Friday, January 1, 2010

position evolution over the decades

Well, maybe not as much as one might think.




Anquetil broke the hour record in 1956 with 46.159 km covered. He's arguably the best all-time in road time trials, having won Grand Prix des Nations a ridiculous 9 times over 14 years from 1953 to 1966.

Taylor Phinney is reigning world pursuit champion, and more to come...

3 comments:

Alison Chaiken said...

Probably UCI rules prevent real innovations like riders wearing fairings strapped on their chests, which means that equipment innovations can't make significant position changes pay off.

djconnel said...

True -- the UCI rules have a huge effect. Sam Whittingham went 90 km in an hour on the track in 2009:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hour_record


Operating within the rules as they existed through the 1990's, the positions developed by Graham Obree look a lot different than Anquetil's, until the UCI squashed them.

Still, Anquetil's position is rather impressive given how "conventional" his equipment is.

Alison Chaiken said...

The annoying part about the UCI rules is that they prevent bike companies from developing and marketing innovations that riders like us would enjoy. Designers have continued to make bikes lighter than the rules permit, but they might have done a lot more with less regulation. Soon the weight reduction will have run its course, just like the doubling of CPU clock speed has.

Asked recently at the Team Radio Shack press conference about taking on the hour record, a certain famous racer wryly remarked that "Fabian Cancellara should attempt it."