Sprinter power output

I’ve not really been a fan of Velon’s somewhat gimmicky live statistics, but one area where they are interesting is in the sprints. I’ve always wondered what kind of power top sprinters put out at the end of a stage.

Today’s Giro stage provides a set of examples. In the last 280 meters the top four finishers produced the following numbers:

RACE DATA: Sam Bennett (BORA-hansgrohe), first place:
Final 280m
- Time: 16"
- Speed: 67.2km/h
- Top speed: 71.2km/h
- Cadence: 110rpm
- Power: 1090W
- Max power: 1480W

Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors), second place:
- Time: 17"
- Speed: 66.3km/h
- Top speed: 69.8km/h
- Cadence: 111rpm
- Power: 1075W
- Max power: 1343W

Niccolò Bonifazio (Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team), third place:
- Time: 18"
- Speed: 65.3km/h
- Top speed: 69.0km/h
- Cadence: 114rpm
- Power: 1029W
- Max power: 1382W

Sacha Modolo (EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale), fourth place

- Time: 18’’
- Speed: 64.1km/h
- Top speed: 66.2km/h
- Cadence: 111rpm
- Power: 1129W
- Max power: 1341W

So all four were sustaining over 1000 watts. Modolo, who led out, unsurprisingly had to sustain the highest power and had relatively little jump to his max power (ie there was less of a kick in his sprint). Perhaps more surprisingly, there was quite a big difference between Bennett’s max power and that of Viviani (137 watts).

Now one thing to take into account is that both Bennett and, to a lesser extent, Viviani are among the lighter top sprinters and both have quite aero positions. Presumably someone like Greipel has to be putting out monstrous power numbers to get the same acceleration?

Have Velon done many of these full sprint breakdowns? It strikes me that it would be interesting to compare the average numbers of sprint winners from year to year. Also to see the difference between the numbers the same sprinter puts out to win an early season race and a GT stage. Or to see exactly how much harder is to win on the Champs Elysee than it is to win a random Vuelta sprint. I suspect that the best way to do that would be to compare the numbers for races with the same winner, whose weight and position will be more or less the same.

I really want to see these numbers for the “big lump” sprinters like Kittel and Greipel as well as these ones for relatively “svelte” guys like Viviani and Bennett.

Even within this race there’s a lot to learn from the sprint stats. Compare the above with stage 3. On that stage there was a slightly bigger max power gap in Bennett’s favour over Viviani (1594w v 1443w), but Viviani won comfortably. Neither of these guys should be going early.
ngent41 said:

theres an article from last year about velon's sprint numbers. It has info on greipel in there. Theres no info on kittel there but I recall seeing another article somewhere last year that put his max power around 1900 watts
I think the most revealing fact in that article is that the day where they measured the highest peak power numbers of anyone, Greipel finished 8th.

Which probably comes back to ZL’s query about the power required to win on the Champs be early season. And it’s probably not that different between the 2, but the positioning fight would be that much tougher.
Putting out such power in a flat sprint at a very high speed, when the inertial load on the pedals is small compared to say an uphill drag, and after a proper race, is a skillset of its own.
Velon’s refusal to put up numbers consistently measuring the same thing is already starting to drive me nuts. Today they put up numbers from the Tour de Suisse but not from Sagan or Gaviria. Instead they gave us Matthews sprint and, infuriatingly, they provided an average power for the last 23 seconds rather than the last 18, and didn’t say what distance was covered this time, making comparisons inexact.

Anyway, we get another of the more svelte sprinters rather than some of the big brutes. Like Modolo in the first example, he led out and his max power is actually very similar. His sustained power was markedly lower, but it’s hard to know how significant that is as it’s at least partly about the data covering a longer period (23 rather than 18 seconds).


- Time: 23”
- Speed: 62.1km/h
- Top speed: 67.5km/h
- Cadence: 110rpm
- Power: 900W
- Max power: 1360W

At least we should get a lot of information during the Tour. Most of the big guns will be there and presumably Velon will give numbers from every stage.
I was down the shops yesterday avro to buy
some tea and a couple of other items and as
I was walking out an Olympic champ sprinter
was walking in (through the "out" door). Why
is it if sprinters can generate so many watts,
they won't use some of their power to walk
the few extra steps and use the proper "in"
entrance door? I guess they believe there is
one set of rules for them and another set for
everybody else. How does the old saying go:
Power corrupts and massive power corrupts
massively. :)
Very true. Sprinters are not lazy/bludgers :) they'd love to help a mate out
except they are either recovering from doing squats and cleans yesterday
or resting up because they have to do them again tomorrow. :rolleyes:
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