Power Data Estimates for the climbing stages

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acoggan said:
What you call "the Krapcycle Defense" I call the ability to remain focused on the specific issue being discussed. Very important ability, that, especially if you wish to be a scientist. I can understand, though, how those with weak intellects could easily get confused.
Cannot see the forest for the trees, eh? You pulled the same crap on RBR when ignoring the obvious doping of Armstrong and others during the EPO heyday. "Hey, it might be possible if we ignore everything else and common sense as well."

So, Mr. Wizard, what are the chances that Froome went from a nobody, a rider so unremarkable that when he was being shelled from third rate amateur pelotons his own mother questioned whether he had any talent as a bike rider, to putting up performances on par with the most doped up riders of the last fifteen years? This is not some unknown Chinese man pulling a bicycle rickshaw in the vastness of China who never had his capabilities tested; it is a rider with a history that is readily available.
 
Turner29 said:
If you followed the post, you would have noted that I stated the conditions quiet clearly.

Again, on the assumption that Merckx' 6.2 w/kg for one hour in a 1975 lab test is accurate, 6.5 w/kg for an hour is quite plausible. Even if Merckx' test was only 30 minutes, 6.5 w/kg today in race conditions is plausible.
Since you don't have a closed mind you might be interested in this exchange from the JV1973 thread.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Le breton
Race horses' performances, as far as I know are not any faster now than they were 50 years ago.
How about humans? How about cyclists? How about lab equipment for VO2 measurement?
Anyway, over the last couple of weeks, in my spare time, I started a long-term project : determine the W/kg for some racers of the past.
I started with arguably the most outstanding climbing performance of the past 50+ years : Bahamontes' win in the Puy-de-Dôme TT for the 15th stage of the 1959 TdF on July 10th.

1. Federico Bahamontes en 36'15"
2. Gaul à 1'26"
3. Anglade à 3'00"
4. Rivière à 3'37"
5. Anquetil à 3'41"
6. Brankart à 3'59"
7. Saint à 4'01"
8. Huot à 4'17"
9. Mahé à 4'35"
10. Adriaenssens à 4'40"

What is striking is the huge time gap between BAHA and the likes of Gaul, Rivière or Anquetil. 10% faster than the latter!!!

I had to track down the exact course of the race but was lucky to enlist the help of Bernard Piguet - he won Paris-Brest-Paris in 1979 and 1983 - who has lived nearby for many years and has timed himself and others on that climb. Google map was a help, my memories of the place also.
Anyway, this is what I gathered :

Start at 455 meters (+/- a couple of meters) Rue canrobert, Intersection D942.

Finish of course at 1415 m after a little less than 100m of flat road.

Weight : Baha 65 kg
Bike + the rest : I guessed 12 kg
This being just outside "Michelin city" I have to assume that the road in 1959 was already very smooth, unlike Ventoux.
I took Crr = 0,0045

According to weather archives it was a very hot day. For the air density I took 1.09 at the bottom and 0.97 at the top ( Historic note : this is the place where Blaise Pascal showed that the air pressure goes down with altitude).

Near the start there is a short flattish section, but I figured it was short enough to be lumped with the rest of the first 4 kms.

CdA ----If you look at old ina.fr films of Baha you can see that he was almost sitting straight up on his bike.
I took 0.375 m^2 for the climbing sections and 0.34 m^2 for the flatter mid-section.
3 sectors
1) 0 - 4 km D+ = 310m air= 1,06 CdA = 0.375 m^2

2) 4 - 7,5 km D+ = 105 m air = 1,04 CdA = 0,34

3) 7,5 -12,4 km D+ = 545 m air = 1,0 CdA 0 = 0.375

I excluded the last 80 meters or so and reduced his time to 36'05
I also accounted for the start from 0 speed by reducing his time to 35'55" for the calculation.

With these data you get an SRM-like power output of 413 watts, ie 6.35 watts/kg (including a 2.5% transmission loss)

To estimate his VO2 I took 1 litre O2 <==> 78 watts which gives us 81,5 ml/mn.kg.

Now, what about VO2 max? If he was at 90-92% of his max, that would have been 88-90 ml/mn.kg.

Reminder : with 0-days of cycling 68-69 kg Boardman in 1996 did 442 (Keen) watts for 1 hour, ie 6.4-6.5 watts/kg.

I had just about finished my calculations when I read in "Pouvez-vous gagner le Tour" ( Polar - authors Portoleau and Vayer, page 47) that they had totally independently calculated a power output of 407 watts for Baha!

How about the wind?
It so happens that over the last 4.1 kms (4.2 - 0.1) from the toll house at 927 m to the summit, the roads circles around the mountain, and the gradient is a nearly constant 12%.

The split times at that 8.3 km mark was 19'42"
which means that over the last 4.1 km of climbing Baha needed 36'15" (-10sec) - 19'42 = 16'23" ( I exclude the last ~80 m. of flat road).

A calculation of the corresponding power output gives me 413 watts for that last section where the wind could not be a real factor. On that section the power exerted against the air amount only to about 3.5%! So it's really hard to be very wrong.

I insist on this as some forumers like Python from the height of his expertise in the manufacture of power meters look with utter contempt at calculations such as mine.

Doing the same 10 sec subtraction for the last 80 meters, the times needed for the top racers over that 4.1 km section were

Baha 16 : 23

Gaul + 59 sec
Anglade + 2 : 10
Rivière + 2 : 02
Anquetil + 2 : 21

Again excluding the last 80 m. or so, the total energy expenditure for Bahamontes was 898 kJ.

Out the 413 watts,
359 were against gravity, 21 watts account for the road and 33 for the air ( with the 2.5% transmission losses included each time)

You have enough info to estimate the errors on your own.
I gave you plenty of information to destroy my argumentation if you think i am full of ***.

Finally what about VAM?
section 1 at 413 watts over 7.75% slope 1640 m/h
section 2 ..........................3% incline 1035 m/h
section 3 ..........................11.1% slope 1780 m/h

(Note that last section includes 800meters before toll house).

A possibility for error that I can't exclude concerns the last 4.1 km : I don't know if the split time was measured exactly at the toll house or a short distance from it.

Anyway, I have done similar calculations for the Ventoux assuming no wind and got about 6.6 watts/kg for Vaughters which of course means :

1) that I would be extremely interested Jonathan in reading what your own measure /estimate is

2) that on EPO Bahamontes with the shape he was in on July 10th 1959 would have shattered Iban Mayo.
-------------------------------
JV's comment
THIS IS FASCINATING. Thanks.

I didn't have an SRM on for Ventoux, but I would say 6.6 would be about right, perhaps a bit low, as Ventoux tends to be windy and the cx might be a bit higher than on other climbs. Also, I had been testing on 15-20 min climbs in more the 6.8 region, prior to race. Mayo was on a newly paved road and an oddly zero wind day. I know, as I was there for OLN to interview Mayo (Phil and Paul don't speak Spanish, oddly enough)..

That's not to say Mayo wouldn't have beaten me, but maybe by a bit less!

But 6.35 vs 6.7 leaves us with a .35 difference or around 5-6%... Which would make sense as my natural hct at this time of year would be 48%. For Ventoux it was doped to 52%. So, an 8% gain in hb mass. This would lead to a 4-6% increase in power at FTP, considering the high density of the blood already (as to say 38% to 42% would lead to a slightly more linear relationship gain, as O2 delivery efficiency is greater, per red cell, in a less crowded blood stream)

This is a great example of why I do rely on numbers to give me an indication of whether doping is happening and whether its effective, more than I rely on rumors etc etc. The rumors can sometimes prove to be correct on IF doping is happening, but whether it's method is effective is another story.

Clearly EPO in 1999 was effective.



JV
 
Mar 18, 2009
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BroDeal said:
Cannot see the forest for the trees, eh?
Quite the opposite. That is, Turner29 and I are the ones speaking in terms of generalities (i.e., the forest), whereas you wish to focus on a specific individual (tree).

BroDeal said:
You pulled the same crap on RBR when ignoring the obvious doping of Armstrong and others during the EPO heyday. "Hey, it might be possible if we ignore everything else and common sense as well."
"Common sense" is for commoners...I prefer to deal with verifiable facts.
 
speaking of ventoux, i uploaded some stuff on the blog

http://climbing-records.blogspot.ro/2013/07/speed-glory-top-50-fastest-rides-on.html

and if i'm lucky enough to catch Le Breton here....what do you know about Jean Francois Bernard's time on Ventoux from Bedoin in that 1987 ITT?
i've read somewhere about 57:24 which i think is wrong and close to impossible for the last 21.5 kms

from the intermediates heard on the live broadcast, jeff managed 52:18 from sainte-colombe to the top . he clocked 27:26 on that intermediate point

that would mean if we take 57:24 as real that he raced the first 3.8 kms from bedoin in 5 minutes at 45.60 km/h lol....not even with a tornado on your tail you can do that
i approximated that he did that in around 8 minutes, even probably it was more
so around 1:00:30-1:01:00 for the last 21.5 kms??

so what do you think?faster than charly gaul for sure?
 
Jul 12, 2012
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Le breton said:
Since you don't have a closed mind you might be interested in this exchange from the JV1973 thread.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Le breton
Race horses' performances, as far as I know are not any faster now than they were 50 years ago.
How about humans? How about cyclists? How about lab equipment for VO2 measurement?
Anyway, over the last couple of weeks, in my spare time, I started a long-term project : determine the W/kg for some racers of the past.
I started with arguably the most outstanding climbing performance of the past 50+ years : Bahamontes' win in the Puy-de-Dôme TT for the 15th stage of the 1959 TdF on July 10th.

1. Federico Bahamontes en 36'15"
2. Gaul à 1'26"
3. Anglade à 3'00"
4. Rivière à 3'37"
5. Anquetil à 3'41"
6. Brankart à 3'59"
7. Saint à 4'01"
8. Huot à 4'17"
9. Mahé à 4'35"
10. Adriaenssens à 4'40"

What is striking is the huge time gap between BAHA and the likes of Gaul, Rivière or Anquetil. 10% faster than the latter!!!

I had to track down the exact course of the race but was lucky to enlist the help of Bernard Piguet - he won Paris-Brest-Paris in 1979 and 1983 - who has lived nearby for many years and has timed himself and others on that climb. Google map was a help, my memories of the place also.
Anyway, this is what I gathered :

Start at 455 meters (+/- a couple of meters) Rue canrobert, Intersection D942.

Finish of course at 1415 m after a little less than 100m of flat road.

Weight : Baha 65 kg
Bike + the rest : I guessed 12 kg
This being just outside "Michelin city" I have to assume that the road in 1959 was already very smooth, unlike Ventoux.
I took Crr = 0,0045

According to weather archives it was a very hot day. For the air density I took 1.09 at the bottom and 0.97 at the top ( Historic note : this is the place where Blaise Pascal showed that the air pressure goes down with altitude).

Near the start there is a short flattish section, but I figured it was short enough to be lumped with the rest of the first 4 kms.

CdA ----If you look at old ina.fr films of Baha you can see that he was almost sitting straight up on his bike.
I took 0.375 m^2 for the climbing sections and 0.34 m^2 for the flatter mid-section.
3 sectors
1) 0 - 4 km D+ = 310m air= 1,06 CdA = 0.375 m^2

2) 4 - 7,5 km D+ = 105 m air = 1,04 CdA = 0,34

3) 7,5 -12,4 km D+ = 545 m air = 1,0 CdA 0 = 0.375

I excluded the last 80 meters or so and reduced his time to 36'05
I also accounted for the start from 0 speed by reducing his time to 35'55" for the calculation.

With these data you get an SRM-like power output of 413 watts, ie 6.35 watts/kg (including a 2.5% transmission loss)

To estimate his VO2 I took 1 litre O2 <==> 78 watts which gives us 81,5 ml/mn.kg.

Now, what about VO2 max? If he was at 90-92% of his max, that would have been 88-90 ml/mn.kg.

Reminder : with 0-days of cycling 68-69 kg Boardman in 1996 did 442 (Keen) watts for 1 hour, ie 6.4-6.5 watts/kg.

I had just about finished my calculations when I read in "Pouvez-vous gagner le Tour" ( Polar - authors Portoleau and Vayer, page 47) that they had totally independently calculated a power output of 407 watts for Baha!

How about the wind?
It so happens that over the last 4.1 kms (4.2 - 0.1) from the toll house at 927 m to the summit, the roads circles around the mountain, and the gradient is a nearly constant 12%.

The split times at that 8.3 km mark was 19'42"
which means that over the last 4.1 km of climbing Baha needed 36'15" (-10sec) - 19'42 = 16'23" ( I exclude the last ~80 m. of flat road).

A calculation of the corresponding power output gives me 413 watts for that last section where the wind could not be a real factor. On that section the power exerted against the air amount only to about 3.5%! So it's really hard to be very wrong.

I insist on this as some forumers like Python from the height of his expertise in the manufacture of power meters look with utter contempt at calculations such as mine.

Doing the same 10 sec subtraction for the last 80 meters, the times needed for the top racers over that 4.1 km section were

Baha 16 : 23

Gaul + 59 sec
Anglade + 2 : 10
Rivière + 2 : 02
Anquetil + 2 : 21

Again excluding the last 80 m. or so, the total energy expenditure for Bahamontes was 898 kJ.

Out the 413 watts,
359 were against gravity, 21 watts account for the road and 33 for the air ( with the 2.5% transmission losses included each time)

You have enough info to estimate the errors on your own.
I gave you plenty of information to destroy my argumentation if you think i am full of ***.

Finally what about VAM?
section 1 at 413 watts over 7.75% slope 1640 m/h
section 2 ..........................3% incline 1035 m/h
section 3 ..........................11.1% slope 1780 m/h

(Note that last section includes 800meters before toll house).

A possibility for error that I can't exclude concerns the last 4.1 km : I don't know if the split time was measured exactly at the toll house or a short distance from it.

Anyway, I have done similar calculations for the Ventoux assuming no wind and got about 6.6 watts/kg for Vaughters which of course means :

1) that I would be extremely interested Jonathan in reading what your own measure /estimate is

2) that on EPO Bahamontes with the shape he was in on July 10th 1959 would have shattered Iban Mayo.
-------------------------------
JV's comment
THIS IS FASCINATING. Thanks.

I didn't have an SRM on for Ventoux, but I would say 6.6 would be about right, perhaps a bit low, as Ventoux tends to be windy and the cx might be a bit higher than on other climbs. Also, I had been testing on 15-20 min climbs in more the 6.8 region, prior to race. Mayo was on a newly paved road and an oddly zero wind day. I know, as I was there for OLN to interview Mayo (Phil and Paul don't speak Spanish, oddly enough)..

That's not to say Mayo wouldn't have beaten me, but maybe by a bit less!

But 6.35 vs 6.7 leaves us with a .35 difference or around 5-6%... Which would make sense as my natural hct at this time of year would be 48%. For Ventoux it was doped to 52%. So, an 8% gain in hb mass. This would lead to a 4-6% increase in power at FTP, considering the high density of the blood already (as to say 38% to 42% would lead to a slightly more linear relationship gain, as O2 delivery efficiency is greater, per red cell, in a less crowded blood stream)

This is a great example of why I do rely on numbers to give me an indication of whether doping is happening and whether its effective, more than I rely on rumors etc etc. The rumors can sometimes prove to be correct on IF doping is happening, but whether it's method is effective is another story.

Clearly EPO in 1999 was effective.



JV
One can question some data sources, like exact weight of a ride in 1959, like of truly accurate timing...

However, even a low end estimate confirms the plausibility of 6.5 w/kg today.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Le breton said:
Since you don't have a closed mind you might be interested in this exchange from the JV1973 thread.
<snipped for brevity>

So an undoped Bahamontes apparently maintained 6.35 W/kg for ~36 min, whereas an undoped Vaughters could apparently maintain ~6.5 W/kg for 15-20 min in training. To that we might add an undoped Obree's power of ~6.1 W/kg for 1 h and an undoped* Boardman's power of 6.4 W/kg for 1 h. We also have an undoped** Merckx's power of 6.2 W/kg for 1 h (on an ergometer). Now, precisely where is that doping line again?

*Recognizing, of course, the recent thread in which this was questioned.

**Yes, I am aware that Merckx tested positive during his career...but EPO wasn't available in 1975, and it seems unlikely that he would have relied on blood doping to prepare for a lab test.
 
Jul 23, 2009
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Turner29 said:
If you followed the post, you would have noted that I stated the conditions quiet clearly.

Again, on the assumption that Merckx' 6.2 w/kg for one hour in a 1975 lab test is accurate, 6.5 w/kg for an hour is quite plausible. Even if Merckx' test was only 30 minutes, 6.5 w/kg today in race conditions is plausible.
So it's actually non other than Merckx, once in a century cyclist in lab conditions doing 6.2 W/kg for 1 hour, fully rested. This is example you are basing your assumptions on? This proves that 6.5 W/kg is quite possible after X amount of racing days on a GT?

Few words about mutation and evolution. Horse racing is much more popular 'sport' than cycling, furthermore thoroughbreds are being carefully selected, bred considering their racing qualities(often bred in deep incest to preserve and enhance desired traits), groomed and trained. And yet, all the records in classics are held by one horse from the 1973. That's 40 years. There is no way in the next 100 years that clean cyclists will be able to match EPO era performances unless you start breeding them in deep incest. And even then I wouldn't hold my breath.
 
Jul 12, 2012
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Regarding race horses not being any faster today that 50 years ago, I checked the winning time for the "Test of Champions" -- the Belmont Stakes.

The 1931 winning time was faster than the last 4 Belmont Stakes.

Keep in mind, however, that horses have been doped forever, hence the expression "**** like a race horse."

In addition, selective breeding might actually limit the possibility of outliers. Thus, while generating consistent champions, limits the possibility of outlier performances. Certainly, race results seems to confirm this.

On this theory, Secretariat's 2:24.00 for the 1.5 miles represents a true outlier performance and one that may take another 50 years or more to break.
 
Jul 12, 2012
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zastomito said:
So it's actually non other than Merckx, once in a century cyclist in lab conditions doing 6.2 W/kg for 1 hour, fully rested. This is example you are basing your assumptions on? This proves that 6.5 W/kg is quite possible after X amount of racing days on a GT?

Few words about mutation and evolution. Horse racing is much more popular 'sport' than cycling, furthermore thoroughbreds are being carefully selected, bred considering their racing qualities(often bred in deep incest to preserve and enhance desired traits), groomed and trained. And yet, all the records in classics are held by one horse from the 1973. That's 40 years. There is no way in the next 100 years that clean cyclists will be able to match EPO era performances unless you start breeding them in deep incest. And even then I wouldn't hold my breath.
Merckx is not a once in a century cyclist in terms of FTP. As Dr. C noted, Graham Obree, an amateur, matched that number. So did Boardman and Sosenka...

In addition, I don't know many who perform better in a lab than in a race, even a stage race. Thus, Merckx' number might even be a bit higher under race conditions.

More important, you completely missed the point of that discussion, which was about the relative paucity of ergometer data prior to the 1990s simply to form performance baseline.

Your genetics and breeding rational is incorrect, see my follow-up post on race horses.
 
Turner29 said:
For the nth time, I never said the Froome is clean and you should keep to topic -- climbing power estimates. All I am saying, is that 6.5 w/kg, even for an hour, is plausible.

Another issue that without knowing rider weight and frontal area, wind direction, barometric pressure, temperature, tire rolling resistance, power output is merely speculation and not accurate enough to condemn any rider.
Hence, why his power meter data has been requested continually to be released like so many other riders are willing to do.

But, none of the "top" riders seem willing to do that for some inexplicable reason. Sky's boss had some stupid justification about how people don't know how to interpret PM data...OK. Well, then just let the experts interpret it then, but still release it.

Then, we won't need to know all that other stuff, because assuming the PM is calibrated and working properly, it will tell all.
 
Jul 12, 2012
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zigmeister said:
Hence, why his power meter data has been requested continually to be released like so many other riders are willing to do.

But, none of the "top" riders seem willing to do that for some inexplicable reason. Sky's boss had some stupid justification about how people don't know how to interpret PM data...OK. Well, then just let the experts interpret it then, but still release it.

Then, we won't need to know all that other stuff, because assuming the PM is calibrated and working properly, it will tell all.
The reason should be obvious. Without an accepted dope-free baseline, the data is pointless.

I think 6.5 w/kg is plausible. So do some other here, including somebody fairly well learned in the subject. Others do not.

Let's do the verse. I challenge anyone here to prove that 6.5 w/kg is not possible without doping.

Again, keep in mind that prior to last night, I was in that camp. Now, I am not.
 
Jul 23, 2009
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Turner29 said:
Regarding race horses not being any faster today that 50 years ago, I checked the winning time for the "Test of Champions" -- the Belmont Stakes.

The 1931 winning time was faster than the last 4 Belmont Stakes.

Keep in mind, however, that horses have been doped forever, hence the expression "**** like a race horse."

In addition, selective breeding might actually limit the possibility of outliers. Thus, while generating consistent champions, limits the possibility of outlier performances. Certainly, race results seems to confirm this.

On this theory, Secretariat's 2:24.00 for the 1.5 miles represents a true outlier performance and one that may take another 50 years or more to break.
That is why I was talking about classics. Seeing how successful horse covers 40+ mares a year in a few years you get pretty good idea if he was doped to some insane degree or not through his offspring.

I cannot agree with you when it comes to selective breeding. I breed racing pigeons and have been meddling with it for 15 years. It's quite easy to establish two strains of pigeons with different qualities which when bred within the strain are dominantly passed on. When you cross those two strains you get hybrids in fairly good percentage that exceed parents in both qualities but are unable to pass those qualities along. Namely, they are used only for racing. In pigeon racing they are called extremes (or outliers).

Secretariat was actually not a hybrid, he was not even an outcross breeding. He was simply freak of nature who quite naturally failed to produce equally good horse. Though he is sometimes considered as the greatest brood mare sire ever.
 
jens_attacks said:
speaking of ventoux, i uploaded some stuff on the blog

http://climbing-records.blogspot.ro/2013/07/speed-glory-top-50-fastest-rides-on.html

and if i'm lucky enough to catch Le Breton here....what do you know about Jean Francois Bernard's time on Ventoux from Bedoin in that 1987 ITT?
i've read somewhere about 57:24 which i think is wrong and close to impossible for the last 21.5 kms

from the intermediates heard on the live broadcast, jeff managed 52:18 from sainte-colombe to the top . he clocked 27:26 on that intermediate point

that would mean if we take 57:24 as real that he raced the first 3.8 kms from bedoin in 5 minutes at 45.60 km/h lol....not even with a tornado on your tail you can do that
i approximated that he did that in around 8 minutes, even probably it was more
so around 1:00:30-1:01:00 for the last 21.5 kms??

so what do you think?faster than charly gaul for sure?
According to L'Equipe (I kept it, have it next room), his time between intermediate 1 in Bédoin and the top was 58:08.

However I don't know if their timing spot in Bédoin was exactly where the TT started in 1999 and 2004 (D.L.). Bédoin is pretty small, the difference wouldn't be huge. I assume he lost 15" changing bike later on.
 
Turner29 said:
By the way, when Landis was out on the road promoting his defense, I stood up in the forum and directly, but politely, pointed out my concerns regarding his "defense" on a point-by-point scientific basis...

I am not here defending anyone. For the record, prior to last night and today's discussion, I was actually in the camp that anything over 6.0 w/kg was a sure sign of doping. Now I am not.
After 5 hours of racing in the mountain or in the heat 6.0 W/kg is quite possibly beyond the limit.
 
Jul 23, 2009
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Turner29 said:
More important, you completely missed the point of that discussion, which was about the relative paucity of ergometer data prior to the 1990s simply to form performance baseline.
So your point is not that 6.5 W/kg is doable in real time racing but that ergometer data is scarce pre 1990? Point taken and agreed.

Turner29 said:
I think 6.5 w/kg is plausible. So do some other here, including somebody fairly well learned in the subject. Others do not.
So if we drew line at 6.1 W/kg why you choose 6.5 W/kg? Why not go 8 or even 10?
 
Le breton said:
According to L'Equipe (I kept it, have it next room), his time between intermediate 1 in Bédoin and the top was 58:08.

However I don't know if their timing spot in Bédoin was exactly where the TT started in 1999 and 2004 (D.L.). Bédoin is pretty small, the difference wouldn't be huge. I assume he lost 15" changing bike later on.
thanks for the answer :)
 
Jul 12, 2012
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Le breton said:
After 5 hours of racing in the mountain or in the heat 6.0 W/kg is quite possibly beyond the limit.
And your evidence? JV1973 claims such is possible, based upon his own performance on Mt. Ventoux.
 
Jul 12, 2012
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Le breton said:
Undoubtedly, specially considering that at best he just had a fan to try and stay cool.

1 hour on a test bike in a lab seems like torture to me.
My very point.
 
Jul 12, 2012
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zastomito said:
So your point is not that 6.5 W/kg is doable in real time racing but that ergometer data is scarce pre 1990? Point taken and agreed.


So if we drew line at 6.1 W/kg why you choose 6.5 W/kg? Why not go 8 or even 10?
Because there is no body of data where to draw the line, plain and simple.

And what do you consider clean vs. doped? Merckx doped, Fignon doped, Moser doped... No EPO but they were not clean.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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acoggan said:
Okay, how 'bout 6.0? 5.9? Where do you draw the "doping line", and what is your physiological/scientific rationale for where you draw it?
I believe its right around there, yes. Is it possible that one or two humans can get into the low 6's "clean" (with massive team support, perfect lifestyle that almost nobody realizes)? Maybe, but I dont believe that 30-40 guys on one Grand Tour should be able to hit those numbers day in day out. :)


acoggan said:
:confused:

The cycle ergometer was invented in the late 1880s, and VO2max was first measured/recognized starting in the 1920s. IOW, there are plenty of data from before the widespread use of blood doping/the invention of EPO. For example, Merckx reportedly averaged 6.2 W/kg during a 1 h ergometer test in 1975: http://forum.cyclingnews.com/showthread.php?t=8170



(OTOH, most would hold up Graham Obree as an example of a clean rider, and his FTP was ~6.1 W/kg.)
Eddy was not a clean rider, maybe Obree was....perhaps. But I've not seen any power data from Obree, or proof that he could do 6.1 w/kg for his hour. He was fast, but I could go fast too in his positions. :D
 
acoggan said:
<snipped for brevity>

So an undoped Bahamontes apparently maintained 6.35 W/kg for ~36 min, whereas an undoped Vaughters could apparently maintain ~6.5 W/kg for 15-20 min in training. To that we might add an undoped Obree's power of ~6.1 W/kg for 1 h and an undoped* Boardman's power of 6.4 W/kg for 1 h. We also have an undoped** Merckx's power of 6.2 W/kg for 1 h (on an ergometer). Now, precisely where is that doping line again?

*Recognizing, of course, the recent thread in which this was questioned.

**Yes, I am aware that Merckx tested positive during his career...but EPO wasn't available in 1975, and it seems unlikely that he would have relied on blood doping to prepare for a lab test.
Using Obree and Boardman attempting hour records on indoor tracks with no wind resistance and specialised equipment which both had planned for is hardly comparable to riding a climb after a 5 hour + mountainous stage after a week of racing, more like apples and oranges.

Likewise with Vaughters, was that after a 5 hour effort or just going flat out for 15-20 minutes. What were the circumstances??

Merckx and Bahomantes I would have serious issues with accuracy etc.
 

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