W/KG seems too high compared to others around me

HI, i have been racing a couple of months now and have been forced to make the jump from B cat to A cat, however i have noted in particular that my avg watts always seem to be higher than those around me, is it possible that i am not able to draft for example and having to put in full power the whole way round?
alternatively is it possible my power readings could be 10-15% higher in Zwift than reality?, the reason i mention this, on the flat in Zwift i can easiliy manage 4.0 w/kg, however as the incline cranks up this becomes almost impossible to achieve and i am on the edge at 3.7 w/kg resulting in me being dropped almost every time, any known issues i could verify here?

I also noted that many B cat riders towards the top end of the podium seem very heavy suggesting they are weight dopiing to remain as B cats than accepting they are putting out too many watts/Kg at their actual weight, has this been looked into?

for info, i use a wheel on Tacx-I genius trainer which is providing all of the power, cadence and resistance data,


Do you say because someone is heavy they can’t be in the top of the B cat?

No, what i am saying is that as an 80+kg rider the power output should be higher to propel that weight around the course and especially up hills, where as some of these guys seem to be 80kg+ put out lower watts than myself and beat other riders by 6-7 minutes. i was comparing a race i entered last night the B cat 6th place rider weighed in at 89kg, put out an avg of 3.5w/kg and beat my A cat time by 6 mins. myself i am 80kg avg 4.0 w/kg over the same course. cannot figure out how this could be?

Normally that sort of difference is down to drafting. The drafting effect is huge if you do it right.


Like real life
Powerfull riders natturaly heavy riders have “advantage” on flat and downhill because higher power output for fight aerodynamique resistance
Lighter rider (less power) have advantage on climb, gravity and w/kg

  • drafting and how you manage power you can easly take 10min with more w/kg.

yes, i agree with your comments, however up an incline an 89kg rider would have to put out a great deal more watts than a 70kg rider to maintain the same speed up the hill and stick with the bunch, this should raise the avg w/kg for that rider to at least somewhere near 4.0 w/kg to match the other riders in the same catagory finishing at the same time with lower weight.

assuming there is little draft effect up the hill

A lot also depends on the length of the incline. I’m 85kg and love Titans Grove because I can power up the short climbs and really get speed going on the down ready for the next up and so roll along against much lighter riders. But on any longer slope that stops working.


That B rider was in the front pack he was in the draft for the whole race. You were in a small group and therefore had to work harder and take pulls in the front.


On the weight of B riders at the front, I suspect this has as much to do with most races being quiet flat and heavier riders, with their higher total watts, have a natural advantage. This is why good track, crit and TT riders aren’t typically light IRL either. If you race them in some of the races up the big mountains it might be different.

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this is true, still i find it hard to understand such a significant diffrence in w/kg 3.5 vs 4.0 - weight 89 vs 80 and time 1.16 vs 1.22 over the same course.
when comparing the A and B cats - the 8 -A cats that finished at 1.17 (not front group) all had varying weight between 67 & 86kg and w/kg 3.8 - 4.2 w/kg, the B cats also an 8 man group finished in 1.16.30 varied between 80-89kg and w/kg 3.5 - 3.9 w/kg.
something is not quite adding up in my head, what am i missing?
looks like it pays to be heavier and use less avg power to actually go faster!!!

Depends if it’s an incline or a true climb. Like most Classics riders, a heavy rider, that is heavy with muscle (not fat) will be able to anerobically muscle their way up a small punchers climb. Get them on a long aerobic climb (of which Zwift has only three: epic, alpe and ventoux) and then it might be different

(I see you’ve just replied, this was aimed at a reply above :))

There’s only 9 absolute watts between 3.5@89 and 4.0@80. A significant difference in draft is easily enough to separate two near equal efforts by 6 mins over a 75-80min course

Draft effect.

Again the A’s had a bigger and longer time in the draft. The B’s had to be in the front for the whole race so less draft.

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fair enough, i am surprised by the diffrence the draft makes,

To test that you can use a TT bike in a group ride and see how much drafting makes.

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this brings me back to my original comment, i do not seem to see much if any diffrence at all on zwift when i am in a group or alone, is it possible that drafting is not working on my turbo trainer or maybe an issue on zwift?

The Turbo you use is irrelevant when it come to in-game drafting, what matters is the in-game bike you use. For example, if you use a TT bike you will not get any drafting benefit.

Just looking at your race picture you can see you are riding all alone, therefore you have to put out a lot more power than in a bunch.

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how do you see that?, from my recollection the main group split up early, i rode mainly with a small group and spent about 8-10km alone catching up after being dropped on the mid section hill. but my power numbers only dropped when the group i was with at the end started slow up realising there was no one to chase and we would fight it out for the lesser places.