Power vs Weight, Men vs Women (Pros)
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  1. #1
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    Power vs Weight, Men vs Women (Pros)

    What's an averagish weight for an all-rounder in the world tour peloton? And the weight of the female equivalent? I don't use power meters so I don't know how to word this but maybe like average power over 30 minutes or something, maybe max power, whatever's the most relevant measurement: How much power do the average all-rounder male/female pros make?
    Taking aero into account I'm guessing the average female is 6" shorter than the average male so there's a slight aero advantage there.

    I've ridden with pro men but never been around a fast woman and I'm wondering how fast they are. In MTB there's the whole agressiveness aspect that affects speed but in road it's just power vs weight vs aero so it seems like it should be more equal.

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    use a torque wrench

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    If I'm reading that chart correctly it confirms my suspicions that the best women in the world could hang in a men's Cat 1/2 race. That's about how the times play out in MTB races too.

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    I'm reading it differently. The best women would clean up in men's cat 1 or 2 races, based on the power numbers.
    ... 'cuz that's how I roll.

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    Quote Originally Posted by looigi View Post
    I'm reading it differently. The best women would clean up in men's cat 1 or 2 races, based on the power numbers.
    I'm thinking this depending on course. Men seem to favor the sprinting end comparing cat 1/2 men to pro ladies but for the longer intervals, 5 min and FTP, the ladies are going to do better. So hilly races, ladies are going to tear it up. Same with mtb since there's a lot more FTP power levels during a race and much less max effort stuff.

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    Strava does not bear that out.

    Look at a popular climb in your area. Mt. Diablo in the east SF area, for example.

    Plenty of Cat 1 and 2 men faster than the fastest woman.
    "You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out." -WTS

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    Quote Originally Posted by le duke View Post
    Strava does not bear that out.

    Look at a popular climb in your area. Mt. Diablo in the east SF area, for example.

    Plenty of Cat 1 and 2 men faster than the fastest woman.
    A little different than the intent of the OP but related and not speaking specifically to Mt. Diablo but in general:

    In the Strava over 65 age group some of the best climbers, especially on the steep climbs are women. Then when you assume there many more over 65 men it makes the statistic even more interesting IMO. So how age plays into the ability process besides overall decline has a twist in the theoretical man v woman.

    I assume the reason is that with fit men and women cyclist over 65 the women are significantly lighter and the power difference is much less than the young folks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by le duke View Post
    Strava does not bear that out.

    Look at a popular climb in your area. Mt. Diablo in the east SF area, for example.

    Plenty of Cat 1 and 2 men faster than the fastest woman.
    I don't think there's enough world class pro women to expect one of them to show up on even popular Strava segments. Like I said, I've never ridden with (or done the same Strava segment as) a top pro woman despite many years of racing and living in cycling hotbeds. From Strava it's easy to assume even fast women are way slower. My girlfriend used to take all the QOMs by drafting me while I was riding at 3/4 speed. However, I suspected that truely fast women are out there who can make use of their lighter weight and reduced aero profile.

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    Power vs Weight, Men vs Women (Pros)

    Ok. Then, just look at the times of world class women. Like, Mara Abbott, Evelyn Stevens, or some of the other women in the pro circuit. Specifically look at their QOMs and compare them to males.

    Sample size is more or less irrelevant here. Find the people who are at the pointy end of the female races and compare times.
    Last edited by le duke; 05-13-2015 at 11:26 AM.
    "You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out." -WTS

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    IMO, the top women can hang in there in P12 races, but not clean up. This is based on riding frequently with a local domestic pro woman, having ridden with the women's US national champ and, most recently, from the Tour of the Gila where our master's category was gaining time on the women's UCI peloton and we had to stop twice to allow them time to build up a lead. I was also unfortunate enough to have a mechanical on another day and get stuck behind them. I was able to keep up with them riding solo and I'm an old, but strong master. This was a climber's race and field.

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    Quote Originally Posted by redlizard View Post
    IMO, the top women can hang in there in P12 races, but not clean up. This is based on riding frequently with a local domestic pro woman, having ridden with the women's US national champ and, most recently, from the Tour of the Gila where our master's category was gaining time on the women's UCI peloton and we had to stop twice to allow them time to build up a lead. I was also unfortunate enough to have a mechanical on another day and get stuck behind them. I was able to keep up with them riding solo and I'm an old, but strong master. This was a climber's race and field.
    You can't really look at it that way. Race dynamics dictated that scenario, not individual or group strength.

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    Quote Originally Posted by deviousalex View Post
    You can't really look at it that way. Race dynamics dictated that scenario, not individual or group strength.
    True, but good luck finding races with World Tour women racing directly against men of any category. You go with the best data points you can. BTW, Mara Abbot was in the women's field and won. No way they can challenge the win with the 1/2 men.

    One additional data point - we have a domestic pro woman that often races our local weekly crit series with the men's P123 field. She can hang in the back half, but she can't contest the race. Perhaps a WT woman pro would fare better, but I still doubt they could challenge for the win.

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    According to the chart, there's a big difference between world class women and domestic pro women. There're also way way fewer top level pro women cyclists around..maybe some dozens? Starting with fewer women cyclists to begin with, there is also far less development and support of women to become racers.
    Last edited by looigi; 05-14-2015 at 04:55 AM.
    ... 'cuz that's how I roll.

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    Power vs Weight, Men vs Women (Pros)

    Well, Mara Abbott and Evelyn Stevens are two of the best riders in the world. I'd argue that Mara is one of, if not the best, pure climbers in the world.

    She's still slower than many Cat1/2 men.
    "You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out." -WTS

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    At today's Tour of California time trial stage, 22 women ran the same course before the men's race. You can compare times there... the women weren't in the middle of a stage race so there is that to consider but anyway... Evelyn Stevens was one of the women...

    AMGEN Tour of California :: 2015 Stage 6 Results: Overall

    AMGEN Tour of California :: 2015 Women's Time Trial

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    That ~ 10% difference in time is what, in terms of power? 15%? 20%?

    Obviously CdA is a factor, but that should favor the women.
    "You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out." -WTS

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    105th out of 133, and most of those male racers weren't even trying hard ahead of Baldy stage.
    Power is proportional to third power of speed. So those 13% differences in speed (14.2/12.5) translate to 47% differences in power.

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    The ToC is also a effectively continental race so while there are top riders there the rest of the field should be thought of as continental level. Not that I am knocking the ToC, it is just that it clashes with the Giro.

    Edit: I should say that this is all besides the point. International women's racing is pretty exciting if you ever get to see it on TV. Maybe women won't every be able to compete with men but who cares if it is good racing it is good racing.
    Last edited by Chris Oz; 05-16-2015 at 02:14 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Oz View Post
    The ToC is also a effectively continental race so while there are top riders there the rest of the field should be thought of as continental level. Not that I am knocking the ToC, it is just that it clashes with the Giro.

    Edit: I should say that this is all besides the point. International women's racing is pretty exciting if you ever get to see it on TV. Maybe women won't every be able to compete with men but who cares if it is good racing it is good racing.
    THIS!

    I dont know about everybody else, but i thought this years womens cyclocross was much more exciting then the mens

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Oz View Post
    The ToC is also a effectively continental race so while there are top riders there the rest of the field should be thought of as continental level. Not that I am knocking the ToC, it is just that it clashes with the Giro.

    Edit: I should say that this is all besides the point. International women's racing is pretty exciting if you ever get to see it on TV. Maybe women won't every be able to compete with men but who cares if it is good racing it is good racing.
    Absolutely! I love women's racing! I wish it got more coverage!

    If my memory serves me, Vos has a ton of training rides on Strava btw.
    To date, philosophers have merely interpreted the world in various ways. The point however is to change it.

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