Pace Partner New Ride Routes [March 2021]

We’re rolling out evolutions to our popular Pace Partner feature! Starting on March 23, 2021 Pace Partners will begin rotating to different bike routes every week following this matrix:

Run routes will not rotate (for now).

  • Each Pace Partner will stick to routes with a similar elevation-to-distance ratio as their original routes
  • Route changes will occur on Monday mornings between 04:00 - 05:00am UTC.
    Use this handy site to convert to your local time zone.

We’ve been making improvements in the way we operate Pace Partners since we first launched them. This new route rotation schedule is part of our ongoing work to optimize the Pace Partner experience for our Zwifters who frequently join Pace Partners in Watopia. In the future, we may rotate courses even more frequently.

Nice one . We was wearing a big rut in the road down the original routes . A welcome change for us to enjoy . And I like this future as well … sent them off into the wilderness of alternative worlds and Angela up Ventoux :heart_eyes:

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Nice enhancement

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Nice! Coco cadence gets a bit boring in the desert after going back and forth!

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Good update, someone must have discovered the low hanging fruit bunch.

Though, still think you are missing a trick with a pace partner up one of the Alpe routes. People want to climb it and improve their time, perfect opportunity to set one at 3.2 for the sub 1hr climbing and then branch out either side of that.

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There are a couple of oversights here.

  • Bowie on steeper downhills is very hard to keep up with for lighter riders. Bowie and Coco should switch routes. Anyone that rides with the bots often will notice the need for this

  • We need a bot with a pace between Bowie and Coco but on the same course as Bowie and or Coco. This will give men the opportunity to do a dynamic ride with varying pace.

  • Please make it easier to locate the bots visual. Many times you have no clue where they are until they pass you, then you have to sprint to catch them. The bots should always be on the mini maps.

  • I would like the option to hide all riders except the bots.

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The pace partners are great and it’s brilliant that you are improving them. I agree that power downhill should be adjusted and if you were able to do that also increase it going up hill to give it a more realistic feel. I’m sure you could create code to change the pace by gradient.

But as mentioned this is really great. Thanks!

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Careful what you ask for , thats dangerously close to a feature regularly built into updates :rofl:

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I would probably second that , but freely admit it is just my personal preference that the bots need to push a little harder on the ascents anyway .

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Great to see them mixing it up a bit.

A couple of things I’d like to know:

  1. Why don’t the bots have personal names any more - why is it just “B.” instead of “Bowie” (or any other names beginning with those letters)?

  2. Is there any way they could make them more visible? Riding in the desert yesterday, I found it difficult to see “C” because of all the thumbs. Could the “giant spotlight” maybe stay on permanently - not just when you’re some distance away?

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I have to agree with you - on the downhills the pace partners should ease off a bit, it’s very hard for light riders to stay with him on the downhills.

Also is quite hard to see the bots in big groups.

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What you’re asking is really just to lower the pace partner’s weight, isn’t it?

I believe at least D. Diesel and C. Cadence must be rather heavy. I’ve noticed that it’s incredibly hard to go as slow as D. Diesel uphill (he slows down to nearly rolling at all), while it’s also really hard to follow him downhill (he just flies away), e.g. through the Esses I just give up. I’m at 73kg myself (not really flyweight) and based on my experience I believe he is somewhere in the 100-120 kg range…

Actually, I wish Zwift could tell us their weight.

I noticed that it’s a lot easier for me to ride with B. Brevet than with D. Diesel. Which is kind of funny since D. Diesel is riding at a much lower W/kg :wink: So I suspect B. Brevet to be closer to my weight - I would guess he is nearby 80-90 kg.

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Shuji
Jul '20

What are the configurations of the Pace Partners? [Updated w/ bot “weights” and wattage range]

  • Diesel Casual-paced group ride with a few gentle hills. 1 - 2.4 w/kg @ 82kg = 82-197w

  • Cadence Moderately-paced group ride with occasional hills. 2.5 - 3.1 w/kg @ 65kg = 163-202w

  • Brevet Expert-paced group ride with frequent climbs. 3.2 - 3.9 w/kg @ 82kg = 263-320w

  • Anquetil Elite-paced ride on a challenging route. Many tough climbs! 4+ w/kg @ 65kg = 260w+

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Good shout on that … Could be right as Angela also struggles on Climbs.

+1 I think to the nirvana of being able to spawn out own personal BOT where we can configure that parameter as well (Bot Weight) .

Be good however to know exactly what weight the various bots are configured with @shooj .

Or indeed if weight is somehow not factored into the bot logic at all .

I notice , much more clear cut and visible with Angela (because she is often with only a few followers is easier to measure these things ) had parts of the course where she was extremely fast for that 4.2 WKG and the gradient would not account for that . Perhaps there is something else going on so knowing what that is would be good .

The Bot intro information for example states a target range but the BOT always cleaims to sit on a fixed value . Is that range maybe just to reflect the expected user power range to work with the BOT . I cant see that being the case because it would be lower not higher (assuming you always let the BOT pace you and not the other way round) . Is it the case that the BOT does change power but it is not shown on UI ?

@shooj I would be happy if it helps to screen shot cases if there is value in doing so to investigate something that might not be expected for example.

Steve posted the weights just above your reply, these were made available a few days after the bots were released last July.

Weird, then weight alone can’t explain why I feel it’s harder (both physically and mentally) to follow D.Diesel through Esses than follow B.Brevet through the bumpy parts of Sand & Sequoias. D.Diesel “feels” quite a bit heavier since he slows down a lot on each climb and just slides away on descents… They don’t behave like equal-weight riders.

Maybe it’s related to D.Diesel typically being in a larger group than B.Brevet, or maybe they have increased Diesel’s weight without telling us?
(I haven’t been riding with any of them since January or something like that, though)

Could it be that it is because they just ride at the relatively consistent wattage? As a 93KG rider, Going up the Alpe or Epic KOM usually involves increasing my wattage by around 100, and my speed dropping to less than half what I had been doing at the lower wattage on the flat.

My avatar then tears down the descent while I am hardly putting any wattage through the pedals at all (fastest time up the Alpe: 58:41, fastest time down: 9:28 (ish)).

It depends on how the range of power is used. I thought they rode at constant power, but the posts above show a range. If they behave like normal riders, they go towards the top of the range in climbs, towards the bottom in descents, and in-between on the flats; inverse that behavior, and they will become extremely difficult to follow.

I tried following Diesel once or twice, I spent my time doing the yo-yo of too far back pushing like crazy to just flying ahead looking for the brakes.

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According to the rider list they just ride at a fixed W/kg, even if Zwift wrote they’re within some wider range. I’ve never seen a pacer bot change W/kg at all. So since D.Diesel slows down a lot on every climb and speeds up like crazy on every downhill, I expected him to be more in the 100–120 kg range (or even heavier) than those 82 kg…