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Old July 28th 08, 03:49 AM posted to,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Edward Dolan
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Posts: 14,212
Default TdF and recumbents

"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional wisdom
says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw out all
personal observations here, since they invariably involve recumbents that
are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and riders considerably
less able than a UCI professional.

Excuses, excuses, excuses!

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders, both
upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that rolling
resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will dominate, which
favors the upright. However, with a professional level rider putting out
400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that aerodynamics does matter,
even on a relatively steep climb, and an upright rider out of the saddle
is not very aerodynamic. Is the aerodynamic advantage of the recumbent at
very high rider output levels enough to compensate for the advantages of
the upright? I do not know, and more importantly, neither does anyone

Aerodynamics is only part of the story. The other part is primate anatomy
and physiology.

Please rush me a telegram if and when a recumbent ever beats an upright in a
professional cycling race in the mountains.


Ed Dolan the Great - Minnesota
Saint Edward the Great - Order of the Perpetual Sorrows - Minnesota


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