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Top 10 Ways To Get More Aero On Your Bike

Top 10 Ways To Get More Aero On Your Bike


Shave your legs? The jury’s out on whether
this makes any difference at all, but let’s face it – flash bike, flash kit, hairy legs…
wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong! Going out and buying new bike bling is great
– especially when each year brings new and more aerodynamic equipment. But the cheapest
way to get aero on a road bike is a set of clip-on aero bars. They’ll allow you to get
in the right position on a standard road bike, potentially saving a couple of minutes over
a 40km time trial. Don’t ride on the drops? Gerard Vroomen, founder
of Cervelo, clearly knows a thing or two about aerodynamics.
He reckons that straight arms in the drops cause more resistance than bent arms on the
hoods. Again, watch how the pros do it: arms at 90 degrees, body nice and low, back flat. Tuck your elbows in – and your knees. In fact,
don’t just do that, get your whole position looked at. There’s no point dropping thousands
on the latest carbon wheels if your position is terrible. A good position on the bike will save heaps
of watts in power output. For good examples, look no further than Messrs Wiggins, Cancellara
and Martin. Don’t forget your feet! Most cycling shoes
have masses of straps, buckles and other uneven surfaces – all of them catch the wind. Simple solution is to cover up with an aero
overshoe. British time-trial champion Alex Dowsett takes overshoes to a whole new level. Skinsuits: no they’re not just for lycra fetishists.
Racing kit has been getting tighter and tighter and skinsuits have started creeping into regular
road races as well. There’s no doubt a skinsuit will make you more slippery through the air,
but with no pockets, where are you supposed to put your banana? Wearing gloves in a time trial will slow you
down more than a non-aero front wheel. Gloves are also getting more aero: look closely
at the top pros’ hands: aero mitts are fitted and extend well beyond the wrist. Just watch
out for the silly tan lines if you go down this route! Having a water bottle on your seat tube is
more aero than not having one at all, and significantly more aero than having one on
your downtube. Then again, the likes of Bradley Wiggins,
world champ Tony Martin and Fabian Cancellara don’t always bother: but not all of us mere
mortals have got the horsepower they do. How you put your race numbers on matters more
than what wheels you’re riding. Watch the pros in races – do you see their
race numbers flapping about? No! Because flappy race numbers catch the wind – like racing
into the wind with a sail pulling you back. A non aero helmet causes four times the drag
of an aero wheelset. An aero helmet is only an eighth of the price
of some wheels. But you can’t wear a time trial helmet in
a road race. Aero road helmets are starting to catch on in the pro peloton, but the jury’s
out on whether they look good! For more videos like this, go to www.youtube.com/gcn
and subscribe now for free.

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