The first Zwift 6Points Mallorca Sunday Training Ride

Every Sunday at 10.40am UTC we are staging a new series of Zwift 6Points Mallorca Training rides. This follows the great success of our Glasgow Green Cycle Club GGCC rides we have been running for two years.

The aim is to showcase 6Points worldwide, and in particular Mallorca, on the rapidly growing Zwift platform for all (open-minded!) cyclists who need, for one reason or another, embracing injury or illness, family or work commitments, weather (not everywhere has such wonderful weather as Mallorca!) predictability and efficiency of time and fitness outcomes, or simply personal preference.

Bryan Visser, founder of 6Points Challenges https://6pointschallenges.com, asked me to deliver on my suggestion of a regular Zwift presence, organising a weekly group ride, led by a “beacon” leader, embracing sprints and a closing mini race as my rides usually do.

The rides are over a variety of seven courses, in rotation, including one or more from all of the Zwift “worlds” – 3 courses from Watopia (a virtual world and the most developed of Zwift’s worlds); Richmond’s UCI race circuit; London, inspired by the Prudential RideLondon 100; Innsbruck UCI race circuit (the InnsbruckRing); and Yorkshire UCI circuit, the most recent of Zwift’s additions.

Yesterday’s ride was over 3 laps Watopia’s Jungle Circuit, and participation numbers exceeded even my own expectations, even knowing, as I do, that most ride bookings come in the last few hours before the ride. But this ride was brand new, and had only been in the Zwift schedule since the Tuesday before. It helps that I am known as an organiser of well-led group rides (the GGCC series, 3 rides, a race and a TT every week on Zwift) and I was able to rely on the support of close friends and backup leaders Steven Smith and David Smith (no relations, one based here is Glasgow, and the other from Erie, Pa in the US).

The numbers were extraordinary for our brand-new 6Points Mallorca ride:

120 booked to ride, of whom 9 were Zwift friends

Once the ride had started, we could see that the start line was pretty busy, and Steven was holding the fort, promising my imminent arrival!

We see at top right here 59 riders on the start line as I joined with 2:24 minutes to go

Since we had the Late Join facility enabled, that allows rides to join up to 1/2 hour later, after 30 minutes we could see that as many as 98 riders has started the ride at some point. In this image we can see that I (with the yellow beacon chevron over me) was “leading” from 41st position in a peloton of 98 who had started before the 30 minute Late Join cut-off.

I should know how to spell “booked”! I was thinking of SA vs. Wales maybe!

The full Zwift Companion results for the ride show 58 finishers altogether, and note that my own watts/kg was 2.5 for the ride, exactly as advertised; 2 to 3 w/kg at a 2.5w/kg average. One has to be careful, as leader beacon, because on flat terrain watts (are a better predictor of speed in the Zwift physics model, and my average was 186w. A lighter rider would have to generate MORE watts to keep up. Downhill heavier riders have even more advantage; lighter riders only get help uphill!

More screenshots from the ride show what a great job Zwift have made of the virtual world imagery for the Jungle Circuit ride. All of their worlds have very high quality game graphics, because Zwift, although a cycling resource, is in “reality” a video game with cyclists at the protagonists! In one of the images, note the red transparent “fence” that keeps riders within (in this case) 5 seconds of the leader beacon, thus enabling a good “blob” peloton – not a “snake” – and fair stats for sprints and the closing minirace to the ride. As you can see, I can choose 2 seconds (rather short in my view), and 10 seconds as well (too long; 5 seconds is my “goldilocks” setting). I turn it off during the sprints and the closing minirace, and after the sprints I choose 10 seconds, and then back to 5. Riders get 60 seconds, if beyond the fence, to slow down and return to the peloton. As you can see, 2 have been removed – “zapped” – by the fence. They can continue to ride, but aren’t formally in our group any longer and aren’t in the results, unless we are inside 30 minutes, in which case they can stop and re-join.

Setting up this ride for 6Points Mallorca, and leading the first ride, with its very high participation numbers, has been a pleasure and I look forward to growth of the series over the coming months, and its demonstration to the 6Points Mallorca sponsors and Mallorca authorities (who also support 6Points Challenges) that 6Points has world-wide reach, and can, and does attract tourism to Mallorca from all parts of the world. Nationalites of our Zwift riders yesterday spanned all hemispheres – Europe, the Americas and Asia-Pacific, as can be see from the nation flags on this ZwiftPower results list

ZwiftPower results for ZP registered riders

Sobremunt, the hardest climb in Mallorca

A new video with more action from my GoPro Session, and music from David Guerra. It’s 18 minutes, but I hope you can spare the time to take a look!

A newly created iMovie version of my Sobremunt GoPro and iPhone material

A day out achieving a recent ambition, to climb Sobremunt, Es Verger, generally accepted as the hardest climb in Mallorca, particularly from the south side. On the descent, I took in lunch at Esporles, and then climbed Es Grau and Galilea (with the usual coke, coffee and Magnum stop at Café Sa Plaça!) and completed the loop down to Es Capdella back to Costa de la Calma. A lovely ride with terrific views as you will see from the video collage.

At the top of the Strava segment of Sobremunt
Tom Last and the boys at GCN went up there too!
I really did go up to the same place as Tom Last of GCN!

The Climb, Tak Ma Doon Road Oct 2016

Climbing Tak Ma Doon Road from Kilsyth with Glasgow Green Cycle Club. The Tak is one of the hardest climbs in the area, especially from the Kilsyth (south) side. The descent on the other side crosses a ford, which needs some care. The climb turned into a little competition with Paul and Colin, who thoughtfully paused at the ford on the way down to make sure everyone was OK.

Climbing Tak Ma Doon Road with GGCC

Ride the 6Points Mallorca in May 2020!

May 15/16/17th 2020 is only 6 months away!

What a way to celebrate the onset of summer and enjoy 3 days of fantastic riding in the sun and see whole perimeter of the beautiful island of Mallorca.

We will go to some great restaurants and hotels and you will also enjoy the signature camaraderie of all 6Points events.

Get your Registration in now at https://6pointschallenges.com/sign-up-to-6points-mallorca-2020/

Weʼre raising funds to help children’s charities on Mallorca. 6Points Cycling Challenges has raised over £66,000 in 3 years, and our work continues. Please support us at https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/bryan-visser-4

You can enjoy this taster weekend on Mallorca on 15/16/17th May 2020 as part of a whole week of cycling (as I am again!) doing some of the other climbs mentioned and shown in my blog such as Sobremunt (the hardest climb in Mallorca), Port Valdemossa, Port Canonge, Col de Soller, Orient, Cold de sa Bataia and/or many others.

You can fly out to Mallorca on Tuesday 12th May, and return on Tuesday evening 19th May by EasyJet, having ridden the Big Daddy Ma10 across northern Mallorca (100+ miles) on Friday 15th, 115kms on Saturday 16th May from Port Pollensa (via Cap Formentor) to Cala Millor, and from there back to Santa Ponsa (100 miles again) on Sunday 17th, with two wonderful hotel nights and dinners.

Anyone who wants to take my approach of going for the week, Tuesday to Tuesday to Mallorca is welcome to let me know, and keep me company, either side of the 440kms weekend (with the odd 7500m of climbing).

You can’t have missed that I did the Mallorca 6Points in May this year and it was a brilliantly organised event; more riders (up from 50 to around 75) will be coming next time, and there might even be a partners’ programme to allow families to enjoy the sights.

My rider view of the 6Points Mallorca in May 2019

This event in May 2020 offers a perfect taster for the year: wonderful spring cycling weather in the Balearics; very easy travel to and from this popular cycling destination; and very cycling friendly roads, cafés and people.