How exciting! A new bike to buy. It looks like the International Triathlon Union (ITU – see info below) has banned your bike from an ITU SPRINT TRIATHLON world final (presumably qualifiers and sprint duathlons).
Why ban my bike?: If you have drafting allowed in a race you gt a pack of cyclists and, with tri bars, you can’t brake safely. You crash and bad stuff happens.
Maybe ITU events attract only the highest quality cyclists…errrr…no…. I’ve competed at ITU events and I’m a bit rubbish unless straight lines are involved :-)
Why the move to draft legal racing?: Any ideas? as I’m not sure!! It must make a race more of a spectacle, maybe. It seems to work well at elite level (olympics + world series) and the general consensus amongst the media-powers-that-be is that it is good. Personally I’m not convinvced, not that my opinion is that important. Even the elite duathlon championships (effectively a super sprint / sprint distance) are draft-legal (not everyone knows that, now you do).
It does make some sense though as, with things as things currently are, sometimes it’s really good swimmers or really good cyclists who win. Now that might be changed to give the good runners a chance :-) What’s this site called again? :-)
Scenario: I get out of the water one minute behind (likely !!!) I pedal like merry hell for 15 minutes with the help of the other rubbish swimmer who qualified alongside me (there are quite a few of us). We then relatively easily catch the main group as no-one in that group is prepared to put the effort in as there are no teams trying to make one person win. Everyone is in it for themselves and therefore it is stupid to be at the front of the bike pack. I cruise for 15+ minutes on the bike in the pack, no way do I take my turn on the front. Then I beat every single really good cyclist AND every single really good swimmer as soon as the running shoes come in. I still won’t win but I’ll do much, much better. Super !
To all National Federations, ITU would like to make you aware that its Executive Board has approved a change to the Competition Rules which will see the ITU Sprint Distance Age Group competition at the World Championship move from a “drafting-illegal” to a “drafting legal” competition. The Standard Distance competition will remain as a “drafting-illegal” race. The enforcement of this rule will go into effect at the Grand Final in 2016. For more information contact ITU Secretary General Loreen Barnett here.
Summary: It makes it a bit more like real ‘elite’ triathlon but it won’t be the same as team orders and team work will not be there. Obviously there are some scenarios that counter my ideal scenario (above) eg where 3 top guys want to race it amongst themselves for the medals and are all of a similar running standard. Anyway, “just” some new handlebars (and a re-wire) will make many of us race-legal and many people I’ve seen in their unusual (but comfortable) upright tri-bar position will find that drops make them MORE aero (IMHO).
Or it could all be a misguided South African April-Fool’s joke…in July.