Am I getting back my aero? : Post race analysis

In tonight’s race I was hoping to move another step forward with my aerodynamics. In my race plan, Crosswindy JC/27, I was predicted a 21:14. However a complete stop a mile into the race and I still finished with a 21:12, let’s find out why!


At least my stop was early in the time trial, so I can cut this out and get some decent aero data. I did this by creating a new Interval [learn how to create intervals]. This allows me to isolate that part of the ride and ensure my CdA analysis is not including any of the braking or the strained and overgeared return to race speed.

Screenshot 2021-06-08 234707

Am I getting back my aero…

From the start of this season I’ve been struggling with getting my head comfortably low. So I’ve been making some methodical alterations to my setup. Changing just one thing at a time. First of all I swapped my Aerohead to a pointy Giro Advantage helmet. I did this as I felt the helmet’s tail may be the best band aid while I figure out why I can’t get my head below my shoulders. There was a small aero improvement with the Advantage helmet.

I then looked at why I couldn’t tuck my head like I have been able to in previous years. At first I put this down to decreased flexibiity during the off season. I eventually decided this could be due to repositioning the saddle a little more reawards. I did this as I was having issues leveling the saddle. In training I didn’t feel much difference from the change. In racing however I think it could have been a tipping point.

I’ve been using myWindsock CdA analysis of my time trials to track all my changes and the results are measurable. Having raced with my saddle forward by 1.5cm in the Giro Advantage pointy helmet I thought it best to see if it is still the correct choice. [Learn how to measure your CdA]


Success! The more forward position is further improved by returning to my Aerohead helmet.

Sprint finish

In my race planning I wanted to know whether it was better to be out of the saddle at the finish. I decided, from my analysis, the extra power cancelled out the aero penalty. So I jumped on the pedals over the small hill to the finish. It just felt right at the time.

Was it a quick night?

Overall the wImpact% was 1.3% which is very good. In past events on this course the wImpact% has been as high as 7.2% [learn more about wImpact%]. The crosswind added an additional 4 metres of ‘Feels Like’ elevation gain which again isn’t too bad when compared to the additional 18 metres last time at this course [learn more about Feels Like Elevation].

You can analyse all of your time trials or training ride with myWindsock, find out how to get started.

Author: Ben Norbury

Ben Norbury is four times Manchester & District Middle Distance and Best All Rounder Time Trial Champion from 2016-2019. During this time he developed software to eliminate uncertainty of the weather conditions out of his pre-race preparation.