ZwiftPower Category

Hi All,

Can someone explain exactly how the zwiftpower category works? I have seen comments on this stating it’s the last 30 days. If I go back 30 days for my 20m power I have hit 4.2w/kg 5 times and only twice gone under 4w/kg and yet my catergory says B - almost A?


Your average is 4w/kg over the past 3 best events which you can see on your profile.

Thanks Dean, Yeah I have self upgraded but was just wondering why mine still says B - almost A if my 5 best races in the last 90 days are all 4.2w/kg

Because its taking 95% of the the best 3, not 100%.


I suspect (had too many beers to do the maths) that one more good race and you will offically be an A. Congrats - very envious.

ahh I get it now

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Hi, please may I add a query , I see the following for a rider listed as cat B almost A , please can you explain how that is worked out

In the screenshot posted above you will find that ZwiftPower also enforces a minimum absolute watts limit - 250W for A-cat. Your rider example happens to sit just below that limit, hence the B-cat.

Thanks for explaining the logic, it does seem a little crazy that a low weight rider can climb at close to 5 W/kg for 20 min and still enter Cat B races based
on minimum FTP.

But their total watts is relatively low. So it’s not crazy. They don’t stand a chance on the flat, but they’re going to do well on hills.

I understand the thought, but being 62kg I am capped by almost precisely the same watt limit (I can put out 260W before breaking 4wkg on 95%).

Not that it matters to me now as I’m far from reaching either limit, but it got me frowned when I upgraded from C to B. Upgrading while getting smacked by lighter riders on the hills, and smacked by heavier riders on the flats. The ZP rankings show the same: the best ranking riders are skewed towards the lighter and the heavier riders, mainly in the lower cats. Everyone who falls inbetween is upgraded. It’s the system we have, but it’s not perfect (but let’s not start that discussion here).

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Ummmmm, not sure I agree :thinking:

If you sit in on the flat you can save 30% effort by smart drafting , so you’d be able to stay with the group being driven along by more powerful riders and then destroy everyone up the hill.

The whole w/kg system is deeply flawed. Which is why you don’t see any human-powered outdoor sport using such a system, and especially not any outdoor cycling.

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Zwift math puts me barely in A even though I finish last in A 90% or more of the time. So fun. Anyway, what happens is I can’t keep up with A, especially on the hills, so I fall back and end up pulling a group of B riders who ONLY want to draft, partly because they see I’m an A and think I can do all the work. If I slow down to let them pull for a bit, they slow down to stay in my draft. It’s infuriating. Meanwhile, significant numbers of B riders end up finishing ahead of me, many of them blasting up hills either because they are in the wrong category or are lightweight (legit or not). Hard to believe so many people weigh 56kg.

A couple days ago I pulled two B rider for many kilometers (miles), just to have them pass me on the final sprint. I don’t get it. They could have done more during the race but seemed to only want to beat me at the bottom of A. I can see employing drafting tactics if you’re leading the race, but I fail to see much point for lower cat riders to insist in drafting simply because “that’s how cycling works”.

And this is why A,B,C and D categories should not start together. Also it will help if racers is put in the correct starting pen.

As another poster pointed out, I’m liking TDZ with “no cats”.
Just riders and a finish line.
Makes everybody contribute what they can.

Thanks all for your input , glad it’s not just me that thinks things are flawed with the W/kgs categories.

On a positive note, in these trying COVID times , Zwift is providing a fabulous release ,flaws or otherwise ,satisfying the need for middle aged men to race each on seriously blinged up bikes we couldn’t ever afford in the real world and all this racing now will only make for fitter and faster cycling with our clubs once we can get back out in the fresh air once again when things return to normal… but hang in a minute, I would have to start cleaning my bike again and worry about what kit to pair with the variable conditions …perhaps I’ll stay inside after all …,

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I enjoyed that format as well.

So staggered by, say, 5 minutes. That would be interesting. And perhaps encourage some people to step up in category like they should. I kinda doubt that will ever be implemented widely, unfortunately, as some cats would have to wait or remember that their start time is sometime after the first wave.

Fingers crossed for this. I have no road bike experience other than a few triathlons years ago.

Organizers has the option to stagger the starts (no waiting) and they have the option to have different Categories not see each other.