The lighter rims will let you out-accelerate your bud, all other things being equal. I would think that once you pull ahead, the aero difference is too small to matter, so he would be forced to ride faster than you to catch up. He'll have a higher worload over the course of a ride. I'd be real surprised if the spoke aero effect is large enough to matter, but I could be wrong.
Ann Arbor, MI
> A riding buddy has a modern aluminum road bike. I have five complete
\r?\n> classic bikes. We are often evenly matched, but we wonder how classic
\r?\n> components hinder or maybe even help my performance. He has recently
\r?\n> purchased a new set of Neuvation high tech wheels. Upon weighing his
\r?\n> old modern wheels and my classic wheels... surprise surprise, mine
\r?\n> weigh exactly what his weigh when using a baby scale. As has been
\r?\n> discussed recently, mine weigh what his weigh even though mine have 32
\r?\n> spokes and his have 20. The difference, of course, is that his rims are
\r?\n> heavier but he makes it up with fewer spokes. I wouldn't imagine that
\r?\n> all this new technology is for naught, so aero rims and less spoke
\r?\n> count must count for some advantages. However classic light rims make
\r?\n> for other advantages. When all is said and done, if one wanted nothing
\r?\n> more than fast runs in competitive group rides, would one be faster
\r?\n> with the modern rims that have more weight at the circumference or
\r?\n> classic rims that have less at the outer edges but more wind turbulence
\r?\n> at the spokes? My instinct is that all this modern technology is faster
\r?\n> on some measurable level, but when push comes to shove, short of an
\r?\n> aero helmet, a skin suit, tri-bars, and disk wheels the pay off is tiny
\r?\n> for mild aero section wheels, sleek brake levers. aero brake levers and
\r?\n> blade like seat posts. Also, those clunky aero wheels end up looking
\r?\n> slower visually.
\r?\n> Garth Libre in Miami Fl.