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Advice for draft-legal racing
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iainm




Joined: 10 Sep 2005
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:27 pm    Post subject: Advice for draft-legal racing Reply with quote

I'm thinking about entering a couple of draft-legal races in 2017. I've done a lot of triathlons, but never this format.

I know I can't use my TT bike (so good excuse for a new bike), but wondered if any TriTalkers have experience of draft-legal races and have any advice/tips?
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PCP




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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Work on your swim a lot and pack riding skills.
You don't want to get left behind or take a group out Shocked
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jibberjim




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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you can't swim with the fastest, don't bother.
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jibberjim wrote:
If you can't swim with the fastest, don't bother.


Because?

Great potential for all round development....

But prepare well, particularly with bike handling, and general pace management
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jibberjim




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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 6:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

explorerJC wrote:
jibberjim wrote:
If you can't swim with the fastest, don't bother.


Because?

Great potential for all round development....

But prepare well, particularly with bike handling, and general pace management


Because you'll be riding around by yourself as everyone else rides away from you in a pack. I guess if there are events where packs can form other than at the front, then that's fine too, but the ones I've watched (admittedly all in holland) anyone who wasn't out of the swim early rode around in ones and twos. No need for bike handling or anything else and just the same as a draft illegal event.
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TriSam




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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you do find yourself in a big pack, riding smart is way more important than riding hard.
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jibberjim wrote:
explorerJC wrote:
jibberjim wrote:
If you can't swim with the fastest, don't bother.


Because?

Great potential for all round development....

But prepare well, particularly with bike handling, and general pace management


Because you'll be riding around by yourself as everyone else rides away from you in a pack. I guess if there are events where packs can form other than at the front, then that's fine too, but the ones I've watched (admittedly all in holland) anyone who wasn't out of the swim early rode around in ones and twos. No need for bike handling or anything else and just the same as a draft illegal event.


having raced draft legal on and off in belgium for years, i always found at least one back wheel and, more often that not with a little work, we caught up others and formed a good group. it was never the front pack, but often i hit T2 with the 2nd or 3rd group...
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iainm




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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 6:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TriSam wrote:
If you do find yourself in a big pack, riding smart is way more important than riding hard.


Thanks TriSam - what do you see as 'riding smart'?


ExplorerJC wrote:
more often that not with a little work, we caught up others and formed a good group


That's interesting - did you talk to each other to organise and work together?


jibberjim wrote:
If you can't swim with the fastest, don't bother.

Unfortunately I can't swim with the fastest - it's already my weakest discipline, but I usually find I gain a lot of places on the bike. I can see I would gain fewer in this format, but I often see packs drafting in non-legal races, so I'm wondering if it's really that different.

Has anyone actually raced draft-legal triathlon in the UK? I'm thinking about Eton, where it's a lot of laps, so depending which wave I'm in there will always be a lot of people out on the bike course already
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surfdragon




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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've done Barcelona Olympic dist a couple of times which is draft legal. Riding is my worst discipline so it really helped me out to get some decent times, but you do have to be careful with the packs you get into. Some of the riders have no experience of riding in a group and carnage can develop!!
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Jorgan




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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It depends massively on the event & your AG group; and whether it'S in AG waves I should think.

I guess we're not talking elite level races here, so the standard of swimming is going to be lower and spread-out, just like non-drafting events. Okay I've never done a Draft-legal event, but I'm pretty sure swimming <12:00 for 750m is not going to let me down as a Vet, for example. In fact as an above average Vet swimmer and solid runner, I should probably be doing this drafting malarky!
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TriSam




Joined: 26 Aug 2011
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 10:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

iainm wrote:
TriSam wrote:
If you do find yourself in a big pack, riding smart is way more important than riding hard.


Thanks TriSam - what do you see as 'riding smart'?



Some will only come with practice, but some of the important ones:

Rotating through-and-off effectively by reducing surges on the front
Positioning yourself towards the front of the pack at the beginning of climbs/tight bends to avoid the "rubber band" effect
Don't do too much work on the front

I imagine MOP draft legal racing will be a lot more difficult than FOP, because of larger discrepancies in fitness and cornering ability. If you find yourself in a bunch that's unwilling to work or is riding unsafely, get yourself out of there quickly!

If you get a chance before your racing starts, get yourself down to some local crit races. Even if you get dropped within the first 10 minutes of your first race, I guarantee you'll learn something
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fat buddha




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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 10:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

iainm wrote:
TriSam wrote:
If you do find yourself in a big pack, riding smart is way more important than riding hard.


Thanks TriSam - what do you see as 'riding smart'?


ExplorerJC wrote:
more often that not with a little work, we caught up others and formed a good group


That's interesting - did you talk to each other to organise and work together?


jibberjim wrote:
If you can't swim with the fastest, don't bother.

Unfortunately I can't swim with the fastest - it's already my weakest discipline, but I usually find I gain a lot of places on the bike. I can see I would gain fewer in this format, but I often see packs drafting in non-legal races, so I'm wondering if it's really that different.

Has anyone actually raced draft-legal triathlon in the UK? I'm thinking about Eton, where it's a lot of laps, so depending which wave I'm in there will always be a lot of people out on the bike course already


Iain - there's a draft legal race right on your doorstep at Brighton & Hove Tri. or there was this - and I'm assuming it will be there again next year. the only problem with it this year was a) the small field of only 22, and b) the swim course was too long (was actually 1350m instead of 750m!) which meant that everyone was well strung out by the time they exited the swim and the bike ended up as non-drafting as it was impossible to get anyone together given the numbers.

but - it has potential to develop and is one of the few closed road draft legal tris in the UK.

I was TO there this year but sadly can't do next year due to other commitments
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Jorgan




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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TriSam wrote:

Rotating through-and-off effectively by reducing surges on the front
Positioning yourself towards the front of the pack at the beginning of climbs/tight bends to avoid the "rubber band" effect
Don't do too much work on the front

I imagine MOP draft legal racing will be a lot more difficult than FOP, because of larger discrepancies in fitness and cornering ability.


Good pack riding is only going to be possible with a small number of people, otherwise it gets unmanageable; just look at WTS!

I reckon 3-6 committed riders is plenty when you're talking AGers. Easy to communicate in small numbers.
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

iainm wrote:
TriSam wrote:
If you do find yourself in a big pack, riding smart is way more important than riding hard.


Thanks TriSam - what do you see as 'riding smart'?


ExplorerJC wrote:
more often that not with a little work, we caught up others and formed a good group


That's interesting - did you talk to each other to organise and work together?


jibberjim wrote:
If you can't swim with the fastest, don't bother.

Unfortunately I can't swim with the fastest - it's already my weakest discipline, but I usually find I gain a lot of places on the bike. I can see I would gain fewer in this format, but I often see packs drafting in non-legal races, so I'm wondering if it's really that different.

Has anyone actually raced draft-legal triathlon in the UK? I'm thinking about Eton, where it's a lot of laps, so depending which wave I'm in there will always be a lot of people out on the bike course already


As much as there is an international language to cycling... Ie...French...yes, but work rate was pretty much down to the willingness of each person...that said, the more skilled riders always made some form of gap at every corner compared to the less skilled....
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jorgan wrote:
TriSam wrote:

Rotating through-and-off effectively by reducing surges on the front
Positioning yourself towards the front of the pack at the beginning of climbs/tight bends to avoid the "rubber band" effect
Don't do too much work on the front

I imagine MOP draft legal racing will be a lot more difficult than FOP, because of larger discrepancies in fitness and cornering ability.


Good pack riding is only going to be possible with a small number of people, otherwise it gets unmanageable; just look at WTS!

I reckon 3-6 committed riders is plenty when you're talking AGers. Easy to communicate in small numbers.


In the UK, being bike fit and having good pack cycling skills are not necessarily both ever present.....apart from perhaps the elite squads who have several years head start (and even then, not always that skilled)....there will be a lot of 'moments' I am sure Smile
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