What is Zwift Labs Experiment F1001-A

I noticed this ride but had no idea what it entailed. Can anybody explain?

According to the event description it’s “Ride leader fence testing”.

Ride Leader Fence Testing

30 Min Ride
Vary between 1w/kg-3w/kg
Flat route
5 minutes per pace target (1.0 1.5, 2.0, 2.5, 3.0, 3.5) in random order

I guess maybe something to do with ensuring people on a group ride can’t get too far ahead of the ride leader. Like a rolling fence beyond which they can’t ride, no matter how much power they put out.

A rider from ZwiftHQ is listed to ride, so that would add credence to the idea it’s testing a potential new game mechanic. Other notable ride leaders in the event also bear this out. Tim Searle for example.

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So people pick a level and stay with it or everyone moves. Seems like not a regular ride anyway. Thanks

This will be so cool if can help the ride leaders. Lets hope you are correct @Daren

If so, I guess this would be to eliminate all those that take flyers in group rides.

That said, I do not understand why one would join a group ride and then take off at a pace that exceeds that of the group. Even more incomprehensible is the anger and complaining of those in the group ride towards the flyer. I have even seen ride leaders turn into complete a#$hats yelling at the flyers. Who cares! Let them go. Out of sight, out of mind!

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This ride is one of a few experimental rides I’m running to test the feasibility of a group ride feature. Right now I’m enlisting the help of many of our ride leaders to act as test subjects. :slight_smile:

Please note that this ride (and its feature description) should not be interpreted to mean we will ship any of the features tested in the experiments.

If tests go well, we’ll iterate and learn … if tests go poorly, we’ll iterate and learn. :ride_on:


@Wes As a ride leader of 3 years for ZHCC this is a very simple, effective and welcome solution to the disruption “flyers” can create to a group ride. Particularly groups of a lower w/kg. Let’s hope we see this integrated into the game sooner rather than later. Lee - ZHCC Sub 2.0 Capo.

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All In (as they do in poker): waste of company software resources -
As I’ve said in many posts on FB and in the forums - flyers be flyers, in Zwift and IRL. It’s so easy to solve this without using up the software team: group riders can ignore flyers.
In fact, it’s a good test riders mental skills - to remain in the GROUP despite seeing and feeling the urge to ride off the front when flyers occur. Same IRL rides. As the saying went, back in the Chicago group rides I did: “Let them go!”

I don’t have a problem with the flyers, you get those that sigh up for a ride and plan to fly off the front.
BUT i am concerned about those that get pulled along with the Flyers not realizing that the beacon is way behind, then they Blow up and blame the ride leader for going to fast.


Good point - hadn’t thought of that - if Leaders want this feature, then then should have it -

But just like IRL rides, when I hear about friends getting tickets for blowing the stopsigns, I tell them, well, you could have stopped, and it’s the law. Maybe flyers can get “Zwift tickets” :wink:

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It’s not just long-range flyers that are the problem. It’s also those at the front of the pack, pushing up the pace. Because of the draft effect, it can be very difficult to split them without a noticeable drop in pace. And then they might come back, and then start pushing the pace again. I see this a lot in much larger group rides. With a fence, it’d be possible to have those say 100m in front of beacon (not unreasonable in large group rides) booted for pushing the pace when they should be a max of 30m in front of beacon.

On/off switch for the fence is a must since many group rides end with a “race” while the leader maintains the advertised pace.

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I’d be booted every ride - I consider myself a great pack and group rider (got certified in '94). I move around and can get 50 or 100m in front, and then drift back to beacon and back further. I’d say a more lenient 1km would be fine. My cycling Brownian motion is much greater than +/-30m. I’d feel punished unfairly (as in how am I responsible) for other’s behavior, like the guys who lap the group in NY and Richmond. If this was IRL, you could limit me to +/-25mm, but Tacx/Zwift/Internet/ANT+ is just not that accurate or responsive.

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I am not a flyer but I’m often in front of the beacon and can never tell whether I’m 30m or 100m. I stay in front because if I fall even the slightest behind I can’t get back; or if I can get back I’m worn out. So I ride in front so I don’t get dropped. Sometimes the beacon seems to very quickly be behind me and I lose sight. The game doesn’t let you see the beacon for long if you get ahead. It’s all very tricky to manage.

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I super agree on this point (and I’d forgotten it). Indeed, if I’m not out ahead on the downhills, down from the tower, or KOM, or Alpe, or any downhill, the group will drop me. I wrote a long post (essay) on this back in Oct. or Nov. '18… and everyone had suggestions on how to keep up on the downhill (and I’m not thin by any stretch of the imagination). The only way I can maintain contact on downhills is to zoom ahead and let the pack catch me on the next flat or hill. Thanks D.N.

Very cool feature. Just took a look on it in zwiftinsider video review.
Hope it will be implemented very soon.
For the ahead distance, hope it will be more than just 2-3 seconds in-front of the leader.
I think the reasonable allowed max. should be around 20-30 seconds.

I’m 49kg. I have no hope if I get dropped. On the downhills I need to be ahead or the pack catches me and it’s over! I’ve ridden at 3.4w/kg and can’t catch them. Just can’t do it.

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Well…I’m 83 kg and it happened to me to be dropped from the group ride (was on something else, speaking with someone ) and couldn’t catch the group on 3.4-3.7w/kg ))
But it is something that is known in Zwift - always stay in the group or will be dropped without any success to catch the group. Some group rides have two leaders: one in-front and one in the back - so, all those who drops could ride with the second group in the back.

With all this, I think that those 20-30 seconds max. ahead of the leader is very reasonable time.

They had a sweep but I had to ride hard for the sweep to get me back. Learned my lesson; stay ahead of the beacon

That seems far too much to me. It’s a huge distance, and you’ve already split the group once a bunch has gone 100m ahead, let alone 1000. This feature is more aimed at keeping the group together as a single cohesive unit, not enbling it to fracture into multiple groups up to 1km ahead of the leader.