Dr Hutch: The aesthetics of the 'chest-fairing' is a funny hill to want to die on

The earnest buffoonery of budget aero hacks may rile TT diehards, but Cycling Weekly's columnist salutes the cut-price cunning of their innovations

time triallist with champagne in bottle holder
(Image credit: Future)

It is possible that you don’t keep abreast of UK time trialling news as assiduously as I do. If so, you’re missing an excellent debate that brings together many of the things that are best about cycling – original thinking, sneakiness, vested commercial interests, the laws of physics and, of course, people shouting “Over my dead body!” about all of the above.

The story is about recent aerodynamic hacks. Such as always putting a bottle behind the saddle, even if there’s nothing in it, where it fills in some of the wake behind a rider. Or getting a small gain by putting an energy gel (in its wrapper) on your instep under an overshoe. Or using a chest-fairing under your suit to manipulate air flow round the torso.

Thank you for reading 20 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Michael Hutchinson is a writer, journalist and former professional cyclist. As a rider he won multiple national titles in both Britain and Ireland and competed at the World Championships and the Commonwealth Games. He was a three-time Brompton folding-bike World Champion, and once hit 73 mph riding down a hill in Wales. His Dr Hutch columns appears in every issue of Cycling Weekly magazine