How to Race if You're Not a Sprinter - Race Analysis

We just published a new race analysis video. This time it’s Pete’s cameras from the Cal Aggie P/1/2/3 race.

Race Analysis

Full Race


Great stuff! I love these even though I don’t race road :rofl:

It’s just a matter of time until you do!

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WOW. That was a close one right at the start there… I came unclipped once, went down at 30 and fortunately didn’t take anyone out with me. Just a solo ambulance ride and about four weeks in bandages. Thanks for bringing back THOSE memories, @Nate_Pearson. :wink:

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That was one of our employee’s brother! He’s a pro-MTBer and this is his first year of road. He was in MTB shoes/cleats. :exploding_head:


echoing @stevemz, crits aren’t for me, but I love watching these. I can’t wait to be an pit crit coach!

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Yikes! Mine was a Speedplay cleat that was bound on the back side (unbeknownst to me) and didn’t seat properly in the back of the pedal. When I stood to sprint at 30mph, toe pointed down and cleat disengaged in the front, back wasn’t engaged, foot went straight into the ground and down I went. Fortunately I was building into a “sprinter’s gap” and shooting out of the draft outside of the group so I was clear of everyone else.

While I love Speedplay’s pedals, I ride Keos/Garmins now. :slight_smile:

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Oh man, I was just thinking about switching back to SPD-R pedals (I’m on speedplay now). I think you just made up my mind!


Time for SPD-R with zero float!
We’re gonna make you into a sprinter! Lol

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I love the Ultegra SPD-SL pedals with the minimal float cleats. They feel rock solid.

Those are the red cleats, right? Why does zero float make you a better sprinter? I’d be afraid that I’d be more likely to pull a cleat.

I just took the cover off my speed plays, then thought that they MIGHT be more aero, and put the cover back on…

It was kind of a fluke and mostly my fault for not making sure the cleats were properly lubricated and functioning properly prior to that particular ride. Still, while I paid attention to that kind of thing pretty well over the years, it’s tough to go back to Speedplays with any confidence with that kind of “what if?” on my mind.

I would stay away from the Red 0* float. You need to have them dialed in pretty close to perfect to avoid knee issues, IMHO. Float is not a watt stealing monster if you are even reasonably controlled.

If you want to run reduced float, I would suggest the blue. See the comparison between yellow and blue.


From what I heard. (Might be bro science.)

That your cleat is adjusted in the most optimal positions, so with some float your feet can slips out of optimal angle in and out during a sprint due to high force. Kinda like the wobbly sprint analogy!

Also sprinter like Mark Cav like to have the SPD adjusted to be as tight as possible so it stay put as much as possible for feet positioning and also lessen the possibility of cleat slippage.

From what I see in track sprinting this theory hold… Not only they have cleats on, they uses strap to tighten their shoes to their positions as tight as possible. I think there’s a reason behind it other than cleat slippage.

Another point is… You can clearly see sprinter tighten their boa dials before the last laps or 5km to go before the sprints this ensure the feet stays in one place.

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Yeah zero float is definitely not for everyone… Gotta try it before you knock it though!

Just like slamming the stem ha ha ha

I used to wear the blue one, now I’m on zero float for my garmin pedals.
Even with zero I still feel I can wiggle my feet slightly… And I don’t like it! Lol I want even less wiggle ha ha ha

But really pay attention how you pedal though… If youre putting out tempo or less it’s much different than v02 and sprinting.
The more power I put out the more my ankle angled slightly outward, and the more I push with the outer part of my front foot.

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If your release tension is set properly I don’t see how float would cause this to happen

Track is a bit different since its fixed gear and the consequence of a slipped pedal are far greater than on the road. The wattage/torque delta is also wayyy higher for track riders.

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I don’t race either, but I loved the videos. If only we could have something similar in professional cycling… It is ould actually be watchable! Haha.

Though I watch it anyway


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Loved this video! And I’m super jealous that Pete can start in the back like that so nonchalantly! My experience in the back has left me sucking wind to try to catch the pack that took off like lightning. Excellent insight as to how he approached this race!

And some super sweet cornering!