Low Aerodynamic Drag Suit for Cycling - Design and Testing
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The focus on garment aerodynamics is increasing in high velocity sports where aerodynamics are crucial such as cycling, speed skating and alpine skiing. Recently published research show that a low drag suit manipulating the flow around the body can enhance an athlete s performance considerably. This project seeks to improve the Norwegian sportswear manufacturer Trimtex Sport AS pro cycling kit using the best currently available textiles. Changes from the original design are made with the intention of optimizing fabric zones and seam placement. Drag measurements on cylinder models, cyclists and full-scale mannequins of the upper and lower body were conducted in wind tunnels. The reductions in aerodynamic drag were significant on cylinders, and a final drag reduction of 8 watts was obtained on the jersey and 5 watts on the bib shorts for a cyclist racing at 50 km/h.