leadout, and yes even at a lower category race. I would say especially in a lower category race because those races tend to end in a sprint and tend to not be very hard before hand and if there was a sprinter in the race, he is just sitting there. You need to tire him out or keep him out of position with your leadout ... it needs to be fast to work at any cat.
Racer Ex (much smaller than indurain) tossed his numbers in to show how low of a wattage could be used to do a lead out in perfectly ideal conditions, an outlier, but still likely a fact, but doesn't matter. In reality a good lead requires 4 guys giving everything they got for as long as they can ... likely 600 watts min, but I would prefer something in the 800 range with the last leadout before the sprinter hitting over 1000 watts. That is a tough ask in a cat 3 race, so like most have been saying it is not going to happen, therefor leadouts don't work at the cat 3 level and therefore it is going to be a free for all and that is why your sprinter didn't win even with the 4 guy leadout.
That said I have both given and received leadouts at the cat 4, 3, 2 and 1 levels on many occasions where the final speed hit 40, most were wins for my team. So it can be done and if it is not done right, then don't wonder why your team got passed.
Speaking of rounded back, what's better for aero: round back or flat? Maybe it depends on the rider... Idk. Just wondering because I don't have a wind tunnel at my disposal lol!
Looking at Racer Ex's pic again, I would not say he is very round, not very flat either, just in the middle with his back. But I would assume he is as flat as he can comfortably be and his position looks pretty fast. The head drop is something I have found gives me two things in a TT. A slight power boost for some reason, as well as a more aero position by lining up the head with the back. I try to do it often.
That said, 450 may be a bit too low on a road bike
wiggo is the only person i can think of having a flat back. Martin seems to have tounded backs
No one believes leadout laps at 35mph, barring some special circumstance or course. I've seeeeeen a guy sprint to 40mph, but it was around a van so really he went from about 39mph to 41mph for all of 10s. I know it's possible but exceedingly rare, even in a race.
And I know firsthand that if you can go out on a flat road/calm winds and sprint to 32-33mph, you have enough jump to contend in all the cat 3 races I've ever been a part of.
Anyway, you replied too many times and even though I agree with you, you start to look crazy!
replying to this thread:
Some pics for comparison (photos courtesy of Alex Chiu).
Pretty flat, but some rounding, yet oh so fast (Zirbel):
Flat and fast:
Rounded, but still darn fast:
edit: lots more for comparison here: