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Zwift - the advantages of riding with pace partners.

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Zwift - the advantages of riding with pace partners.

Old 01-03-22, 09:51 AM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post

In terms of ride feel and effort it's like a counter-intuitive group ride to me. It's mostly a tempo ride, but climbing up to the onsen village, I have to take it easy (sometimes very easy, dropping into Z1 efforts) just to make sure I don't leave them behind and lose my drops multiplier. Then rolling downhill after the castle it's a high cadence interval at above threshold efforts to keep them at bay.
Doesn't sound very good to be honest.
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Old 01-03-22, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Doesn't sound very good to be honest.
Yeah, my main complaint about Zwift's implementation of the pace partners is that they move at a constant Wattage - whether it be uphill, downhill, or on the flats. Depending on your power output and your weight, this may or may not be of concern but for very light people like me, the downhill can be a struggle.
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Old 01-04-22, 06:41 AM
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Originally Posted by redcon1 View Post
Although I always ride off from the front of the C Pace Partner unless I am mindful of the gradients, It seems like a huge jump to me to hang on the the B rider group. I guess because its near or closer to my threshold power-- but after 15 minutes I am toast.

I wish there was a C+ or B- option.
Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
yeah, thats' me also. I have to really want to volunteer for the pain cave if I'm going to try to hang with Bowie for an extended period.
Try doing a Coco ride using a MTB or TT bike.

Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post
Yeah, my main complaint about Zwift's implementation of the pace partners is that they move at a constant Wattage - whether it be uphill, downhill, or on the flats. Depending on your power output and your weight, this may or may not be of concern but for very light people like me, the downhill can be a struggle.
What I find a bit odd is that Zwift decided to give each bot leader different physical characteristics. Eg. Coco is 65kg, Brevet is 80kg, so their visible w/kg readings while in-game can be a bit misleading. Brevet is further away in ability from Coco than you'd otherwise assume.

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Old 01-05-22, 10:34 PM
  #79  
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Well that explains why D Diesel is so terribly slow uphill that I can be spinning at practically zero effort and still drop them... and then they suddenly catch up on the downhill.

Also why with a good draft, I can keep up with B Brevet for a decent amount of time (20 minutes is my best so far), but the moment there's any sort of moderate distance/grade downhill I'm eating their virtual dirt.
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Old 01-14-22, 08:51 AM
  #80  
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I didn't know about the Pace Partners. This month, I am using the Tour de Zwift as my motivation to keep Zwifting; can the pacing bots be used in those rides? Otherwise, I am off the back and it's hard to stay enthused.
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Old 01-15-22, 10:30 AM
  #81  
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Originally Posted by bblair View Post
I didn't know about the Pace Partners. This month, I am using the Tour de Zwift as my motivation to keep Zwifting; can the pacing bots be used in those rides? Otherwise, I am off the back and it's hard to stay enthused.
There are no pace bots in event rides I'm afraid.
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Old 01-16-22, 09:06 AM
  #82  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
There are no pace bots in event rides I'm afraid.
Yes, I found that out yesterday.

I was planning to ride Stage 2 of Tour du Zwift, but got stuck in the slow connect-update-reboot-reconnect-change worlds scenario. Luckily, they allowed late join, which dropped in with the big boys a few miles up the road. Eventually, about 900 of the 1500 riders passed me by and I ended up in the appropriate group anyway. Maybe I have a new strategy.
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Old 02-06-22, 01:04 AM
  #83  
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Started riding the bots with D but he is so slow, I just kept riding off the front. After about 4 times I would find others doing the same and form a small group and ride about 2.2W/Kg (165 and 6’1” and shrinking). That was fine but even recovery rides with D (I am not on a first named basis with any of the bots, which I find a bit creepy in a familiar kind of way) I don ‘t always find a small group and end up solo which was not the purpose.

So recently been riding with C and find it amusing that if I find myself going off the front, I am fenced or rubber banded back into the mob. I get dragged back and to get back up where I was I typically have to put out 4W/Kg over and over which gets tiring, so eventually I just surrender and ride the mob a couple of rows back. I guess its good for practicing short full gas sprints but find it odd that D allows me to go off the front easily. I might have hurt his too familiar synthetic feels and he just wants me to go.
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Old 02-06-22, 07:37 PM
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
Started riding the bots with D but he is so slow, I just kept riding off the front. After about 4 times I would find others doing the same and form a small group and ride about 2.2W/Kg (165 and 6’1” and shrinking). That was fine but even recovery rides with D (I am not on a first named basis with any of the bots, which I find a bit creepy in a familiar kind of way) I don ‘t always find a small group and end up solo which was not the purpose.

So recently been riding with C and find it amusing that if I find myself going off the front, I am fenced or rubber banded back into the mob. I get dragged back and to get back up where I was I typically have to put out 4W/Kg over and over which gets tiring, so eventually I just surrender and ride the mob a couple of rows back. I guess its good for practicing short full gas sprints but find it odd that D allows me to go off the front easily. I might have hurt his too familiar synthetic feels and he just wants me to go.
I've ridden off the front of Coco many dozens of times, and I've never experienced this. I am not sure what you are experiencing, but AFAIK, there is no fencing or rubber banding with the Pace Partners.

Perhaps you are just finding that i's a little hard to ride off the front of Coco because you don't have the drafting advantage of Coco's "mob". OTOH, sustaining 4 w/kg or even a fair bit less should be enough to escape, even going solo.

But for my money, the fun of "riding off the front" of Coco is doing it with a group.
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Old 02-06-22, 11:26 PM
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No doubt should have said, instead, when riding in the lead group, I am pulled back into the mob - or if maintaining a steady pace, the mob surges forward and past me. Then I put out 4 W to pull myself back to a front most position. Then the group surges forward again and I have to sprint to retain my front position. Next time I won’t back off and see if I can break free and away just for fun.
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Old 02-07-22, 08:00 AM
  #86  
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In my experience, it's not so much that the group is surging, it's that I'm not paying attention to the terrain and I'm not ready to stay on top of the pedals when the slope goes downhill. If you crest that virtual hill and the trainer pulls the rug out from under you, you'll spend a couple of frantic seconds click-clacking in to an appropriate gear, during which you'll give up position and possibly get spit out the back. Making that up can be a chore.

I obviously didn't understand this the first couple of times riding with Coco, and my efforts showed that - with power all over the place, yo-yoing between high and low output. Now? Coco is a nice snooze-fest recovery ride with my Av HR typically in the 110bpm range.
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Old 02-07-22, 11:17 AM
  #87  
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
In my experience, it's not so much that the group is surging, it's that I'm not paying attention to the terrain and I'm not ready to stay on top of the pedals when the slope goes downhill. If you crest that virtual hill and the trainer pulls the rug out from under you, you'll spend a couple of frantic seconds click-clacking in to an appropriate gear, during which you'll give up position and possibly get spit out the back. Making that up can be a chore.

I obviously didn't understand this the first couple of times riding with Coco, and my efforts showed that - with power all over the place, yo-yoing between high and low output. Now? Coco is a nice snooze-fest recovery ride with my Av HR typically in the 110bpm range.
i did exactly this with C in the muir woods. totally not paying attention and got dropped on a descent. took forever to catch up but i finally did. happened a second time but not able to catch up again and i just gave up. when i road with B a couple of times, it was hard but also hard to get dropped.
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Old 02-08-22, 10:56 AM
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I've always jumped onto the bots randomly and never just done an entire ride start-to-finish with them. I usually will do 20-30 mins then either get dropped, end up too far off the front and lose the multiplier, or get bored and turn off onto another route.

This morning I set out to start and ride steady with C. Cadence for an hour - Sand and Sequoias route. This route includes the little 1.6 mile Titans Grove KOM climb/descent. I managed to anticipate the climbs and descents, and stayed within 10M of Coco the entire time.

The result was 23.15mi and 1132ft of elevation gain. I averaged 164 watts, which works out to 2.2 w/kg. This was almost entirely zone 2 HR for me. Power was 17% Z1, 45% Z2, 25% Z3. I averaged 91rpm on cadence and tried to keep a steady/smooth pedal stroke. This was a relatively easy ride for me. 2.5 w/kg would work out to an average of 188 watts, which is closer to what I'm normally averaging on a solo Zwift ride with some bigger climbing (like the Mountain Route). Those solo rides are mostly tempo - Zone 3 on both power and HR for me, though I tend to go a little harder on the climbs and then relax/spin on the descents.

Also my "group" on Strava after uploading this morning included 108 riders. I've always been curious as to how big these groups get...

I rode a Canyon Aeroad with Zipp 808 wheels (I pretty much only use this setup now). I am wondering how different these numbers would be on the gravel bike, or maybe even with a less aero wheelset, etc. I haven't tried the B. Brevet group in a while, but generally find it to be a little too spicy for more than 10-15 minutes of riding, so maybe with some equipment tweaks I could make C. Cadence more into that elusive C+ group.
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Old 02-08-22, 11:45 AM
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For the first time, I gave Anquetil a try this morning. Knowing my power curve and her power-to-weight, I anticipated that extended climbs would be problematic. I was right. 17min up the Epic KOM was as long as I could hang on, though. If I could have gotten over one more hump and gotten a little rest, I think that I could have hung to the summit, but it wasn't to happen today. Next time.
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Old 02-10-22, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
For the first time, I gave Anquetil a try this morning. Knowing my power curve and her power-to-weight, I anticipated that extended climbs would be problematic. I was right. 17min up the Epic KOM was as long as I could hang on, though. If I could have gotten over one more hump and gotten a little rest, I think that I could have hung to the summit, but it wasn't to happen today. Next time.
Whoa. I wouldn't even try. She'd drop me in a hot minute, I think.
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Old 02-10-22, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
Whoa. I wouldn't even try. She'd drop me in a hot minute, I think.
On flat/rolling terrain, she's not too bad and not much different than Brevet - they both output about the same power. Well, except that the group that I joined was super small, 4 or 5 riders, so sheltering is tougher and getting detached could be an issue. I'll have to look over her schedule - if there's one that doesn't have 15+ min climbs, I might be able to hang for an entire round.
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Old 03-03-22, 05:21 PM
  #92  
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Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
I've always jumped onto the bots randomly and never just done an entire ride start-to-finish with them. I usually will do 20-30 mins then either get dropped, end up too far off the front and lose the multiplier, or get bored and turn off onto another route.

This morning I set out to start and ride steady with C. Cadence for an hour - Sand and Sequoias route. This route includes the little 1.6 mile Titans Grove KOM climb/descent. I managed to anticipate the climbs and descents, and stayed within 10M of Coco the entire time.

The result was 23.15mi and 1132ft of elevation gain. I averaged 164 watts, which works out to 2.2 w/kg. This was almost entirely zone 2 HR for me. Power was 17% Z1, 45% Z2, 25% Z3. I averaged 91rpm on cadence and tried to keep a steady/smooth pedal stroke. This was a relatively easy ride for me. 2.5 w/kg would work out to an average of 188 watts, which is closer to what I'm normally averaging on a solo Zwift ride with some bigger climbing (like the Mountain Route). Those solo rides are mostly tempo - Zone 3 on both power and HR for me, though I tend to go a little harder on the climbs and then relax/spin on the descents.

Also my "group" on Strava after uploading this morning included 108 riders. I've always been curious as to how big these groups get...

I rode a Canyon Aeroad with Zipp 808 wheels (I pretty much only use this setup now). I am wondering how different these numbers would be on the gravel bike, or maybe even with a less aero wheelset, etc. I haven't tried the B. Brevet group in a while, but generally find it to be a little too spicy for more than 10-15 minutes of riding, so maybe with some equipment tweaks I could make C. Cadence more into that elusive C+ group.
Update, I finally tried C Cadence on a gravel bike (Cervelo Aspero) and it's a huge difference.
I averaged 213 watts. 2.8 watts/kg.
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Old 03-03-22, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Update, I finally tried C Cadence on a gravel bike (Cervelo Aspero) and it's a huge difference.
I averaged 213 watts. 2.8 watts/kg.
Last week, I did an hour with Brevet in Makuri. Since the most significant climb on the route is gravel, I tried the Aspero. It was pretty easy to pace Brevet on the climb and back down... but then I got to the paved sections. Crap - I actually had to work to keep up! Since 2/3rds (or so) of the route is paved, I tried it again on a road bike yesterday. Yeah, much easier. So yeah, you can definitely use bike choice to help tune intensity if you find yourself wanting something in between two of the bot options.
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Old 03-10-22, 06:55 PM
  #94  
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Did a Cadence ride with a gravel bike today, since my level of motivation was somewhere between Cadence and Brevet. It was a little harder than I'd expected - closer to Brevet than vanilla Cadence. Ride durations on each of these is a little different, but the averages should give you an idea:

Regular Cadence ride (Canyon Aeroad 2021 and 808s) -



Cadence ride with a gravel bike (Cervelo Aspero and ENVE gravel wheels) -



Regular Brevet ride (Canyon Aeroad 2021 and 808s) -

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Old 03-16-22, 12:44 PM
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244 watts with avg bpm of 138. Wow.
I'd be pinned on that ride.
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Old 03-16-22, 01:16 PM
  #96  
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Wow, that is a bigger increase that I would have expected.
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Old 03-16-22, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
244 watts with avg bpm of 138. Wow.
I'd be pinned on that ride.
HR is a very individual parameter. For some people a bpm of 138 would represent a pretty hard effort, for others it would be barely above their recovery zone. Just depends how much of a high revving unit you have.
So you can only compare power directly across individuals, not HR.

For this particular 244W effort, intensity was 87% suggesting it was a fairly hard effort.
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Old 03-16-22, 05:21 PM
  #98  
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I've ridden with C-Cadence several times & have liked it quite a bit.
However, today I got distracted just as the pack was going downhill and fell off the back before I looked up.
I'm not great at downhill to begin with, and my trainer difficulty is set at 50%.
I was on the Specialized Atheos with the Meilenstein wheels and despite riding at >4.1 w/Kg I couldn't catch up.
But when I've paid attention it hasn't been difficult to stay in the pack.
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Old 03-16-22, 05:48 PM
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Yeah, I'm not a high-revver, my LTHR is somewhere in the low-to-mid 160s. That said, I don't use Strava to track TSS and haven't touched my FTP setting for a while, and it's probably a little low. Brevet is generally a nice tempo ride whereas I don't quite have the w/kg to hang with Anquetil on long climbs.
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Old 03-16-22, 05:53 PM
  #100  
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Originally Posted by Dancing Skeleton View Post
I've ridden with C-Cadence several times & have liked it quite a bit.
However, today I got distracted just as the pack was going downhill and fell off the back before I looked up.
I'm not great at downhill to begin with, and my trainer difficulty is set at 50%.
I was on the Specialized Atheos with the Meilenstein wheels and despite riding at >4.1 w/Kg I couldn't catch up.
But when I've paid attention it hasn't been difficult to stay in the pack.
Going downhill is the worst place to get detached from the group, because the aerodynamics really come in to play. If you're going to catch back on downhill, it's probably better to aim for your 20sec power rather than your 1min power.
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