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27 MPH, what's this all about?

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

27 MPH, what's this all about?

Old 08-17-04, 07:27 AM
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zensuit
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27 MPH, what's this all about?

Okay, every time a roadie posts here about a group ride somebody is pulling the pack at 27 MPH. Not 25, 26, or 28...but always 27.

What's up with that? First of all, when I was racing Cat 5-4, the pack usually went somewhere between 23-25 MPH until the hammer went down, and some of the breaks, even at that level, went 30 flatland and 22-23 false uphill.

When I ride alone, I ride the flats somewhere between 21 and 25MPH, depending on my ride goals that day and my fitness. I can do 27, but it's never been an actual goal. As a matter of fact, I averaged 25 MPH for a 20 mile TT ten years ago in open 30+ division and finished 12th. 27 MPH would have given me top 5. With aero gear and all!

Now that I see how critical 27 MPH seems to be for real roadies, I'd like to know the following:

1.What training did you use to hit the magic "27" number?

2. Did you do this on a triple or a double?

3. When you slacked off a little and "only" rode 23MPH, did your bike respond poorly?

4. Are you Time Trialing at National record levels? Cause you should be!

Thanks in advance,

Z
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Old 08-17-04, 07:38 AM
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Nobody pulls at 27 on a flat for very long do they? When I took a training ride with the local race organization - Team Oregon - they did a series of side-by-side pacelines with 30 riders participating. 10 - 12 miles each around a loop and no person pulled for more than 10-15 seconds.

Average speed - 27 mph. Never in a million years could I have done it for so long on my own.

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Old 08-17-04, 07:43 AM
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Originally Posted by 55/Rad
Nobody pulls at 27 on a flat for very long do they? When I took a training ride with the local race organization - Team Oregon - they did a series of side-by-side pacelines with 30 riders participating. 10 - 12 miles each around a loop and no person pulled for more than 10-15 seconds.

Average speed - 27 mph. Never in a million years could I have done it for so long on my own.

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See what I mean? There is something about the 27MPH number? And, no, nobody but the elite can pull at 27 on their own for any real length of time...most guys I knew from Cat 3 (and those guys are FAST) could pull at about 24-25 all day if there were no real hills.

To give you some perspective on how fast the pros really are, Hincapie pulled the pack for 3 miles straight in the Tour at over 28 MPH, with his hands on the hoods! Try that for one mile...that's why I was spoofing on 27MPH (posters sometimes say they pulled somebody at 27MPH for 5 miles when they are complaining about wheel suckers), because it's just FAST.

Z
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Old 08-17-04, 07:44 AM
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28 is way too rough............26 is way too easy................27 is juuuuuuust rught.

I think there is a little embelishment going on at times. Sort of like "I was in Cambodia over Christmas".
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Old 08-17-04, 07:47 AM
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I can't avg 27 on flats yet but I can carry the ball over 290 into the wind.

No doubt there is a similar effect on here.
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Old 08-17-04, 07:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Grasschopper
I can't avg 27 on flats yet but I can carry the ball over 290 into the wind.
With a soft landing on a island green no doubt.

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Old 08-17-04, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Grasschopper
I can't avg 27 on flats yet but I can carry the ball over 290 into the wind.

No doubt there is a similar effect on here.
I can putt one 290 into the wind these days...ouch
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Old 08-17-04, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by 55/Rad
With a soft landing on a island green no doubt.

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Old 08-17-04, 08:17 AM
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24 becomes 27 real easy with a tailwind.
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Old 08-17-04, 08:32 AM
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Try that for one mile...that's why I was spoofing on 27MPH (posters sometimes say they pulled somebody at 27MPH for 5 miles when they are complaining about wheel suckers), because it's just FAST.
Hay I think that was me, here is how, tail wind, ever so slight downward grade, I was feeling unusually strong that day, and I was absolutly blowing up to keep that pace. Basically I had everything going my way, will that ever happen again? Probably not.
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Old 08-17-04, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by zensuit
went 30 flatland and 22-23 false uphill.
what does false uphill mean?
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Old 08-17-04, 08:45 AM
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where I live, our tailwinds turn 27 into 35 REAL fast. It's great. There's no wind resistance against you at all. It's completely silent at 35mph
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Old 08-17-04, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by washed up

"I was in Cambodia over Christmas".
Why would you go to Cambodia for Christmas, and what was the biking like there? Do they also pull 27 mph
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Old 08-17-04, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by timmhaan
what does false uphill mean?
I meant false flat...I was typing at 27 MPH, lol
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Old 08-17-04, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by danielmolloy
where I live, our tailwinds turn 27 into 35 REAL fast. It's great. There's no wind resistance against you at all. It's completely silent at 35mph
What;s creepy and cool is when you are descending at 40+ and you feel that floating sensation and the bike feels like a part of your feet...and you are right...it's silent
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Old 08-17-04, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by temp1
Hay I think that was me, here is how, tail wind, ever so slight downward grade, I was feeling unusually strong that day, and I was absolutly blowing up to keep that pace. Basically I had everything going my way, will that ever happen again? Probably not.
I was actually just goofing on the 27 number...we used to laugh about golfers saying they hit it 290 because anybody who knows jack won't say 300, it sets off the BS meter. I actually believe you went 27, I remember your post...
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Old 08-17-04, 10:17 AM
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The group rides I did over the summer would occasionally see semi pro riders tag along just to taunt the rest of us. Hell I had a hard time keeping up when they took off. We would carry 27-30 for a mile or two, a couple of guys hammering up front and the rest of us scattered out over a quarter mile with numb legs and no breath. Makes you think about how hard it is to race in Pro,1,2 races.

There was also a pro or semi pro tri chick that would come out on the flat rides. She could carry major speed for a long time. We had a tandem show up one week that kept going off the front. She got tired of them doing that so when they hammered off the front on a stretch that was free of stop signs for a few miles she said something about the tandem pissing her off and there she went. Probably carried 30+ to catch and pass them. The looks on the tandem rider's faces were priceless.
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Old 08-17-04, 12:13 PM
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Let me get this straight.

27 mph = 43 kph.

I'm about to get really friggin depressed here. I usually average around 27kph/17mph at an average cadence around 90-100rpm on my usual 100 k road ride. And you guys are telling me, you average 43kph! Sh*t, I think I'll keep riding solo.
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Old 08-17-04, 12:23 PM
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27 kph = almost 17 mph

I do round about that too so you can ride with me if you're ever over here!
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Old 08-17-04, 12:27 PM
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hmm just though of something
for Americans put your bike comp on kph and it will look like you done more
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Old 08-17-04, 12:27 PM
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I've got my average up to around 21mph and thats about 85%-90% effort...i can't imagine going 27mph or even 25mph.....seems unatainable for me.




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Old 08-17-04, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by TechJD
hmm just though of something
for Americans put your bike comp on kph and it will look like you done more
good idea. you could also input a larger wheel size.
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Old 08-17-04, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by stiffee_shane
Let me get this straight.

27 mph = 43 kph.

I'm about to get really friggin depressed here. I usually average around 27kph/17mph at an average cadence around 90-100rpm on my usual 100 k road ride. And you guys are telling me, you average 43kph! Sh*t, I think I'll keep riding solo.
No man...100K at 17 MPH is pretty strong. I averaged about 19.5 during my racing days...on race day you get3-4 MPH more...and sometimes even better just from the adrenaline. It's pretty easy to hold 24 MPH in a draft...a lot harder to bang away all day long at 20 MPH into the wind...that's why those TDF guys look like they are out for a lunch ride when they are tucked into the pack and cruising...it's just a different deal.
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Old 08-17-04, 12:37 PM
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I think the thread is meant to be a tongue-in-cheek jab at those that post that they attain the magic 27 number. I think it's fair to say that most of us can do 27 for short bursts and maybe longer, especially in an organized group setting, but to AVERAGE 27 mph for an entire ride over 15 or more miles (with hills) would put us into the world class category.

I don't know about you guys, but I'm certainly not there.

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Old 08-17-04, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by zensuit
No man...100K at 17 MPH is pretty strong. I averaged about 19.5 during my racing days...on race day you get3-4 MPH more...and sometimes even better just from the adrenaline. It's pretty easy to hold 24 MPH in a draft...a lot harder to bang away all day long at 20 MPH into the wind...that's why those TDF guys look like they are out for a lunch ride when they are tucked into the pack and cruising...it's just a different deal.
Whew! Thanks. Here I am sitting thinking to myself, yep I'm doing alright and then a post like this comes along and I'm like, "ah crap! You gotta be kidding me, right?" I'll head out for my usual ride on Saturday secure in the knowledge that I'm not a snail.
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