52

In road racing there are lots of way to try and gain an advantage (or not to give others an advantage). Because this is a friendly race, I will break it down into friendly, indifferent and hostile tactics. Update 1: The OP updated their question to make it clear that they were a beginner and the other rider was a more experienced road rider. So I ...


27

They don't start slow because they are on a fixed gear (track) bike. They start slow because they are trying to coax the other rider into starting the sprint for the finish line before they do. The advantage is typically given to the rider behind the other because you have not only the element of surprise, but you also get a draft off the person in front. ...


26

The full answer depends exactly on the teams involved and the composition of the break but, in general, the key to understanding this isn't physics as much as it is game theory. In a race like the TdF, there are many separate competitions being run simultaneously: not just for the overall General Classification but also for stage wins, the (green) points ...


21

Let the co-worker pass and then draft behind them. It becomes a game of chicken to see who goes first. This is partially why road racing at the professional level is usually done in teams. The team works together letting riders take a turn in the front so that the race moves at a reasonable pace. The other option is to just give a good effort on an uphill ...


10

(MTB rider here, XC & DH, with little road exp.). There is a certain speed for which up to that speed you should pedal, above it you gain more from adopting the most aerodynamic position and use gravity the best you can. In my case I find this speed by trial and error in specific circumstances, because it changes according to slope, terrain, bike and ...


9

It's just considered to be bad sportsmanship to take advantage of another rider's mechanical problem. The underlying idea is that, as much as possible, the race shouldn't be determined by random strokes of bad luck. It should be won and lost based on riders' strength, bicycle handling proficiency, as understanding of race tactics. It is not technically ...


8

Rounding slightly to make the math easier (And all paces taken from the conversion machine at the Cool Running site: At 20 mph, you are covering 100m every 11 seconds. At 25mph, you are covering 100m every 9 seconds. (And yes, I'm mixing mph and meters). So the one going faster is gaining 2 seconds every 100m, so a 30 second gap will be bridged in 1500m. ...


7

There's also the somewhat nebulous concept of whether or not "the race is on". Basically if you're cruising along in the peloton it would be extremely bad form to suddenly attack out of nowhere when you hear that the leader has had a mechanical, been caught up in a crash, etc. But if people have already started attacking each other, it's less fair to expect ...


5

The best way to make it impossible for him to draft of you is to draft on him instead. You will then probably just end up taking turns. Competitive bike riding is not only about who is the best, but also who is the smartest and who has the best social skills. Or who - indeed - can act the 'meanest' as you mention this word. However I personally think you ...


4

You can combine strategies from track racing, namely match sprint, and road racing. In match sprint, the racers typically start very slow in order to not give any drafting advantage. This continues until one of the competitors decides that he/she can sprint to the finish line before the other can pass them and attacks. In road racing, a common strategy is ...


4

Here's a good article from a man who knows a thing or two: Coast or Pedal on a Downhill?, Joe Friel Aug-10 Key thing from the article is reference to a 50-40-30-20-10 rule: Coast (and focus on getting aero) at >50km/h Pedal easy at >40km/h Pedal steady at >30km/h Pedal moderately hard at >20km/h Pedal hard at >10km/h This lends itself more to racing ...


4

Don't forget that there is money involved! Every competition in the TDF has a cash prize. Every sprint. Every categorized mountain. Often towns along the way will have their own prizes, such as a cow, or your weight in champagne. Every team wants to take home some of the spoils, but you can't win if you don't play, so teams that aren't winning stages or ...


3

Cycling is a weird sport because you need to cooperate with your opponents. This leads to all kinds of surprising outcomes, such as choosing not to take advantage of an opponent's mechanical problem. We may refer to this as "poor form," but what it really is is bad politics. Rider A might take advantage of Rider B's bad luck one day, but may be dependent on ...


3

Depends on whom you ask. Ideally there should be surveys to answer questions like this. Surveys for contenders, team leaders, supporters and so on. Just to get a rough idea. It is certainly possible that, like jim's answer, a majority would say it is not the best sportmanship. But there will also certainly be others saying technical failure is, after all, ...


3

A weather dependent strategy is available when there is a stiff crosswind. Your wind shadow (i.e. the place where a drafter would want to ride) is "behind" you from the point of view of the wind you experience. You experience wind from straight ahead because you are going fast, and from the side because of the weather. The combined effective wind will come ...


2

how much time is required to close a gap of 100 metres, in a cycling race, for different differences in speed of leading and chasing group For a speed difference of 1 metre per second, the time is 100 seconds. For a speed difference of 2 metres per second, the time is 50 seconds. For a speed difference of 0.5 metres per second, the time is 200 seconds. ...


2

Staying in the middle is the worst thing to do as you can get boxed in unable to sprint your way out of trouble and the riders at the back can come around the top of you and drop you. You are reasonably safe at the front until there are fairly few riders left as it will be difficult for the whole group to come around you and you can sprint your way out of ...


2

I cannot answer the physiological aspect in any detail, however my understanding is that, given a recovery day with little activity, your muscles will begin the first phase of healing [inflamation etc], this is also coupled with your legs being heavy with toxins from the previous days racing. To avoid this, the healing part can be improved via active ...


2

I have no idea if it's efficient or powerful but I do know that ever since I was a kid right up until now it is pure FUN to pedal as fast as I can, get as much speed as I can, and then see how far it it carry me. Simple arithmetic.


2

This is apparently an informal race where you can set your own rules. So as suggested by criggie in the comments you might be able to agree a rule against drafting. In time trials, riders set off at one minute intervals, and drafting is explicitly banned. If one rider is close behind another I think the rules say they have to either back off or overtake. ...


1

There's a few possible answers: 1, For racing yes but as Jahaziel says, you will reach a point where either the effort is too great to increase speed or actually you're just spinning out 2, On a ride for fun or fitness there's no NEED to pedal downhill but I find that if it's downhill followed by an uphill it launches you into the hill with more momentum ...


1

Because wind resistance is proportional to velocity squared it takes more power to go from 30 to 32 than from 15 to 17. So you get more bang from your pedal power at lower speeds. If it is a relatively short downhill and you have considerable speed you are typically better off coasting and then pedal when you get to a flat or flatter section. You are better ...


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