The Hell Ride is a popular group ride run every Saturday morning in Melbourne. It starts at the town of Black Rock and follows the coast for 30 km before looping back and finishing with a sprint. Between 100 and 200 riders attend, rain or shine.
With the 2020 lockdown, group rides are not allowed, so our friends at Zwift created a Hell Ride substitute.
There is no rider limit, no traffic lights, no traffic and no risk of getting a puncture.
How to join the Hell Ride
You'll need a Zwift account and a stationary bike set up.
Download the Zwift Companion phone App
Search for Hell Ride in Zwift Companion, then click a green tick to say you're joining it
The ride can be found here: https://www.zwift.com/events/view/535796
On Saturday morning, log in to Zwift and start warming up. At 7.55am or so, Zwift will automatically transport you to the start line of the Hell Ride. If you are late, you may join the ride in progress for up to 20 minutes (but won’t feature in the results).
To be listed in any Zwift results page you need to sign up to zwiftpower.com
1) log in to zwift.com, top right is a little circle with the user picture. click that and choose settings/profile from the drop down. Then on the menu choose connections. Scroll down till you see Zwiftpower, and click "opt in".
2) find your Zwift id. e.g. 9123 https://zwiftinsider.com/find-zwift-id/
3) Go to zwiftpower.com and set up an account. You'll be given a 4 digit number e.g. 1234 which you have to add to your surname to allow zwiftpower to link you. Once you are linked you can remove the number.
Instructions are on the Zwiftpower website as you follow the sign up process.
ZWIFT Performance Tips
Zwift performance tips from the Zwift Hell Ride ride leader Jesse Riley, Australian 2019 - 2020 e-racing champion:
- Set 3sec average power, it makes it easier.
- Use power meter, not trainer power to avoid drivetrain losses.
- Trainers and rollers can be way out - either reading too high or low.
- Don't lose contact with the group as chasing on is very tough.
- Ensure adequate cooling, ie fans, windows open.
- Get drinks, food and towel ready before event starts.
- Log in 20min before event (don’t log in the night before as an inactive log in might cause Zwift to freeze).
- Perform a trainer calibration/spin down every week or two.
- Keep your van and feather powerups for the finish unless there are multiple laps. Powerups refresh each lap. The feather helps you go up hill easier (-9.5kg for 15s). The van gives 50% more draft for 30s. The draft only works if you are behind another rider and is most effective when going fast. Less commonly seen are the helmet which reduces drag for 15s and the Burrito which makes you undraftable for 10s.
- Check out the competition during the ride by looking on Zwiftpower.com as you ride.
- Just before the start, power up to a good power so when released you will be at the front.
Thanks to everyone who participated in the first Zwift Hell Ride. Tell your friends and we look forward to seeing you all again this Saturday morning!