California Power: Sutherland’s ATOC stage 8 power data

Frank Overton analyzes Rory Sutherland's power data from the final stage of the Amgen Tour of California.

Stage 8: Santa Clarita to Thousand Oaks
Distance: 129.1km (80.2 miles)
Winning time: 3:33:01
Athlete: Rory Sutherland, UnitedHealthcare, 44th place, same time

In stage 8 of Amgen Tour of California Rory Sutherland finished safely in the pack and conserved his 7th place in the general classification. The power data shows us that Sutherland was never put into difficulty and the sprinter’s teams did not ramp up the pace towards the end quite like they did in stages 2 and 3. Nevertheless the Intensity Factor of the stage was 0.8 and I’m sure Sutherland is glad to have finished the entire stage race.

Play by Play:
The pace was brisk for the first 30 minutes while a breakaway formed; Sutherland averaged 284 watts and 354 watts normalized. His heart rate averaged 136bpm but I suspect it was depressed after yesterday’s stage due to fatigue. Once the break was established the field sat up and Sutherland only averaged 206 watts and 253 watts normalized for the next 30 minutes. Heart rate fell to 117bpm which I imagine felt like an enjoyable pace after a long and hard fought stage race.

The peloton did hit it up the category 4 Balcom Canyon climb and Sutherland produced his hardest effort of the stage for 4:22 and 447 watts. Once the field entered into the finishing circuits, the pace and Sutherland’s power out rose. Sutherland averaged 306, 285, 296 and 300 watts on the first four circuits but the final circuit was the hardest at 384 watts for 10 minutes. This was about the same wattage as stage 3’s run into the line but for 20 minutes shorter (stage 3 consisted of close to 30 minutes @ 387 watts).

The Grand Totals:
After 8 stages, Sutherland’s race time was 23 hours 50 minutes and 53 seconds.  During that time he rode for 20,225 kiloJoules and had a training stress score of 1303.7 (does not include stage 2 or stage 6 data). There’s no doubt that Sutherland and the rest of the peloton are tired based power data metrics of that magnitude. I for one am ready for a rest day and all I did was analyze world class power data!

You can view Rory’s interactive race file by clicking the Training Peaks File viewer link:

Power file analysis by Frank Overton, owner of the FasCat Performance Cycling Center in Boulder, Colorado.  Overton analyzed daily Amgen Tour of California race data including daily files provided to by the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team for VeloNews this week.