(Example: Events:Cirque du Cyclisme:2007)

Date: Mon, 25 Jul 2005 06:24:38 -0700 (PDT)
From: Jerome & Elizabeth Moos <>
Subject: Re: [CR]TDF and BIKES
In-Reply-To: <>

It's maybe 99% rider and team, 1% bike, and that may be generous to the role of the bike. Of course, that assumes we are talking about two bikes used by current teams. Maybe if you forced someone to use 1967 PX-10, he might be at a 2% disadvantage, maybe with a Schwinn Varsity or a 1948 Cambio Corsa machine, a 4% disadvantage.

The reason some pros, or at least some directeurs sportifs, obsess over equipment is that the the % margin between winning and losing is so small. Lance won this year's TdF with a total time of 86:15:02. Increase that time 1%, and he would have had a time of 87:06:45. That would have put him in 27th place, behind Georg Totschnig and just ahead of Mikel Astorloza.

So the bike companies push, and some of the pro teams buy into, the idea that those $5000 machines can at least cut a tenth percent or two from total time, which could still be the difference between first and fifth. Is it true? Who knows?

However, for tourists and recreational riders, even a 4% loss of efficiency should be greeted with a reaction of "So what?" One's happiness with the look and feel of the bike is more important. And even for amateur racers, the difference in rider strength is probably so great that the winner might well still win on that 1967 PX-10.


Jerry Moos Houston, TX wrote: I am just a recreational solo rider who enjoys leisurely 20 -40 mile rides in the country on week ends. The whole world of professional racing is foreign to me. So here is my question for the group:

What per cent of the success in the Tour De France is attributable to the bike that is being ridden, rather than the rider and the team? If the number one and two finishers of this years TDF had been riding each others bikes (custom fitted to their anatomy of course) would the results have been different? What would happen if modern TDF participants were required to ride only the classic bikes we talk about on this list?

Thank you.
C.J. Scheiner, Brooklyn, NY