For this evening’s ride I took on RGT Cycling‘s Canary Wharf map.
This is a very short map – just 1km – with a sprint, and very little climb. I think the climb is 5m per lap?
The sprint isn’t flat, however. It starts flat, dips, and then finishes up a slight incline.
Straight away, the most obvious thing about this map are the visuals.
These graphics are probably the best I have seen, so far, in a virtual cycling simulator.
The Canary Wharf map was what I saw of RGT Cycling when I first saw it (on YouTube I think), and whilst he Pienza map wasn’t super details, the Canary Wharf map felt really polished. That said, at only 1km and very enclosed, I guess it really should.
As a slight side note, my frames per second never dropped below 50, and I averaged 59fps pretty much throughout. This is on a PC with a Nvidia GTX 970, so nothing spectacular. This was on highest graphics settings, as far as I am aware.
The map, at just 1km is short.
It’s a rectangular loop, starting under a bridge, with a sudden sharp 5% gradient climb. This levels off to the first bend – which as mentioned in my RGT Cycling review, will enforce a bit of braking.
The bend takes you onto a very short second section, into the second corner.
After this we hit the sprint straight. This is signaled in several ways:
- With a leaderboard
- A HUD countdown to the start of the sprint
- A sprint start arch – Strava sponsored.
More on that in a minute.
The sprint is the obvious focal point of the map.
It was during the sprint section that I noticed the most detail, and also the most FPS drop – again, down from about 59fps average to about 51fps average each lap. Nothing major, but the detail is higher here, and ideally you’re moving faster 🙂
After each sprint, a PR is displayed – if you achieve one – along with live rankings, and how far you are off the all time pace.
I gave myself a good few laps of warm up before I put in my first (and likely best) attempt of the day.
A really nice feature of RGT Cycling is the lap timers.
After every loop I was told my lap time. It might be nice to show previous laps, average lap times, fastest laps… stuff like that.
Even so, a lap time alone is better than nothing.
Some quick maths told me 2 minute laps meant 30 laps would have me on for an hour.
That was enough of a mental goal to want to beat the hour mark to hit 30km.
5 laps in, I went for it on the sprint.
19.461 was good enough for first for a good long while.
And back to the Strava thing – the sprint segment is heavily Strava sponsored, but when I went to Strava to check the leaderboards / see all my laps:
In case the fail isn’t jumping out at you:
Short Sprint (actual short sprint too short Strava :/
So… yeah. Lol. I’m guessing that’s why my time is 23seconds there. Oh well.
It seemed as though this circuit had other real riders online riding with me
Unfortunately I don’t know how to communicate in game, so I couldn’t talk to anyone. And no one else was talking.
I thought they were all humans, but some of them acted strangely. Some of them kept logging in, doing a lap, and then logging out, rinse, and repeat. Kinda weird.
As there were other riders around, I tried to test out the drafting functionality.
For me, gearing is a little more necessary in this game (I use the term loosely) than in Zwift.
Minor slopes demand gear changes, or things get very spinny, very fast. Likewise, up hill climbs seem more noticeable. Maybe it’s just me.
No complaints here, it’s just I found it difficult to draft other riders as again, I think clever gearing is involved – and I’m no master of it.
I must admit, after a while – about 30 minutes or so – I started to get a little bored.
The circuit is really nice, but at just 1km it felt very repetitive.
I kinda wished it had been 2km or so, just enough to keep things different enough, you know?
For the last 15 laps I set about simply trying to maintain a steady pace. Infrequently I’d take an easy lap, and then try and put in at least 2 or 3 laps at a higher intensity.
Knowing that each lap was only 1km meant that it was easy to figure out exactly how long I had left to go. The stats provided by RGT Cycling on this front surpass Zwift for sure.
Towards the end of my laps I lose my sprint ranking to Miro M. Fair play. There was no way I was going to get close to 17 seconds on tired legs. Or even fairly fresh legs to be fair.
Overall I enjoyed this map.
I’d definitely ride it again in future.
As far as it being fairly flat, it was a decent “easy” ride. The sprint kinda forced me to push myself, and if anything, I think I went too hard too soon. 5km in probably wasn’t a smart move to start my sprinting attempts. Maybe 10km would have been better. Very difficult to refrain with all the prompting though.
After the ride I checked out my summary using the app. I think a bit more data would be useful here. Were these times in lap order, or just ad-hoc? Who knows.
Definitely the post ride screens need a little love and care. The info is good, but there isn’t much of it.
Finally, after I’d figured out how to exit my ride I was back to the Live Activities screen. This is pretty cool, but as mentioned in my RGT Cycling review, will become less useful as more people get involved.
And get involved you should.
For the price (it’s free at the moment), this is really, honestly worth checking out.
Just make sure you hook it up to Strava if you care anything about stats.