Garmin-Sharp sports science director Robby Ketchell said that Garmin Connect technology has revolutionized how he does his job. As the person responsible for applying science to how the team’s riders race and train, the ability to collect, view, and analyze rider power output data both in time frames as short as a 30-minute time trial and as long as over years of racing, helps him ground his subjective evaluations of rider fitness.
At this year’s Giro d’Italia, Ketchell said he uses Garmin Connect every day to “Look at all the analytics for the stage. We look at different riders, how much energy they are spending per stage, the total amount of calories that they expend, how efficient they are, and how it compares to other riders on the team.” That information in turn affects what sort of directions the riders get off the bike: “If somebody is doing a lot of work one day, they need to eat more, or they may also need more recovery in upcoming days.”
Ketchell said Garmin Connect also provides insights on how much work riders are doing inside the peloton—something that is difficult for a team director to assess from the perspective of a car driving far behind the race action. It reveals “how efficient somebody really is being in the peloton when they are supposed to be recovering or sitting in,” Ketchell noted. In other words, the Garmin invention opens a window on how well a rider is doing their job of not racing hard on days when they are supposed to be recovering from earlier efforts.
Ketchell also said having access to data from the riders’ Garmin Edge bike computers in real time allows the team to modify a riders’ plan of attack on the fly. “Some guys that look good in longer stages with climbs later in the stage, you may want to redirect how you use certain riders based on the data that you get back. We use the Garmin Connect as the means to visualize all that.”
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Garmin Connect– Helping To Revolutionize Cycling