You may hear, if you are a budding cyclist, that free or aerodynamic speed is a myth, that any cyclist can ride with the big dogs on just a slightly upgraded Specialized Allez. If, like me, you’ve been cycling for a while already, you’ve heard it for years. Say take the base model Allez as an example, or a Trek 1 series. The only additional thing they say you’ll need is some extra “want to”.
Sounds about right, yeah? The cycling industry creates it’s own need for bikes that range in price from $3,000 all the way to $12,500 when you can get the same from half the lower amount if you just push a little harder on the pedals and those who actually believe in “speed you can buy” are all rubes.
Of course, that wasn’t enough to stop me from dropping as much coin as I could on my bike but even I was a bit of a skeptic, I just liked the look of my bike.
The operative word in that last sentence is “was”. Then I read this article from outside magazine.
Read the article yourself, read the whole thing. If read with an open mind and you want to ride faster, you might just change your mind on that skepticism.
An average of the data from all 12 riders showed a collective 2-minute improvement with the ViAS and aero gear.
That’s over just 11.9 miles, and the use of the word “collective” in the quote can be misleading. It’s a poor choice of words in my opinion as each tester crossed the finish line an average of two minutes faster using aero gear over a comparably equipped non-aero bike and standard kit. Two minutes. That’s huge! It is anything but free, but it is real. Still, gotta pass on the skin suit. Some $#!+ a mid-40’s guy can’t get away with.