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What questions can Analytic Cycling answer?
  • How much power does it take to go 15 kph up a 5% grade? How hard does a rider have to push on the pedals?
  • If a rider can produce 250 watts of power, what speed could be expected in a TT?
  • Is it reasonable that a rider would go as fast as 60 mph (26.8 m/s) down hill in the Tour? Does more power increase the speed? What about the weight of a rider?
  • Are wheels a significant factor in climbs?
  • Would an aero wheel be worth it a for an important sprint?
  • You are going to Nationals. Your friends have offered to let you use their racing wheels. They each claim theirs is the best. How do you pick?
  • A rider goes up a hill at an 80 cadence. The slope of the hill is 2.5%. Speed is 9 m/s. How much force is the rider putting on each pedal?
  • A pursuit rider wants some new wheels. He measures the weight and rotational inertia of several aero wheels and disks. How much benefit will there be?
  • Air density makes a difference in estimates of performance and it changes from day to day. Just how does one know the air's density?
  • You are thinking about spending an additional $1000 for the titanium Litespeed Vortex frame rather than the Litespeed Ultimate. How much difference will it make going up a hill?
  • A rider is doing a TT and sits up 300m to go. Realizing the mistake, the rider sprints to the end. Afterwards the coach says the time would have been better by 30 seconds if the rider had not sat up. Assume the rider is going 11m/s (25 mph) and sits up with 300 m to go, coasts for 15 seconds, and then sprints the remaining distance. What is the difference in time? Was the coach overly optimistic?
  • A rider can go up a 2.5% hill at 7.19 m/s with an 85 cadence, weights 110kg, and has a 0.6 frontal area. The watts are 293. The rider pedals by pushing down on the pedals only. In the Pedal Model, modify the fit points to give these watts and pedaling pattern. What would be the forces at the pedals? Plot the strength functions. Improve the forces by 10%. Now how fast up the hill?

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©1998 Tom Compton