Aerodynamics

Let's face it: A Strada isn't the most efficient design. But it is doing its job nicely…
I guess I'm one of the slowest bicyclists in existence. My average speed on longer rides is something around 28 km/h. Riding my Strada, that is. I'm even slower on my other bikes (who would have guessed?) and my upper limit for a comfortable ride is somewhere around 35 km/h. Nothing to write home about.

On Monday I was following a friend on a recumbent along the Maas towards Neer, when a "serious" cyclist on expensive carbon equipment closed up with us at high speed but then hanging at my ass like a bad odor – something that usually annoys me. After taking a break there for a minute he passed us but didn't accelerate too much. We decided to play a bit with him so I sped up and did to him what he was doing to me. At 36 km/h I decided to pass him (we had to finish this before arriving at Neer where I would have to stop at the checkpoint of the Brevet I was test-driving) but he didn't want to give up and hung on. Not wanting to waste too much energy (at that point I still had to go another 200 km) I held my speed at 45 km/h which this genius regarded as a kind of my admitting defeat (or something alike) and intended to pass me. The moment he pulled out to the left the wind hit him like a hammer – to me it seemed like he ran into a wall.

I never gave a lot of thought to aerodynamics. I bought my VM to be able to carry enough food through the night. And dry clothing. And enough spare parts. Water. Chocolate. And did I ever mention food? A Strada might not be the ultimate design regarding aerodynamics (or said cyclist wouldn't have gained hanging on my tail) but it is doing quite some job (or I wouldn't have gotten rid of him that fast).

[So I finally met one of those Testosterone-toasters who have to be faster than anyone they encounter – how in hell could he be ignorant of the fact that he could not win that kind of race with a VM?]