Pacing Strategy for 10 Lap Race


I have my first ever non-virtual race coming up :slight_smile:

It’s about 80km long with 10 laps on a hilly course. One Segment is quite hard. About 700m long @8% ascent. Should be around or a bit over 2 Minutes, so i’m focusing on 2 minute over-under intervals in my recent training.

I dont know really how to pace such a race. Of course it’s all about experience, but unfortunately i dont have any.

My FTP is around 4 to 4,2 W/kg. Staying in the middle of a pack seems obviously wise, but hammering at Threshold just too keep up with the front seems quite stupid. On your opinion, whats a good value to keep speed over 2 hours with intervals in between? SweetSpot? Tempo? And then attacking the hill on VO2max each lap?

Advice would be nice :slight_smile:

Thank you

IF this is a mass start event, I think you are overthinking it with regards to pacing. I would expect it to be @ or regularly above threshold for the first lap or so, it should calm down once the sting has been taken out of everyone’s tail.

You will be well into VO2/MAP power range up that climb, I would suggest moving up to the front 10-20 wheels before the climb starts, then if you need to you can let people come around you as you climb it (sag climbing). If you are not one of the stronger riders and you start at the back on the climb you will likely be dropped.

It might be ‘harder’ work to stay near the front, but if it’s a road race with 90deg corners then being at the back is really hard work as you get the concertina effect going into these and end up having to sprint to stay on the further back you are the worse it gets.

Have fun and stay safe


In a race pace = strategy. I’m not a climber so I’m usually gone by lap 4 or so in a race like this take this for what it’s worth. If I was doing that race my only goal would be to get to the top of the climbs still in contact with the group. So I’d want to use as little energy as possible on the flats while trying to be near the front of the pack at the start of the climbs so I had room to drift back.

If you are a climber, hammer the climbs to make everyone else suffer. If you’re an all rounder, eventually youlll want to hammer the flats to make the climbers suffer before they get to the climb

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This is good advice. In a mass start road race you’re racing the other riders, not the clock.

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You mentioned pack so am assuming it’s a road race? In which case the simple answer is whatever’s necessary to not get dropped!

If it’s your first race I wouldn’t worry too much about attacking that climb for the first few laps. Just settle in, try to find a spot in the pack where you’re in the draft but not too far back, observe how people are riding and try to avoid going deeper than necessary to respond to accelerations. There’s never a shortage of people willing to attack in the first few laps! That also gives you time to try and identify other riders who look strong and would be good to try and follow if you see them moving up or attacking. Also worth pointing out that the pace in the first few laps is normally the hardest, so if you’re way over threshold and starting to think it’s not sustainable don’t worry, there will be others feeling the same and it most likely will calm down at some point.

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Well, thats yery helpful and insightful! Thank you all!

btw, this is the lap: Schleizer Dreieck GCC 2018 | Strava Ride Segment in Schleiz, Thüringen, Germany