Group riding dynamics and effective drafting?

(Mike Swart) #1

How effective is drafting designed to be in Zwift? Right now it appears to have little to no benefit. While riding directly behind another rider, I frequently see that my W/Kg matches their W/Kg. As the number of riders in front of me increases, I do not feel like I need to pedal softer to stay with the group.

The lack of a strong draft really kills “sitting in” the peloton or working with a group of riders in a breakaway.

Can the devs share any insight around this? Is it intentional?

(Noel Nunkovich *USMES*) #2

While I’d be really interested in hearing the “inside scoop” on this from the devs, or whoever, I have to say that this doesn’t match my experience. Drafting behind an AI along the Zwift Island main drag, on the flats between the Orange and Green sprint points for instance, I routinely see a difference of a couple of miles per hour at a typical endurance effort level. Also, last night I was drafting another virtual rider, not an AI, and his w/kg numbers were rather higher than mine during the time I stayed in his draft.

(Mike Swart) #3

Interesting! Maybe I just have not ridden with enough people to experience it.

(Eric Welch) #4

I haven’t been the greatest at drafting. Noel, do you have any tips? Thx!

(Greg Gibson-Haymarket) #5

I find riding in the “3” view - that’s “3” on the keyboard the most realistic since it is directly from the rider’s perspective just like outside. I think it makes drafting easier.

I do feel/see some effect when drafting, in fact, when an rider passes me and my rider falls in behind, I hear an audible change in the sound as my wheels pick up speed.


(Noel Nunkovich *USMES*) #6

@Eric - I’m not sure if I have any useful tips or not. Honestly, once I started running Zwift on a machine with high frame rates drafting became pretty easy On the slower machine I used originally it was pretty much impossible as the game play just wasn’t smooth enough. Other than that, I find view 1 to be the easiest to draft in, namely because I can use “my” rider as a gauge of distance. Also, just learning to anticipate. Just like on the road you have to back off the power before you think you need to so as to avoid overshooting. That’s about all I’ve got I’m afraid.

(En Latmask) #7

While drafting do have some effect as of now, in my opinion it should be more pronounced. I’d also like to see some kind of visual that shows when you’re in a draft and the falloff of the draft.

(Rands Toberz [TFC] TFC (C)) #8

I agree that that draft should be more pronounced.  I would also like to see a visual that shows when you are in the draft and out of the draft.

Additionally, am I correct that when you are in the draft (on Zwift) the riding avatar stands up a bit on the hoods? or am I imagining things?

(Julynn Washington (WSR)X RO4H) #9

Yes Rands, that is in fact the visual of drafting, when the avatar rides on the hoods; once out of the draft the avatar get into the drops. The drafting has improved greatly over the course of time.

(Diederik Hol) #10

Drafting should definitely be more pronounced to mimick cycling in real life. I experienced no benefit at all in a race this morning. I expected more benefit of drafting going down at higher speeds, but still no significant difference with me taking the lead. Other riders stayed at me wheel though, which left the impression that they did benefit somehow.

Didn’t notice the position change of the avatar. Good to know.