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Race wheels -- worth it to rent?
CREATED: 05/30/14 by ryhudson REPLIES: 4
ryhudson's ravatar ryhudson    JOINED: 8/18/10    POSTS: 27
Race wheels -- worth it to rent?
POSTED: 5/30/14 11:41 AM

I ride and race on Felt's stock TTR3 Wheelset, but with Rev3 Williamsburg (OLY) approaching, and with it being my "A" race this season, I'm considering renting some Zipp wheels. My question: is it worth spending $150? Having never been on race wheels before, will I notice a difference? (Been racing tris for five years now, fwiw.)

kev7's ravatar kev7    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 458
RE: Race wheels -- worth it to rent?
POSTED: 5/30/14 12:07 PM

Lots of articles on the subject. This article lists the approximate advantage of various options. It states 71 seconds over 40K compared to a good aero TT helmet with 67 seconds.

http://cyclingtips.com.au/2010/04/biggest-bang-for-your-buck-in-time-trial-equipment/

So is about 1 minute worth $150? If you do not have an aero helmet, then that would be a wiser long-term investment.

However, for the 'cool' factor, race wheel just look fast standing still!

ryhudson's ravatar ryhudson    JOINED: 8/18/10    POSTS: 27
RE: Race wheels -- worth it to rent?
POSTED: 5/31/14 10:23 AM

That's about what I figured -- thanks for the quick reply. Like a lot of aero upgrades, seems worthwhile only the half-Iron distance (and greater).

But still, it's so tempting to look pro ...

HappyRunner's ravatar HappyRunner    JOINED: 1/15/11    POSTS: 200
RE: Race wheels -- worth it to rent?
POSTED: 6/01/14 7:25 PM

The testing is all things being equal. One thing to factor in about aero helmets is the reduction in ventilation and what effect that will have on power generated over the course of a race.

Coming from a running background, I've never quite gotten used to the idea of "buying speed."

kev7's ravatar kev7    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 458
RE: Race wheels -- worth it to rent?
POSTED: 6/03/14 12:18 PM

As a runner myself, "buying speed" will only get you so far. In reality, there is no substitute for training and lots of it.

Nevertheless on the bike, aero matters. This article states that "three minutes saved over 40km [25 miles] when at a speed of 40km/h [25mph]" with more aero equipment and clothing.

http://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/article/angryasian-aero-differences-you-can-feel-41242/

It comes down to how much you are willing to spend on "free" speed.

And I never had an issue with aero helmet ventilation at Louisville, Eagleman, and other hot triathlons.

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