Sean Kelly’s Tips and Advice for Better Peloton Riding
Ride in a Group and Cycle Further and Faster for Less Effort!
Peloton riding is used both as a training aid and a tactical instrument in professional road cycling. The idea is that by riding in a group, you shield each other from the wind. Estimates state that a cyclist will save up to 30% of their energy by riding in a peloton.
If you cycle with us on our Mallorca Cycle Training tour, we will teach you how to ride effectively in a group. Our training programme was put together by our experienced, professional cycling coach, Martin, and cycling legend Sean Kelly. If you ride with us in April or October, you could well find yourself riding in a peloton with the legend.
So what are Sean Kelly’s thoughts about riding in a peloton?
To ride well in a peloton it is important to build fitness. Sean Kelly places a high emphasis on fitness and warns of the dangers of a lack of training in the cold months.
“If you cut off training for four or five months, it’s so difficult to get back to the level you were at in the summer. The message is simple, keep on doing something; be it spinning classes, something on the turbo and then maybe just do something (on the road) at the weekend as well.
“Obviously work and the weather can make that hard, but if you can get out once on the weekend and do a bike ride during the winter it will really stand to you.
“I think a lot of people make the mistake where they just finish cycling after the last sportive of the year – the Tour of Waterford, or the Rebel Tour in Cork or whatever.
“They just stop after it and take out their bikes again in March. That is not a good thing to do.”
Speaking in 2014 on the Tour de France, he highlighted that Peter Sagan’s issues were in part down to the tactics of his team, and in particular peloton use:
“I think he needs one or two riders of his team in the final to help him control things. However the problem is that when his team rides all day behind the break to keep the break’s advantage to the minimum, then in the end he is going to be isolated.”
How can I Ride better in a Peloton?
Peloton riding requires discipline and awareness of what is going on around you. Here are some tips to guide you to be a good peloton rider:
- Focus on the riders around you and avoid sudden swerving or braking. This could cause an accident should you do this
- If you are finding it hard to maintain the pace in the peloton signal to riders around you and when it is safe to do so drop back
- If you are riding competitively or with unknown riders be especially vigilant. You may know how to ride in a group but they may not
- Ensure you take your turn leading the group. At these times maintain the current pace and try and lead the group away from hazards
- If you are a stronger rider, try and protect the weaker riders as much as you can
If you want to perfect your group riding skills then join us in Mallorca. Our Mallorca Cycle Training Tour will teach you the essential skills of group riding, and you will soon find yourself riding further and faster for less effort.