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If you see a TT/aero bike, what are the odds that it's a triathlete?

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

If you see a TT/aero bike, what are the odds that it's a triathlete?

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Old 05-08-09, 12:40 PM
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agarose2000
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If you see a TT/aero bike, what are the odds that it's a triathlete?

If you see a TT/aero bike ridden on the road in training, what are the odds that the person riding it is a triathlete versus a pure roadie training for TT races? Just curious.
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Old 05-08-09, 12:44 PM
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Some people just like to have and extra place to put their arms while riding. Just saying they dont have to be training for either.
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Old 05-08-09, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Pi**{ie View Post
Some people just like to have and extra place to put their arms while riding. Just saying they dont have to be training for either.
I don't think most people ride TT bikes for enjoyment as they are not setup for comfort.

There appear to be many more Triathlons of varying lengths than TT for road cyclists, so I would say odds are very good a TT bike is being ridden by a triathlete.
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Old 05-08-09, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
I don't think most people ride TT bikes for enjoyment as they are not setup for comfort.

There appear to be many more Triathlons of varying lengths than TT for road cyclists, so I would say odds are very good a TT bike is being ridden by a triathlete.
Sorry I miss read this as an aerobar set up. My mind is gone its friday please forgive.
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Old 05-08-09, 12:54 PM
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95% of the time it is a triathlete on a full TT bike in my area.

my biggest cycling pet peeve is when people have road bikes with clip on aerobars and ride them on the road.
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Old 05-08-09, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Jynx View Post
my biggest cycling pet peeve is when people have road bikes with clip on aerobars and ride them on the road.
Meh, I let that stuff go. My pet peeve is the weekend Lances doing 25mph on the MUP's - weaving in and out of kids 'n whatnot.

To the OP, 5.362 to 1.
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Old 05-08-09, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Jynx View Post
95% of the time it is a triathlete on a full TT bike in my area.

my biggest cycling pet peeve is when people have road bikes with clip on aerobars and ride them on the road.
Errr, what's wrong with that if they're not in a paceline?
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Old 05-08-09, 01:05 PM
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most of them 'round these parts ride pacelines...epic fail
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Old 05-08-09, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
I don't think most people ride TT bikes for enjoyment as they are not setup for comfort.
I would disagree. If I have been riding my TT bike with some regularity -- so I am "used to" the position, and particularly the neck bend -- I find it very comfortable.

The bike is obviously not designed for climbing or cornering, but if I'm going on a long, flat ride, the TT bike can even be more comfortable than a road bike. As I understand it, this should be so, where a TT position shifts the support of your upper-body weight from muscles to bones.

To the OP's question, I'd say it is a high probability that it is a triathlete. The guys I ride with who are "bike racers" mostly don't have TT bikes (although they may have multiple other bikes), and even the guys who have them don't ride them much except in or before races. On the other hand, the triathletes I ride with almost all have only one bike and it is a TT bike.
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Old 05-08-09, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by agarose2000 View Post
Errr, what's wrong with that if they're not in a paceline?
You have less control when in the aerobars and are away from the brake levers. Anytime I am riding I try to get away from these people. They are usually all over the road and have no clue what they are doing. Dead give away by how horrible the aerobars are set up on their bike.

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=260029

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=294554
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Old 05-08-09, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by agarose2000 View Post
If you see a TT/aero bike ridden on the road in training, what are the odds that the person riding it is a triathlete versus a pure roadie training for TT races? Just curious.
depends.

almost never see it where i am now, but saw it regularly when i was in memphis last year.

seeing as bluff city is filthy with trYathletes, i'd say that the odds were 50/50 that they were tryguys/grrllls. depended on the ride.
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Old 05-08-09, 01:37 PM
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It' usually pretty obvious. If the bike is equipped with a bento box, bottle launchers and CO2 cartridges hanging off the back of the saddle, heavily equipped with Zipp products and filthy, it's a triathlete.
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Old 05-08-09, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by andr0id View Post
It' usually pretty obvious. If the bike is equipped with a bento box, bottle launchers and CO2 cartridges hanging off the back of the saddle, heavily equipped with Zipp products and filthy, it's a triathlete.
I was gonna say: TT bike w/ bottle launchers = 100% chance that it is a Tri person. Also a dirty bike is just the icing on the cake.
Also trying to push big gears at a 50 cadence sort of tips you off too.
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Old 05-08-09, 01:48 PM
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I don't have clip-on aero bars but I'm wondering what's so bad about having them on a road bike. Especially in Oklahoma, there are long flat stretches with god-awful amounts of headwind. It seems like it would be advantageous to be able to tuck in during these stretches where I'm not going to touch my shifters or brakes. I recall reading either on these forums or in RBA that pros would be faster on standard stages using aerodynamic TT style bikes (with slight geometric tweaking) if the UCI allowed it.
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Old 05-08-09, 01:49 PM
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I try to sit up as high as I can in the saddle when I pass those guys.
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Old 05-08-09, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by andr0id View Post
It' usually pretty obvious. If the bike is equipped with a bento box, bottle launchers and CO2 cartridges hanging off the back of the saddle, heavily equipped with Zipp products and filthy, it's a triathlete.


My hypothesis is that the more they veer from a straight line while just riding down the road, the higher probability they're trimathletes. If they sit up, slow, and then wobble through a corner, 100% probability. In all fairness, the ones who take the tri/TTbikes up into the mtns, and do some of the climbing routes around here, are pretty good bike handlers. Probably roadies...
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Old 05-08-09, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by DScott View Post


My hypothesis is that the more they veer from a straight line while just riding down the road, the higher probability they're trimathletes. If they sit up, slow, and then wobble through a corner, 100% probability. In all fairness, the ones who take the tri/TTbikes up into the mtns, and do some of the climbing routes around here, are pretty good bike handlers. Probably roadies...
Ahhh, the prejudice. You should realize that the LA Triclub has 3 (!) groups of 10-30 every weekend, including an advanced fast group that does 70-120 miles of riding in the mountains, including the steepest climbs (including the Deer Creek 20% 2 mile climb section). Just because they're good riders (and most of them are) doesn't automatically mean they're roadies. A lot of the faster ones are as strong as Cat1/2 cyclists. (One guy runs a 2:20 marathon - olympic qualifying standard, is also monster fast on the bike, and he's not even the fastest one) I'm not as strong as the strongest, but I can definitely hang with the top half of the competitive pure roadie group (to their chagrin.)

I've ridden with both the local competitive roadie club and the intermediate and faster triclub groups here. Bike handling skills are totally fine in both groups, even with the prevalence of aerobars in the trigroup.

In summary - roadies shouldn't make judgments on trifolks until they ride with them.
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Old 05-08-09, 05:02 PM
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Old 05-08-09, 05:33 PM
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Old 05-08-09, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by n00bL35 View Post
I don't have clip-on aero bars but I'm wondering what's so bad about having them on a road bike. Especially in Oklahoma, there are long flat stretches with god-awful amounts of headwind. It seems like it would be advantageous to be able to tuck in during these stretches where I'm not going to touch my shifters or brakes. I recall reading either on these forums or in RBA that pros would be faster on standard stages using aerodynamic TT style bikes (with slight geometric tweaking) if the UCI allowed it.
They would be faster, but less safe. With everyone having them, there's no comparative advantage. So the overall time on the stage would be faster, but the results wouldn't be appreciably affected. So they do nothing to enhance the race beyone increasing average speeds a bit while at the same time making it riskier. That's not a good tradeoff unless crashes are what entertains you about bike racing.
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Old 05-08-09, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by andr0id View Post
It' usually pretty obvious. If the bike is equipped with a bento box, bottle launchers and CO2 cartridges hanging off the back of the saddle, heavily equipped with Zipp products and filthy, it's a triathlete.
Ever consider that the bento box has fuel for the marathon he'll be running while you're on the couch after your ride?

Just a thought.
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Old 05-08-09, 05:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Jynx View Post
95% of the time it is a triathlete on a full TT bike in my area.

my biggest cycling pet peeve is when people have road bikes with clip on aerobars and ride them on the road.
In my area it breaks down like this:

94% of the time it's a Fred who thinks aero bars make them go faster.

5% of the time it's a triathlete of some kind.

1% of the time it's me or one of the 9 other USAC guys in Orange County who actually train on a real TT bike.

And 7 of those guys are faster than me.
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Old 05-08-09, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by DScott View Post


My hypothesis is that the more they veer from a straight line while just riding down the road, the higher probability they're trimathletes. If they sit up, slow, and then wobble through a corner, 100% probability. In all fairness, the ones who take the tri/TTbikes up into the mtns, and do some of the climbing routes around here, are pretty good bike handlers. Probably roadies...
Come out here sometime. You'll have plenty of time looking at my back as I disappear into the distance to see I'm riding a nice smooth line.
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Old 05-08-09, 05:51 PM
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Originally Posted by agarose2000 View Post
In summary - roadies shouldn't make judgments on trifolks until they ride with them.
Roadies who have been riding forever tend not to like the fast tri-guys who have been riding for a couple years and are still faster than them....
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Old 05-08-09, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by agarose2000 View Post
If you see a TT/aero bike ridden on the road in training, what are the odds that the person riding it is a triathlete versus a pure roadie training for TT races? Just curious.
Around DC, the odds are extremely high that it's a triathlete because there are virtually no TT's nearby, and one of them is a hill climb. Also, most folks in the lower cats, i.e. 3/4/5 don't have task-specific TT bikes--at least not around here.
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