Olympic Year Treats All Handcyclist

Olympic Year Treats All Handcyclist

📁 Featured News, Sports 🕔20.March 2016
Olympic Year Treats All Handcyclist

It’s an Olympic year and just like a 10 year old child anticipating Christmas I await an unveiling of a superior handcycle that an Olympian will ride onto the podium.  Every 4 years you can expect handcycle manufacturers to pull out all the stops. Imagine if the Super Bowl was only played every 4 years.  This is as much the Super Bowl for the athletes as it is for the handcycle manufacturers. 

Our sport is an equipment based adventure. It’s mind boggling for a rider that isn’t in touch with their equipment and riding style. Carbon fiber vs. aluminum, 700c, 650c or 20”, tubular or clincher, disc or spoked wheel, I’m going to stop there.  My mind hurts already.  On a flat time trial course the wrong wheel choice can hemorrhage seconds every mile.  Certain handcycles are said to be more aero than others. Sometimes aero doesn’t equal light weight and sometime light weight doesn’t equal stiff which could soften power transfer and responsiveness. 

I can just imagine being at the Olympic village. A week before your first race you’re out for a training ride on one the days leading up to the big event.  You see a handcycle that one of your competitors is on and you can’t believe your eyes. Where did that come from?  I’ve never seen a handcycle like that. Is it better then what I have? If that seed is planted, have you already lost an edge?

Only the very best of the best get to participate in the Olympics. What will be the most popular handcycle this time?  What will the wheel selection be? Those are the things I’ll be watching. I depend on the Olympics to sift out the shiny gold pieces of equipment just like a prospector during the gold rush. 

How does this affect the average rider and the guy seeking to get into racing? Believe it or not the average rider benefits more from riding good equipment then the Olympic racer. The thought is that the better the athlete the more they can overcome on race day compared to the weekend warrior who rides 3 hours a week. The weekend warrior needs every advantage they can get to achieve their potential.  

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