Bike and wheel for gravel

Now that for gravel you need to be able to select a suitable bike and tyres other than winning the mountain bike what’s the option. Rode the ruins on a road bike that wouldn’t even freewheel on 3% or 4% where it would easily previously. Overall even on the flat resistance was fairly high compared to previously. So do we stick to the sealed areas unless you have the mountain bike.

Hi @Lindsay_Cripps,

Currently the only bike that has a lower rolling resistance on the dirt/gravel roads is the MTB that has to be earned by getting 9 out of 10 stars on the new Repack Ridge course and you also must finish under 12 minutes, or maybe it is 12:30?

All other bikes and wheels perform the same on the gravel roads, or rather the rolling resistance is the same. I would still assume that a lighter bike would be faster up the hills in the jungle, but not as fast as the MTB.

No you should not have to.

The MTB is the King of the jungle but it is a Sloth on the road. So if you do a race that go to the jungle the MTB will not be able to keep up on the road to the jungle (8km).

If you do a free ride then the choice of bike should not make a difference, going 20km/h or 30km/h or 40km/h is not a big deal in a virtual world. In the end your TSS determine how hard you train and speed or distance has not impact on TSS or average power.

Without better options for gravel suitable bikes I think Zwift has somewhat spoilt the riding experience. What I meant was having to stay on the sealed roads if you want a similar experience and results as previous.


Yes if you are comparing distance and speed then yes, you can stay on the old roads.
Or you can embrace the change and set new targets for time and speed.

It is the same as if your local road introduced a STOP sign on one of your favourite routes or the pavement got really bad and slow or they made new pavement and now it is nice and fast.

At this point I think we all generally understand WHAT is happening on the dirt roads, we just don’t understand WHY Zwift thinks it should be this way. In my experience there is no noticeable difference in the rolling resistance between a paved road and a dirt road, while the folks at Zwift seem to think that riding on a dirt road is like riding through the sand at Koksijde. I’m not saying there is NO difference IRL, just that it is negligible in the grand scheme of things. Even on a free ride I would say this is an issue, if for no reason other than frustration. The new road feel in the jungle is like going out on your road bike with nearly flat tires, which I don’t think anyone really wants to do. It’s just frustrating, and it doesn’t need to be that way. In the end, different road feels for different surfaces isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but the differences should be realistic, and there should be more options than just ‘get the MTB’ (which I will never do) to deal with the different surfaces if the rolling resistance is going to be so dramatic.


I am sure Zwift got their rolling resistance mode from some reputable source.

I did a quick search and found these values. So it all depend on what Zwift used for c on the normal roads. Lets assume the used bicycle tire on asphalt road (0.004) and for the dirt section
bicycle tire on rough paved road (0.008) that is double.

And since F=c*W and weight stay the same then the force to overcome rolling resistance will double.

Couldn’t agree more. Regularly ride for short distances on the road bike on gravel where I am. Only very slightly more resistance. than sealed. In Zwift it’s like riding in sand. Doesn’t free wheel like it did even at 3 to 4% like it did. The worst part is no options other than “Winning” the MB.