PD4.1 and coffee breaks

Hi, not entirely sure where to grumble and this is a first for me. But it annoyed me so much I felt the need to vent.

Quite like sweeping, like the burst of energy and a sense of achievement bringing someone back to the pack. Todays ride, wasn’t a formal sweep, noticed someone drop off the back and thought I’ll just give them a tow, my good deed for the day.

Dropping back, getting into the mental mindset of the pain that was about to happen. Rider gets closer, I start to wind up. Ramped up to 7wkg, before settling into an unpleasant 5wkg. Gap is decreasing, legs are no enjoying this at all.

Boom, the rider switches on coffee break. Slightly confused thinking, how will they keep up. Well, this is where it all started to go wrong. Not only did they keep up but they over took. Then throttled my speed. I try a sneaky overtake, knock out a quick 8wkg, no still stuck behind the rider. I repeat this multiple times but stuck behind them in coffee break mode. The pack is slowly disappearing into the distance now. Panic is setting in, coffee breaks are 3 mins long, how big a gap am I going to have to bridge now!!

The one thing I really enjoy doing, sweeping, ruined by a coffee break. Venting my frustration, the pack eases up and comes to save me. The rider finally turns off the coffee break and I make a dash for it. Calm is restored and I stick to the front of the pack for the rest of the ride.

Why would the coffee break and pd4.1 want to be so annoying as to do that.

If they’re doing a coffee break, they should be more or less matching your speed but may roll ahead of your or not. Did the coffee break rider actually leave you behind? That would be unexpected. If you are just motoring along with a coffee break rider you should not have to think about getting in front of them. You just TT back to the group as best you can and they hover around you. My experiences sweeping coffee break riders have all been positive and I ignore their position relative to me. You should be able to “tow” someone on coffee break who is in front of you, because the draft doesn’t matter in that situation. Was any other rider nearby or were you and the coffee break rider alone together?

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I wasn’t dropped, no. But I couldn’t over take or go the speed I should be doing based on my power output. I think that is because of the way pack dynamics now works that you have to produce a significant amount of power to overtake. Hence the throttling, if I was pushing out 4wkg, it seemed a lot more like 3wkg speed. Sticky draft. And because it matched me each time I tried to make a break for it, felt like the brakes were always on.

Just a waste of energy going nowhere on someone who shouldn’t impact my speed because they’ve enabled a coffee break.

I was also a single sweeper, trying to tow a single rider

Thanks that makes more sense to me now. I have not had this particular experience while sweeping people using the coffee stop feature.

I haven’t had the opportunity to sweep someone with coffee break still (seems most folks I run into would rather drop and leave lol).

But I am very familiar with the brake-checking you’re referring to.
As it stands though I don’t fully comprehend how, when, and why it works the way it does; and really have just used it to block people in races more than anything else (and yes, it’s hugely effective).

ZHQ may just need to tweak the code of the CoffeeBreak so they can’t get in front of you and cause these PD issues. In the meantime however; there’s really not much else you can do I don’t think due to what CB does and how it works to match your speed; even if you ramped to push ahead, it would do the same.

I’m willing to bet however this wouldn’t have been an issue with multiple people; but being just 2…

Unfortunate to hear, and maybe a blessing then the people I have requested to use a coffee break to tow them back on… didn’t (and/or just dropped). So it’s good to know this before it happens to me.

But yes, this is effectively being locked into the “wasted watts” efforts of PD4.1, which I don’t personally have an issue with; but when it’s out of your control in these circumstances… definitely would be frustrating.

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Assuming the PD4.1 bug fix was flipped on yesterday, you might want to check again to see if sweeping a coffee break rider works better now.

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I was doing a tour ride this morning and was 35 seconds behind a lead group with two other guys. One goes coffee break, and so does the other one. Suddenly I can’t keep up with them. In two minutes they are 30s ahead of me, and I’m doing more power. What the heck? Why did the brakes go on me and spit me out? After the break they were fresh and I was knackered. I made up 10 seconds, but I felt cheated by the hack.

Unrelated to pack dynamics