Tactics for flat windy race

In a non technical, flat race, with three corners and none that you need to brake on. A 15mph head on the start finish straight and a field of 30 riders, how would you go about winning? The course runs anti clockwise and the arrows represent the wind.

FYI im a slightly heavier puncy rider, with maybe a 1100w sprint by the end of the race but usually rely on my 1 min power 659w for a long attack at the end. I tried my best with the route picture.

With a head/tail wind here it’s difficult to get away from the bunch, especially if you’re not bringing team mates to the race with you. I am also not sure that that kind of power is going to get you clear from a big bunch a minute before the end, especially as it would mean attacking with a tail wind. Usually riders are going about 60kph into that bottom bend with a tail wind, so speed difference would be minimal, even with your hefty kick.

I have two suggestions:

Bring or make friends with some other riders. Working together increases your punching power.

Learn who is who. Some riders are worth following, others not. Knowing who you’re racing is a huge part of doing well.

p.s. Come and say hello. We’re in pink and black.

All valid points, my thoughts are the same. Last week was different with a crosswind on the main straight but the headwind almost neautralises the race to an extent. Maybe the top part has potential to split with a small part of crosswind? Only one teammate for me this weekend, so not enough firepower to really have an effect. Pink and black, is that condors?

Would have thought best tactic on a day like that is simply racing very conservatively and saving all your energy for a bunch finish. Do the minimum required to not get dropped and stay on the right side of any splits. Hope that other people burn lots of matches trying stuff. Spend the race practicing finding good lines through that last corner. Generally the wind there is more westerly rather than straight northerly though! Which tends to be more fun as lots of crosswind breaks the bunch up.

It was perfect crosswind weather this Saturday. Go into the straights near the front of the bunch and drive hard out of the bends. The back of the race falls apart.

I’ve never seen the Cat 3 race break up due to wind blowing across the short top section.

That’s us, yes.


The westerly wind was the case last week and it was good fun… the intial forecast does predict a stright headwind this weekend for a change, i have seen it a couple of times before there.

Cool, ill come and say hi. I was in the 3s last week in the Army CU kit.



Your sprint is the same as mine, maybe 50w up, but I’m 70kg. However, your 1 min power is over 100w better, so I’d say that’s your weapon. Whether that’s enough to get and stay away will depend on the field and the wind. Cornering looks important on that course, too.

Its actually an old airfield and the corners are super wide. All apart from one of them, you can literally take at full speed. I think the key part will be positioning in the bunch for the finish and trying to not get boxed in.

If you are going to rely on your 1 min power, my advice would be to wait until the last lap and go hard right after the finish line. Create a gap in the headwind / crosswind areas that makes others hesitate a second and look for others to close the gap.

Then you need to drill it all out on the tailwind second, which will help negate the benefits of a pack and then hang on for the final push to the finish.

But if you don’t get a gap right away, you gotta sit up immediately so you can still have something for the sprint. Sprinting into a headwind means waiting for the last second and don’t lead it out.

I would think you need to contest the sprint with the pack. Almost no chance of getting away unless the pack just sits up or hesitates or you get into a breakaway earlier. Your long range attack just sounds like you would be the designated leadout man and come into a mid pack finish. Some races just cant be won!

The circuit is about 1.7 miles, lap is 3.5 minutes or more when it’s windy. So going at the bell is a real long shot. Maaaaybe if everybody is playing silly games you could attack on the straight with the tailwind, get a gap before the corner, and then the benefit of being able to pick your line and take that corner full gas might be just enough to hang on to the finish. Probably about a minute as well! Relies on nobody wanting to drive the bunch in the tailwind though.

Yeah, just to clarify, those are likely his best tactics if he wants to use his one minute power as his best option. I didn’t say it was the “best” tactic. :crazy_face:

If you go in the tailwind, others will go with you….you need to create a gap in the headwind section when others won’t want to chase and might hesitate. Best case scenario you get a “gambler’s prime” at two laps to go…attack through the prime sprinters on the bell lap and see if you can stick it. But you don’t often get one of those anymore.

In the handful of windy races I did a few years ago, it was easy to move up and sit in on the headwind sections, and it was the tailwind sections that blew things up. The advantage of being in the wheels is markedly reduced in a roaring tailwind.

I’d be useless in the conditions, but if you didn’t want to take it to a late sprint, I’d say attack into the penultimate corner and drive it at least until the last corner. It should be properly strung out by there, with gaps all over the place.

Really I think it’s one of those ‘it depends’.

If no-one is really drilling it, and a few of the ‘main’ riders spend 5-10 seconds looking at each other, then someone really going all-in with a minute to go could work, especially with the corner.

On the other hand, if the race is going hard, and anyone who goes is marked, then it’s going to come down to a sprint and positioning.

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2018 right? Think that was my first race.

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As a 60kg whippet I am not a fan of Dalton. :joy: Good training and good to push myself but much prefer a technical Crit. Would say that a solid final corner can create gaps, especially when you’re entering with 50kmh thanks to the last lap surges, so working on line there will help a late attack.


I won a race similar to this course (Long, open corners, windy). I attacked at 1 to go into the wind after the pack slowed to like 18 mph and no one wanted to chase. After a hard 20-30 second effort with not much of a response I just drilled it as hard as I could for the 3 minutes or so. On the tailwind area, no one is making up any ground since you will be probably close to spun out. Then it’s just hanging on into the wind again on the final stretch.

Definitely depends on the group. This was cat 4 in US so it was very uncoordinated.