What bike to use for training?

My A race is a 24 hr mass start ride. The first several (6 or so) hours of the race are basically a group ride through rolling hills, that has road bike written all over it. But as the day wears on the terrain starts to flatten out and the riding groups shatter to 1’s and 2’s and it remains that way for the rest of the time. So I’d use a TT bike for that. I have both types of bikes available. My question is what bike should I be training on / which bike ftp should I use? Should I use the tt for base and then road for build to prep for the hills? Any tips or insight is appreciated.

I’m a bit confused. Is your plan to swap bikes during the race? Are you sure TT bikes are allowed? They’re typically banned in any kind of mass start event where drafting is allowed, for safety reasons.

Personally I would be going road bike for this kind of event, possibly with clip ons if allowed, just for another position to ride in. In which case train on the road bike and use the road bike FTP. With training and a good position there should be little to no difference in FTP between road and TT anyway. Differences are normally caused by people not training as much in the TT position and/or opting for an aggressively aero position that sacrifices power. You definitely don’t want to be riding a TT position in a 24 hour race if you haven’t trained a lot in it, and equally that duration is not one to sacrifice good ergonomics and power so moving to a less aero and more comfortable position would make sense.

They are definitely allowed, the overall winners are always on them from the start. I agree with you that the road bike is safer in the group. I would like to switch bikes at a checkpoint when things are more broken up and tt’s are safer to ride. I like the steeper seat tube angle of my tt bike when aero to keep my hip angle more open.

If the TT bike is legal train on the TT bike. Use the TT FTP. Race the TT bike.

Stay on the horns in the group. Easy.

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Ah, sounds an unusual event! If you go with the switching plan then I’d train both positions then. Per my other post, would also spend some time trying to get your FTPs in the 2 positions as close as possible. It does seem that the majority of riders put out less power in their TT position, but the people I know who race triathlons or TTs and spend a good amount of time on their TT bike all seem to have FTPs that are identical or very close. Which does suggest to me that any gap is down to insufficient time training the TT position and/or time spent refining the TT position, rather than the TT position being inherently less powerful.

That’s a good bit of insight there. I think I’ll start putting some serious effort into the tt bike now to bridge the ftp gap and then split training time.