Standby for disruption!
You may have strapped yourself firmly and contractually to one indoor cycling platform mentally betting on that your chosen platform will be THE platform for eSports racing. However, watch-out! eSports for virtual cycling is getting serious and serious outside of Zwift. We have already heard of commentators and cyclists who are unable to get involved in the headline races happening elsewhere.
Why race on a virtual platform anyway?
Well, you can travel around you home country racing and spending money on gear, racing fees and hotels. You might win, say, £400 over a year. With eSports and cycling, you can win £400 in one race and you never leave home! All you need are super accurate weighing scales, a decent smart trainer including two power meter sources that are accurate. You will also need something to connect to – e.g. a gaming PC and monitor and don’t forget the big fans!
Chasing Pixels is becoming super exciting and not on Zwift
A typical example of how eSports and cycling is becoming a serious affair is on two platforms. MyWhoosh is one and RGT Cycling the other. You may not have heard of MyWhoosh yet, or you’ve tried it and thought ‘it looks like Zwift without all the people.’ Watch-out, already they are paying big money prizes for their Friday races and for the Autumn/Fall MyWhoosh promise to appear with a compelling offering for those who adore bells, whistles and lots of other riders.
Echelon Racing League
RGT are arguably a step ahead of everyone else with their pack dynamics – rarely does anyone say ‘this doesn’t feel like real life.’ RGT may not have the social group sizes of Zwift and alike and it’s almost as if it’s the best product out there that not enough people know about!
Coming soon is a major new eSports/eRacing series on RGT and this comes from the super-series Echelon Racing League – real life race promotors, promoting top-class races on RGT. If you’ve not yet experienced racing on RGT you are in for a treat. On Zwift, what you see isn’t what others see on their screen, it’s close and in a race you can pass the line first and not be first at the server end. On RGT everyone sees everyone in the right place. If you win, you win (your own personal data accuracy aside)!
You can find all of the details for the Echelon League here and it’s amazing to watch! And there is prize money!!
New Kids on the Block
No doubt that MyWhoosh will also crack this and users of RGT will report on the stability of wifi signal that’s needed to get RGT to work. The demands on the virtual cyclist to enable competition on platforms other than Zwift means spending decent sums of money on broadband and using ethernet cables and not wifi to connect and then, still having decent wifi for (in the case of RGT) the companion style app. For serious races, the cost should be affordable, based on the savings elsewhere – surely?
One last new platform for you – the forever in beta VirtuPro (it was Veloton). Things are happening there. Currently, the bot racing is a simulation of a World Tour race and your own bots are teammates – it’s compelling stuff and they will soon go real-life multiplayer. This one may come left of field and impress!
Can you really watch a live-streamed race on Zwift?
And Zwift is the tried, trusted and plug and play platform that so many of us know and love. It’s so easy not to try anything else. You may be missing out and especially if you are a pro level cyclist – considering the cycling dynamics and race winnings elsewhere.
Then there is also the live-streaming revenue. For what reason would you even live-stream something that viewers cannot trust what they see – back to what we covered above.
A Challenge for You
If you are a serious racer, try the new platforms and let us know what you experience on them. Early reports are such comments as ‘I used to get dropped at the line on Zwift A races. In real life, I’m a competitive crit racer and on RGT and MyWhoosh, I’m up there at the pointy end.’ Please let us know.