Unexpected race category change in profile?

Having been lowish category C throughout my time on Zwift (211 races) I’ve suddenly found C closed to me in ‘category enforced’ races with B and A the only options.
My climbing has improved a little recently but my FTP, 219, is unchanged.
I’ve been into my profile and changed ‘let zwiftpower choose’ to category C, but it hasn’t reopened C category to me. Any advice would be welcome.

As a guess, you did a hard 3, 5 or 10 min effort in a race.

Cat Enforcement doesnt use 20 min efforts, and is different to the zwiftpower category

Edit - It will be the race you did on the 8th… Welcome to B

I’m sorry to say I think your 12 minute effort up Bologna last Thursday just tipped you over the top into B.

Bologna has been the undoing of many racers, in more ways than one.

If you haven’t done hard efforts outside races, I suspect you are going to be told that 13mins at over 3.36 W/Kg has promoted you.

the only practical advice i can give you would be to perform a 3 minute max test to the best of your ability at some point and see if it reclassifies you. it might, it might not.

Thanks for the replies, all of which make sense. I guess a few bang average results will see an auto-correct …

Yes, but it’ll take 60 days to take effect (or I should say 56 days if the tipping event was on the 8th)?

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Worked for me!

Will give the three min test a try, thanks.

I thought that once a CE upgrade had been imposed, it was in place for 60 days regardless? It all seems a bit pointless if this hack circumvents it?

I follow the logic of how a hard 3 min effort may be used to skew your power curve and potentially decrease your CP, but wouldn’t the hard effort breach other short-duration CE metrics?

It is not a hack. A CP curve is only as good as your best efforts, and your 3 min best effort is pretty important to help define the proper curve.

According to multiple posts on here, performing a hard 3 min effort can (sometimes) be sufficient to skew your power curve in such a way that it drops you back down to the lower cat. By my understanding that could be defined as a “hack”?

Maybe there are positive connotations to the word hack?

I would not consider improving the bests of your mean max power curve to be anything other than providing good data for the model to properly categorize you according to how Zwift has set out categories.

Of course, I don’t think CP is a great metric for categories, but that is what we have. edit - I mean zFTP and however that is connected to CP.

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I suppose the model fit is only as good as the data input so, in that respect, you could regard the “hack” as simply providing more realistic data (or maybe not? Category Enforcement Issue - #163 by Rich_aka_sandbagger).

I made this comment back in Feb pretty much showing how sensitive one type of CP calculation was to changes in 3 min power - Category Enforcement - How is my category calculated? [February 2022] - #603 by Edward_Bowen

The rider in the other thread didn’t post his power curve, but we also don’t know exactly how zwift is calculating the zFTP, so the only thing to say is to get power bests at different times starting at 3 min upwards and the CP should be calculated reasonably.


yes, it’s thanks to that post that I worked out that pretty much the entire CE system hinges on your 3 minute. the problem is for most people it’s just not a commonly tested interval. in fact, short duration max tests rarely come up in any training program, something which has always mystified me about cycling… so whenever someone comes here feeling like they’re incorrectly classified and their FTP seems low for the category i usually give them this advice

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