The 15 pound 6.8 Kg Limit Going Away and Zwift Racing

I watched the GCN show on youtube this morning after a recent blog comment got me thinking about it.  GCN or Global Cycling Network, are some British guys producing really excellent youtube videos on a wide range of cycling topics.  They cover road racing, mountain biking, ‘cross, commuting, and all kinds of technical stuff.  The GCN show is their weekly roundup and is on it’s 153 episode.  I found it very informative and lots of fun to watch.  I also learned something very interesting.

If you follow road bike racing you probably know that the UCI, the governing body of cycling, has a weight limit for bikes’ they must at least weigh 6.8 Kg or 15 pounds.  This weight limit is from the year 2000, and even 15 years ago it wasn’t hard to build a bike that went under that limit.  The rule was created to keep riders from riding unsafe bikes, but now it’s not uncommon for a 200 pound guy willing to shell out the cash to be riding a 14 pound or lighter bike while a 130 pound pro climber is stuck with a 15 pound bike.

Here’s a 14 pound off the shelf Trek Emonda

Well it appears the UCI is looking to replace the 15 pound blanket rule with  individually testing the bikes for safety.  This means that before long you’ll see riders on much lighter bikes.  It also means that disc brakes will probably not be making their way to the pro peloton.  Right now you can just about build a 15 pound bike with discs, but I don’t think too many riders would ride a heavier bike with discs, if they had the choice of a lighter bike with rim brakes.

How light can bikes get?  I remember long ago reading about a 7 pound road bike that was regularly ridden.  It costs an insane amount of money, and had very few off the shelf components, but still, a 7 pound road bike?  It looks like the bike is still around and has seen some upgrades, now it’s down to 6 pounds!  That’s insane and so is the 45,000 dollar price tag.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Now in a little news very far from the world’s lighest bike, I started working on Eli’s old Klein road bike yesterday.  The current plan is to make a flat bar bike for the rail trail.  I’ve a got a sweet old 21-12 7 speed cassette to use, and an amazing awesome stem/bar combo for it.  Going to be an awesome bike.

In other news I competed in my first Zwift ZTR race Tuesday.  ZTR stands for Zwift Training Race.  Essentially a bunch of Zwift riders all group up on the start line and race 2 laps.  It was a fun experience, but I’m not really up to it yet.  I didn’t have any problem hanging in the peloton, but when we hit the first big hill I went backwards.  The peloton splintered and I topped the hill with 3 other riders.  I pushed really hard to stay with these guys until the end of the first lap, at that point there was a waterfall of sweat coming over my face and my legs and lungs were burning.  It was the fastest lap I’ve recorded so far, but far from fast enough to stay with even the C group riders.

Here I am right in the middle of the ZTR C group

Here I am right in the middle of the ZTR C group

 

I’m pretty psyched to try again next Tuesday.

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About Matt Gholson

Cycling, school teaching, husband.
This entry was posted in Barn Door Cycling, Bikes and components, Racing, technology (geek) and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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