I know you guys are working on a fix for the fence. For months now. I have a very easy solution for this issue. If the leader of a ride could just hide selected flyers/riders from the group by flagging/selecting in the companion they do not even get kicked, nobody is annoyed anymore and all are happy. And you can stop trying to repair the fence. Regards, Jan
Welcome to the forum
That may open a whole can of worms where leaders will hide people they don’t like or agree with.
Or you can just ignore them. Once they are far of the front you won’t see them and they wont show on the mini map.
I noticed that group rides are marking flyers as DQed on Zwift Power. I wonder if the next step will be to remove their names from ZP?
When it worked, the fence solved the problem just fine.
Agree 100% that the fence worked really well.
I remember that when the fence was working and the groups were getting quite large a lot of riders were stuffed between the fence and leader and it got confusing to even tell riders apart.
My experience in the larger groups we have had recently it seems that just letting the flyers go there still is a substantial group around the leader can now enjoy the advertised pace. Those that want to ride at designated pace crowd around leader and just let flyers go.
Now in smaller groups, less than 100?, I can see the fence being very beneficial.
i prefer the fence as it forces a great blob to ride in, without it, and regardless of flyers, eveything always gets strung out too much
Riding with a few other people doing the same pace, in groups of maybe three to twelve, offers some benefits. The big blobs may be less interactive for the individual rider. You’re in a crowd, constantly passing or being passed by many others. Letting the ride get strung out, so that you’re closer to trading pulls and looking out for individual riders, can be more interesting.
I found the same thing on real roads. Riding in a blob in the first miles of a mass event is more tedious than the later miles when you’ve found a group to pace with and you’re actually riding with individuals rather than in a blob.
Why is there so much angst about riders who go to fast? I get it if it’s a race you need to be in the right bracket, but if it’s just a ride there are no winners. So why does everyone get their panties in a bunch if someone goes out front?
I also don’t get why I need to be near the ride leader. I’d rather be in a long strung out group than one of 200 people within a few meters of the leader. It’s annoying to constantly be sharing the same “physical” space with others. Doesn’t seem at all real.
I’ve heard ride leaders say they want to make sure the ride is at the right tempo, but you can do that by setting the pace and announcing it. And anyway, most rides even with the fence are often above their posted speeds.
Basically people want people to follow the rules. There’s a ride leader and ignoring their requests is disrespectful. You don’t have to join a group ride to ride in a small group or at your speed, that’s a normal free ride.
Also, new riders try to follow the front, get discouraged and can’t understand why the ‘leader’ (first rider) is going so much faster than the advertised pace. Just do a race or free ride if you want to go faster than the group ride’s advertised pace!
Yes. I was in the Bacon Roll ride this morning. It was quite hard to stay behind the fence and with over 400 riders and the draft, my power was so low it was hardly seeming worthwhile. After 25 min I just decided to go ahead with some other riders ans we stayed together ahead of the fence. Quite frustrating really.
The fence is back and is the best answer. Without it rides just get strung out and the leader is constantly trying to get everyone back together. If people want to go harder there are always harder rides they can do.
I really don’t like the fence at all. There are occasions where it is useful, but also plenty of times where it is not. In a recent B group ride, my power was considerably under a normal B range.
Just like in real life, it is normal to have pockets of riders. There are no winners and losers in group rides, I just want to get a nice workout. It doesn’t make sense for one rider to feel like he’s going well under what he would like, while another is struggling to keep up — that is not fun for anyone.
There are variables. Sometimes the group is just slow that day, or fast another. Sometimes it’s a couple hundred riders, sometimes it is 15. So no one solution is perfect, but how about some common sense?
Look, the real problem with fliers is that they push the pace above where it should be, and that strings everyone out. But if a group breaks off and is 30 seconds ahead or behind, I really couldn’t care less. In that recent B ride, I finally ignored the fence warning along with a bunch of other riders because the pace was around 2.2 or so IIRC. That didn’t stop the constant chirping from leaders and others, but I just don’t understand it. The only other option, which I finally took in another ride, was simply quit, in order to join a different group ride.
My ask of ride leaders and riders in general, if the main group isn’t doing the advertised rate — or even if it is, but is an exceptionally big group — encourage a few packs. There’s no downside here.
The natural pack dynamic is musical chairs: people push the pace at the front, and one by one, people get dropped from the back. Eventually most have been dropped, but they’re scattered over the road, not working together.
If people join a ride with an advertised pace they expect to be able to keep up if they can do that pace. The libertarian position “let everyone do what they want” ignores reality.
I’m glad the fence is back. Maybe riders ahead of the fence should be coned (power penalty) so they can work harder at the nominal pace.
Leaders lead for free in the name of their teams and reputation of the team. If one or more riders begin to distract the ride or abuse the leader or other participants I strongly believe the leader should have the power to do this.
Yes, but the ‘new’ fence does not. And it does not prevent abuse.
The difference just is that fliers IRL are really gone. You do not have to care about them. At Zwift they often just distract the ride in going forth and back and again.
If it’s distracting, yes, that’s a problem. A good example of how it can be handled both from riders and ride leaders was in yesterday’s 3R ride (led by Ian). 100% exactly as it should be (IMHO). Fence was not used at all. Several riders kept pushing the pace. Initially the front would back down a bit, but slowly the pace would increase, again stringing out the group.
So, Ian told the group to break off, get ahead, and stop attacking off the front. And they did. It took a few miles to settle out, but this is how it should be. I stayed in the back group with the ride lead, but maybe another day I’d prefer to push a bit harder and be one going a bit stronger. Had the fence been used and if there was constant “Stay with the group!” chats, it annoys everyone including those who might prefer a stronger pace.
As long as riders break off and aren’t pushing the pace of the main group, I don’t see what the issue is. Sometimes I’m one who does want to go harder, sometimes I’m in the back. It makes no difference to me. Give the ride leaders the tools to boot/whatever as appropriate. If the fence is the right tool, then by all means use it. I don’t think my stance is “letting everyone do what they want”, but rather I see the fence as potentially creating as many problems as it solves. This is similar to the anti sandbagging stuff – yes, it solves some problems, but is overcomplicated and creates more problems.
“I’m glad the fence is back. Maybe riders ahead of the fence should be coned (power penalty) so they can work harder at the nominal pace.”
I’m not against this idea, but the only time it’s not ideal is when an advertised B ride is doing 2.4 w/kg. Again, here, the simple solution of telling riders to break off into groups, with the consequence of booting those who attack off the front or are otherwise disruptive, seems to make the most sense.
Maybe it just depends on the group, ride leaders. To be honest, I’ve found more volatility in D and C rides than in B.
What is a ‘Group Ride’? Ask 20 different people and you will get 20 different answers.
It would seem that ZWIFT needs to define what a group ride is and inform those who are about to participate in said ride what they are getting into.
A simple pop-up window with an “Accept” button being displayed to the rider prior to entering the event queue (similar to the “Entering” event pop-up window) will help set the level of expectation, and accordingly the level of satisfaction, of the event for the rider.
Once group riders accept what the ride is going to be, and the group ride leaders understand what they are trying to do, it will be easier to focus on mechanisms that will support that ride.
ZWIFT can also do a better job of informing riders if they are a good ‘match’ for the group ride. It would be simple to compare the riders history and simply include a “match score” of say 1 to 4 indicating how well the course and pace match the rider.
Hiding riders is certainly a fine idea as it will stop the bleed off of the faster riders and should make the pace of the ride more consistent. Ride leaders are human, some are good at resisting chasing the faster riders, some not so much. Informing the rider and assisting the ride leader seems to be what we should be focusing on.