Now and Then

TimKendall

Speeding Up
Dec 28, 2009
129
0
36
Nagoya
#1
I'm just thinking back to the 1980, and the bike that I used to ride.
It was pretty good. A Peugeot 753 Frame, Suntour Superb Groupset, Mavic GEL280 rimes with Campy Super Record Hubs, Chainset was a 42/53, and I rode a 12-18 block for TT, and a 12-21 for RR.
In comparison, I now ride a fairly nice bike too.. GIANT TCR Advanced SL1 Frame, Dura ace Groupset, RITCHEY WCS Apex (38mm) Wheels...

So, my point is..... are cyclists on the whole really that much quicker than they were during the 80s?

I took a 25 year break from the sport, so there was no transition. It was just the first bike to the second bike, and nothing between
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#2
Good question - In effect yes we are faster now, my current team bike in comparison to my first road bike, A Concorde that will have all the vintage lovers drowling is more than half the weight and therefore requires less energy to get it up and over the lumps.

However as most poeple are on the same type of machines now and then the playing field in regards to hardware is a level playing field and always has been. (If you can afford it or good enough to be given it)

Also with the advancement in sport science and training methods the average Fred is much quicker.

I had a look at my old teams Evening 10 TT results and there is a staggering difference in the times between now and then.

Even back then you could see how hardware technology gave those that had it an edge. I remember getting dropped on a climb by an old team mate who had STi shifters, he would for you to shift on the down tube and as soon as he saw your hand leave the bars he would attack, it gave such an advantage that you had to upgrade, same as the LOOK clipless pedals.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#3
Definitely faster now. Especially at the amateur levels. I predate you a bit, but similarly off the bike a long time, then time warped. Oh if we only had then, what we do now. Mainly the biometrics, training and nutrition. Not sure about you, but all we had was CONTI and my girlfriend was a Phd in an emerging science called 'kinesiology'. I was a lot stronger then ... But I can actually ride faster now! (Excepting the multiple hill primes and waterboy work) But don't you bigger guys have a lot better gear to actually use the power now? I mean, even my 'classics ready' Columbus SL is a Mr Toads Wild Ride compared to ANY China Carbon I've been on, not even talking a real brando like my Neil Pryde or Bridgestone RL8

For me the case in point was doing Alpe d Huez in 60min. Barely 15min slower than my last time more tha 25yrs ago. And this time I was almost 10kg heavier! So, where's the bike in all this? My current platform is just that much better. I'm not losing tons of energy into mushing a frame up a hill.
 

TimKendall

Speeding Up
Dec 28, 2009
129
0
36
Nagoya
#4
So the.... 20:17 for 10 miles TT, and the 53:12 for 25 miles TT, would be what is in today's currency? I didn't win with either of these times, but was close.... haha
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#5
Platinum? anyone from 'back then'knows to break the hour in a 25er is the hard man!

[QUOTE=TimKendall;59357]So the.... 20:17 for 10 miles TT, and the 53:12 for 25 miles TT, would be what is in today's currency? I didn't win with either of these times, but was close.... haha[/QUOTE]
 

TimKendall

Speeding Up
Dec 28, 2009
129
0
36
Nagoya
#6
Not that unusal for that time.
The winner on the day was C. Boardman with a 50:??. I never rode over the hour during that year... though most were 57 or 58 rides.
The current record holder is David McCann with a 45:54. Previous to that was Boady with a 45:57.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
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103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#7
Interesting ... http://www.cyclingtimetrials.org.uk...&tabid=151&gv553__gvff0=M25_TT&gv553__gvfl0=0

Though, I think riders with names like 'Boardman' , 'Obree' , 'McCann' are hardly usual. Only a handful of TCC'ers could break an hour. I don't think the actual power levels have varied much in the last 25yrs - but the technology has. And so has the training. And especially aerodynamics of modern wheels are much better - and this really counts on steady state TT type riding. for hilly, stage riding, maybe not as much difference due to tech - except as James noted, the modern STI / ramped geartrain is far superior and allows much more gear optimization during the ride.
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#8
There is a you tube video out there of a Pro doing a TT on a 80's top line bike. He then does it on a modern day top of the line bike and blows the time out of the water.

Power levels have improved as well - it goes hand in hand with training.