Need smaller robopacer w/kg jumps

My w/kg is about 2.0 w/kg. In the past I had ridden with D-Miguel at 2.0 w/kg. However, yesterday there was no 2.0 category. Instead there were the following –

D-Miguel, Waistband, 1.8 w/kg, 21 mph
D-Miguel, Casse-Patte, 1.8 w/kg, 21 mph
D-Maria, Flat Route, 2.2 w/kg, 23 mph
D-Maria, Tire-Bouchon, 2.2 w/kg, 22 mph

Thus, there are two 1.8 w/kg and two 2.2 w/kg. I don’t understand why there are duplicates above 2.0 w/kg and below 2.0 w/kg but no 2.0 w/kg. (Note that the jump from 1.8 to 2.2 is 22% which is just too much.)

Don C.

Change to a TT bike to lose drafting and the 1.8 will push you towards 2.

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TT bike can be dangerous; I’d recommend a gravel frame or the MTB; something that has draft; tighter restrictions could be slower wheels / frames.

That said; if you have to be at that precise of a w/kg, then just do a workout.

What purpose does a robo partner serve if you must be at that precise of a power output? Not only do they vary power on climbs and descents, but are also greatly affected by how large the group is.


Andrew –
I wasn’t trying for precisely 2.0 w/kg. My question was more directed at the Zwift staff who establish the schedule – why have two 1.8 w/kg and two 2.2 w/kg but no intermediate 2.0 w/kg? Instead, why not have one 1.8, one 2.0, and two 2.2 or, alternately, two 1.8, one 2.0, and one 2.2?

It’s entirely likely that when you viewed their w/kg, it was at a time when they matched; ie, one was on an incline, and/or just a more hilly route at that very specific time; as the w/kg is an averaged (not sure by how long), power.

It used to display their current (as of opening the menu), power, but if I recall that was adjusted so you didn’t have bots above each other when they shouldn’t.

I’m assuming what you saw however was a bot on a more hilly course, at a slightly higher average than normal.
At which case, only recommendation given is a few:
Just do a workout
Change bike / wheels
Try the same bot on another world.

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It’s because there are two sets of the bots, one in Watopia and one in another world (used to be Makuri but has been France recently).

It’s to give a variation of route on each pace.

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James –
On the home screen that shows all of the available robopacers, are the indicated w/kg the current (instantaneous) robopacer w/kg or are they the average robopacer w/kg that should be expected throughout the entire route?

The w/kg fluctuates based on the gradient. It can go as high as 10% extra (on uphills) or as low is 20% less (on downhills)

This is worth a read: All About Zwift Robopacers (Formerly Known as Pace Partners) | Zwift Insider


James –

Today I tried a robopacer ride with Maria on the Flat Route. Zwift’s homepage (where you choose your robopacer) showed Maria at 2.0 w/kg with a speed of 23 mph. When I joined Maria I checked her on three flat sections (0 degrees incline). In all three instances she was at 2.2 w/kg, 10% higher than advertised on the homepage. (According to the link that you provided, Maria’s nominal rating is 2.2 w/kg.)

I weigh 75.8 kg so I could have kept up at 2.0 w/kg (152 watts, near my continuous upper output). However, 2.2 w/kg would have required 167 watts just on the flat sections which is just too high for me. I abandoned after 7 minutes.

I think there are two possibilities about the robopacer’s homepage advertised w/kg –

  1. Either the value is the robopacer’s current (instantaneous) value (in Maria’s case, perhaps she was going downhill).
  2. Or the value is just wrong (some problem with Zwift’s algorithm).

In either case, the advertised w/kg should be the robopacer’s w/kg over flat terrain. Then a Zwifter can sign up with a realistic robopacer (realizing that the in-game w/kg will fluctuate somewhat depending on the gradient).

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Choose RP.

RP too fast.

Teleport to next lowest RP.

RP still too fast.

Teleport to next lowest RP.

Etc etc


Yep agree. It used to show this but it reverted to showing their current pace (eg going downhill) for some reason.

Is there a plan to fix this?

Yeah, not sure when though.

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Or even better, the average w/kg over the last lap. In any case, Don, what I usually do is simply to set my weight lower or higher on a day-to-day basis in order to get the optimal workout. I really like riding with RPs and teleporting is obviously not a fun thing to do all the time.

Continuing the discussion from RoboPacers - An Open Discussion:

Or tweak the frame/ wheel setup to be more / less aero, which I find is ample flexibility for minor adjustments between bot powers…

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That works on a per-user basis too; I do it all the time on some of my weekly group rides since we have varying paces through the week. On the slower rides I’ll use the Safety or Buffalo wheels just to slow me down (and they do quite a bit).

Pulling one slight conversation over from that thread though @Ian_Attoe had asked if people adjusted their weights to ride with others.

If you actually search around, there formerly were indeed a few group rides, where they would recommend you a weight to put into Zwift to be able to keep up; I don’t recall the name of the group rides or who hosted them; but they did, or do still exist.
You’ll know you’ve run into one of those people when you run into them on ZP and see they once had a minimum weight of like 30kg (no I’m not making this up).

I thought it was insane people would do this and recommend this just to make some group rides happen, but… that’s how they ran it.

Personally I just hate anything that involves cheating physics for the sake of a group ride. If you want that tight of a pack; enable rubberband. Because otherwise you end up with people that forget to change their weights, and end up in a situation with CE where they’re wondering how or why they’re a Cat B when really they should be a D.

I understand your point, but the answer to that solution is what Od just said and also this specific thread.

Either slow yourself down with a slower frame / wheels, or go to a faster RP. (Or, as I’ve said a few times before… do something other than ride with an RP, I get not everyone wants to hear that as a solution, but again… the RPs don’t need to be the answer to every question).

As for your question about pulling packs; while in a pack, at least with 4.1 now, it might not. With PD4, an increase in pack size would 100% increase in pace with more people. I’m still trying to grasp the nitty gritty about 4.1, but while it certainly won’t be as bad a s 4.0, if you find yourself out the front of a pack for extended periods, you’re definitely pulling the pack, which does absolutely affect everyone.

I don’t want to drag this long post on too much further; but here is a screenshot of one of our saturday rides, where we had some folks pushing the pace for the first half of the ride; to the point I even questioned it with my leader of the ride who agreed… sadly no amount of fence would help.

But this should be pretty clear evidence that pack pushers absolutely can force the outcome of a group ride… these folks just ended up burning out and leaving the ride.

Also for clarity sake, this IS with PD4.1, so while there may not have been as much pack churning; this is just the evidence to support front runners’ ability to alter the power requirements for group rides.

Speed wise; max speed in one section of the course:
Lap 1 at 36mph (42minutes in)
Lap 2 at 33mph (1:20)
Lap 3 at 30mph (2:06)
Lap 4 at 30mph (2:50)

(Note I’m cutting that big spike off the front; so it isn’t affecting those averages shown at the top; same with final 10 minutes)

The obvious statement is “well of course you went faster, you were putting down more power!”

And the answer is… yes, of course; because we had people pulling the pack; and it was either risk frying everyone on the ride on the fence, or accepting it until they all burned out and left. So we stuck with option B.

But I’m hoping this evidence is empirical enough for people less familiar with how front-runners can affect group rides.

Dude, relax. it’s just a training platform. Nothing on your end or his end is going to change. People will play the “game” as they see fit or better yet, it helps them to improve to get better…

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Currently changing your weight is the only real option for keeping RoboPacers as a realistic option for heavy riders.

Clicks on “Latest”, clicks on “Replies”, looks a the top 10 replied to topics…

Dude, people spit fire over this