Geeky aero stuff with clip on aerobars

I have an integrated cockpit…I can bolt on aerobars but they are integrated into the drop bars instead of clamped on. Yesterday was a windless day so I did some threshold stuff on a flattish loop. The headunit mount on my handlebars had a little technical failure so I just threw the headunit in a toptube bag and did a couple intervals by feel.

Two intervals of ~20min each. One on the aerobars and one just in the drops.

Aerobars: 169 average HR, 22.5mph
Drops: 170 average HR, 22.5mph

Exactly 20W more during the ‘on the drops’ interval. I thought it was just kind of interesting that RPE and average speed turned out to be almost exact between the two intervals. And that there was normalized power was exactly 20W different between the two.

Actually, I would have guess there would be more advantage to riding on the aero sticks.

There is a lot more to TT bars than just the bar - how close your elbows are, how much you shrug the shoulders to get the head down, flow of air over the helmet, how much you can close off the chest from air contact…had a TT bike fit last October…my position has completely changed…not that I’ve raced it yet! :grin:

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That’s less than I would have guessed, too. What was the difference as a percentage?

You need to repeat it again at 25mph @Brennus thats when the difference is meant to kick in :+1:

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I dunno…20w is nothing to sneeze at. I’d gladly take an extra 20w!!

But it is also worth noting that an aero position on a road bike is far from optimized…most people tend to be up higher on aero bars on a road bike than on a TT bike, so I would expect a larger delta if you were in an optimized position.


That is absolutely, 100% correct. I do hold the KOM on that loop…BUT NOT ON THIS BIKE!!! :rofl: I should go out & do it at 25mph on this bike just to see what it would take.

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Ditto, depending on FTP, we could be talking a 5-10% delta there, for minimal “cost”.

Agreed on clip-ons. Doing a “best” setup can benefit from a more optimized saddle setup. A fixed setup is a compromise in one way or another. Using the Redshift Sports dual position seat post is a great tool that can make a road/tri blended bike about as good as it gets.


Would you take that 20w if it didnt make you any faster or the effort any easier?

Something doesnt quite seem right with this test…

Just to give you a feel the KOM effort was 7W more than the power I held on the sticks yesterday. So a little bit more power but avg speed was 25.5mph. But 40F warmer so that definitely helped.

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Sure…he had to put out 20W more to go the same speed in the drops as he did in the aerobars. Even assuming RPE and HR meant the effort was “the same”, that is still more calories you are burning for the same effort.

And as noted, just slapping aero bars on a road bike usually doesn’t result in an optimized position, so that could explain the smaller RPE…along with the fact that he may not have spent enough time in the position to really adapt to it.

Way too many holes in a one-off test to draw any conclusions, other than the position in the drops required 20w more than the aero bars.

Yup…as long as you have a round seatpost, it is a great option.

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