Josh Talks With Cycling Icon Damon Rinard

Damon Rinard has been at Cannondale as Engineering Manager for the past five years, but has been immersing himself in bike tech for the better part of three decades. In this episode, Josh and Damon completely nerd out over their shared love of all things technical.

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One thought on “Josh Talks With Cycling Icon Damon Rinard

  1. This episode was tremendously entertaining. The stories are great, and the insight about higher variance measurements in the tunnel for upright torsos made me think.

    People often think of the difference between an aero bike and a non-aero bike, or between latex and butyl tubes, as a couple of watts — so they dismiss the difference as negligible. Races are a series of punctuated crises, not a steady state equilibrium, so the difference shouldn’t be measured in the average number of watts saved but in how many times you can stay attached when someone surges and tries to split the group. Each crisis is a bifurcation point, where something gets decided and fates fork in different directions. If you get dropped that’s one fate; if you manage to stick, there’s a period of relative calm until the next crisis. Like Damon, on a steep hill I’m dropped pretty quickly; but a lot of other crises only last 20 seconds, and a handful of extra Joules would keep me on. On an aero bike, or with low Crr, I’ve been conserving W’ so I can spend it when I need it, the rubber band stretches but it doesn’t break, I cross the gap, and live for another lap. Even if an aero bike or good tires/tubes didn’t save me that whole handful, they let me go a tiny bit easier during the calm before the storm so I can replenish a bit of W’. Drag reduction is critical for guys like me because our realistic goal is to survive as many bifurcation points as possible before getting forked. Eventually the rubber band snaps and I get dropped but it shortens the ITT at the end. And an aero bike and low Crr helps there, too.

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