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Are Zwift Speeds Unrealistic?

     In Zwift, at times you can see riders flying by at 30 mph, but is that how fast they would be going if  you took the power and put it outside? The answer can be simple, and it can be quite complicated, depending on how you think about it. One way to think about it is that Zwift assumes the the road is completely smooth without any rolling resistance, this often is not the case in real life.

    How is Zwift\’s speed calculated? Zwift uses the data that riders enter in when they sign up for Zwift, height, weight, and riders in game bike selection(yes it does make a difference). Zwifters changing their weight in Zwift can make a huge difference, just like in real life, if a 50 kg rider was doing 300 watts and a 100kg rider was doing the same watts, the 50kg rider would still have the weight advantage and be more aerodynamic. So the real question is, are Zwifts speed unrealistic? They can be, and they also can be quite accurate. According to Bicycling Magazine, \”the average Tour de France rider maintains an average speed of 25 to 28 mph on flats, or a 2:24 to 2:08 minute mile.\” During most Zwift races, even in C, on a flat riders go at around 27 mph. A category races can average up to over 30mph in Zwift racing league, sometimes even more in some of the elite races like premier league. 

    So are Zwifts speeds unrealistic? Yes and No, it all depends on where riders live, if the road is smooth, if there is any wind, is there a lot of draft? Remember, Zwift has thousands of riders on every second of the day, when riding on Zwift, riders are constantly drafting each other, sling shotting out of the draft. There are tons of factors of why Zwift speeds may be inaccurate. What do you think about this? Any questions? Comments? Or anything whatsoever, leave a comment below!

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