20 September 2015
After looking at the files from the Prologue we are going to follow the same two riders and look at the demands of the 136 kilometre Stage 2 of the National Canberra Tour.
Rider 1 is playing the role of domestique for the yellow jersey team, and rider 2 is an individual rider. On paper, rider 1 is the stronger rider. Both riders share the same threshold power, but rider 1 is 6 kilograms lighter. Yet, rider 2 finishes well ahead for this stage.
In this short analysis we compare the power distribution during this stage, illustrating the different demands placed on these two riders.
First we will look at the 3D power/time graph for rider 1. In this chart we can see the distribution of power every 30 minutes shown throughout the race. It is clear to see in this chart that rider 1 spent more time at higher power during the first hour of the race (red & green). This was consistent with his role of doing a lot of ‘grunt work’ for his team during this stage.
Compare this to rider 2 who was able to sit in and save more energy during the start of the race (red) with a lot of his time producing very low wattage. By sitting in and following wheels early he had conserved his energy. Consequently, in the last 30 minutes (light blue) he is able to spend time in a higher wattage bands.
This is confirmed when we look at a summary of time in each power zone for the two riders. Rider 1 spent more time at endurance, tempo and threshold power with less recovery time, reflective of the job his team required him to do during this stage.
Finally, we will look at the actual power tab and look at some of the actual power numbers needed to perform and finish at the pointy end of a National Series road race. Rider 1 had both a higher average and adjusted power, and a higher intensity factor for the race.
So in summary, Rider 1 worked harder and put out more power throughout the stage. However, the ability for rider 2 to be able to sit in and save energy allowed rider 2 to come out on top against a stronger rider.