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What is your fastest sprint speed on a flat, no wind road?
And what kind of speed is needed to place well in a cat5 race?
 

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With a good lead out...A little over 40 mph, which has been good enough to win CAT 4 mens races.

No lead out...38 mph - 39 mph...maybe more since I've never really tried before.
 

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40 mph.

Just remember that its the internet, so subrtract 15% from whatever anyone sez.

A good sprint isn't that necessary to win 5's. Just decent fitness and some tactics. Stay up front, stay out the wind and wait until you're sure your effort will get you the win (which is usually the final sprint)
 

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cat 5 is mayhem at best. your end of race positioning and ability to conserve energy count far more than top end speed. i've podiumed a number of times when I was a 5 without sprinting or going off the front. its quite often enough to simply have the gas left to hold your position through the finish line
 

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Wookiebiker said:
With a good lead out...A little over 40 mph, which has been good enough to win CAT 4 mens races.

No lead out...38 mph - 39 mph...maybe more since I've never really tried before.

40???? ha...these forums really are full of crap!
 

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bjkfly said:
40???? ha...these forums really are full of crap!
Actually, I have my Powertap numbers from my last race...though it was only 39.28 mph in that sprint but it wasn't the best that I could do. So far my best Powertap max reading is 1568 watts, though I know I can do better...5 second numbers are 1360 watts and I know I can do better than that as well.

Believe or not believe...your choice.
 

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Wookiebiker said:
Actually, I have my Powertap numbers from my last race...though it was only 39.28 mph in that sprint but it wasn't the best that I could do. So far my best Powertap max reading is 1568 watts, though I know I can do better...5 second numbers are 1360 watts and I know I can do better than that as well.

Believe or not believe...your choice.
Given those numbers, why are you still a Cat 4?
 

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iktome said:
Given those numbers, why are you still a Cat 4?
Lack of overall races...If I don't have any mishaps I'll be a CAT 3 after next weekend.

Last year I only had 7 road races as I'm more of a TT guy and those don't count toward upgrading. I also did a lot of Short Track XC, some Dirt Crits and some Cyclocross last year. I'm an Expert (CAT 1 this year) MTB'er.
 

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supermex said:
Cat 4's with powertaps?!
Heck, 3/4 of my team now has powertaps and lots of those are CAT 5's and or Masters 50+ riders. We get a pretty good deal on them :)
 

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I don't see anything wrong with owning a power meter, regardless of ability. Just another tool to help improve.

I'm a Cat 2 and no, I don't own one.
 

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supermex said:
Cat 4's with powertaps?!
technically, i'm a cat 5 with a powertap and there were other powertap users in the few cat 4/5 crits i've done this year. although i mainly race mtn bike and 'cross. plus they can be had pretty cheap if you buy them used from teammates. i've had mine since the end of december and find it helps me focus more during training on getting and keeping efforts higher during intervals.
 

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I have been contemplating buying a Power Tap and I have no plans at all to race. If I buy one it will because I want to see how much I am improving in a quantifiable manner. I do love riding... and this is would be one more way to enjoy it. :)
 

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supermex said:
So is saving your money and riding more. But to each their own. Some people think you can but speed.
Yeah..save some money and ride 30h/wk like some on this forum. You'll get strong and fast :p

But 40mph and Cat. 4...geez...that's good. Get to cat. 3 and unleash your sprint and you'll win many races. Most guys who win cat. 3 races can't spring that faston your average course.
 

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waste?

Donzo98 said:
I have been contemplating buying a Power Tap and I have no plans at all to race. If I buy one it will because I want to see how much I am improving in a quantifiable manner. I do love riding... and this is would be one more way to enjoy it. :)
I bought an SRM and used it for a year, and then sold it. I found that it really did not help, other than providing data that I didn't know what to do with it. I found that I could make about 1350 watts in a sprint. Ok. I found that in May I could make 270 watts average in 10 mile time trial, which reduced to 235 watts two months later while working with a coach the entire time, despite my heart rate remaining the same. Ok.

I think power numbers are almost useless for most people. Heart rate seems more meaningful to me, as it tells me how hard I'm working compared to my capacity at that moment. What my average power number was two months ago, which I might try to use for pacing, is useless. The only thing I can think of to make them useful is if you are working with a coach who really knows what he is doing, and he is doing a complete analysis of all of your data, then designing workouts from day to day taking advantage of the data. Otherwise, the numbers are misleading or at best an interesing curiosity.

The best way to quantify your improvement is on the road measurements, time trials, both flat and hill climbs. That's all that matters in races, anyway. There are no competitions for who can make the best numbers on their power meter.
 

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A power meter is not just for watching for improvements- it's also for establishing intensity.
Basically, you figure out what average wattage is for an hour all-out effort (or 20 min average *.95) then calculate training intensities based on that number.
If you do this, you'll quickly realize the benefit over heart rate- if you interval train with HR, there is a lag period for ~2min at the beginning of your interval. You also deal w/HR drifting up over time. With power, you know what wattage you should hold for an interval, and you do it- no waiting for HR to rise, and no risk of slowing down to stay in a HR range just because of HR drift.

It's all about accuracy.
 
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