PRO CYCLING MANAGER 2013 GUIDE

3D race - Manage your riders
Start of the race: group your team
At the start of the race, the members of your team will be dispersed throughout the peloton. We recommend that you group your main riders in the first quarter of the peloton using the reduced "free effort" cursor, depending on the terrain and the speed of the group. Each of your riders will gradually move up the peloton and, when a rider is well placed, use "maintain position" to keep him in this position and wait for the others to catch up.

Then use "maintain position" again for the other riders until all the team members are in a group.

Note: it is not necessary to be at the front of the peloton at the start of the race, as your riders will become tired needlessly. The aim is to be well placed to ensure you can implement your strategy and to be protected from the wind.
Manage effort
It is important to manage your riders’ effort levels, especially the team leader and/or sprinter, who must have as much energy as possible for the last few kilometres before the finishing line if they hope to win the race.

Note: if a rider exerts strenuous efforts every day, he will have less energy at the start of the next stages.
  • • The wind is one of the most important factors to monitor regularly, both its direction and strength. (In the game options, you can uncheck the "Do not display the windsock’ to view the wind strength and direction above a selected rider).

  • • Negative aspect: a head wind or a side wind will tire your riders out more quickly. Try to protect yourself from the wind by tucking in behind other riders and stay in the peloton to gain maximum protection from the wind.

  • • Positive aspect: if there is a tail wind, there is no need to protect yourself and it may be a good time to attack.
Note : wind has less influence during climbs than on flat terrain.

When maintaining your position in the peloton, you will see the effort indicator flash red for one or more of your riders. This indicates that the effort you have assigned to your riders for maintaining their position is insufficient. Raise the effort cursor gradually until the flashing stops to ensure you don’t lag behind while expending a minimum amount of effort.

Note : depending on the situation, you may choose not to accelerate to save your riders' energy.

Managing effort also means providing supplies: managing water. If one of your riders has run out of water (the indicator flashes), he will become tired very quickly. To avoid this, make sure you provide supplies at the right time i.e. when he is getting low on water or before arduous sections, because it will be difficult to provide supplies when the group accelerates.

Note: you can provide supplies as often as you like up to 10 kilometres from the finishing line.

Your team riders are responsible for providing supplies, so make sure you don’t tire them out by making go back and forth too many times for supplies.
Attack and counter-attack
You will have to react to attacks from other riders or launch attacks to break away.

You must choose the rider(s) and the right time to act and therefore take account of the terrain and the aptitudes of your riders. It may be useful to check your riders’ daily fitness indicator to help you choose the right cyclist.
In reality, a rider’s fitness levels go through cycles that depend on his training and fatigue levels; but there are also daily random fluctuations within these cycles. In Pro Cycling Manager fitness is also influenced by these factors, and daily fitness is indicated by the white square to the right of each rider box. The rider won’t immediately know what his daily fitness level will be at the start of a stage, so he must test himself and expend efforts to find out. This mechanism also exists in the game and the indicators are divided into 3 periods.
In reality, a rider’s fitness levels go through cycles that depend on his training and fatigue levels; but there are also daily random fluctuations within these cycles. In Pro Cycling Manager fitness is also influenced by these factors, and daily fitness is indicated by the white square to the right of each rider box. The rider won’t immediately know what his daily fitness level will be at the start of a stage, so he must test himself and expend efforts to find out. This mechanism also exists in the game and the indicators are divided into 3 periods.
In the first phase, the square contains an arrow that shows his first impressions. In the second phase, the cyclist has a more accurate appraisal of his fitness and a number value appears, but this value is still approximate and may change. In the final phase, the number value is accurate, as the cyclist has been able to determine his fitness level for that day. The time taken to pass from one phase to the next varies depending on the rider’s efforts; the more efforts demanded of your rider, the more quickly he will be able to confirm his fitness level!

The day’s fitness indicator goes from -5 to +5. If one of your riders has a fitness level of +5 for the day, he will perform much better and it may be worth using him to launch a breakaway attack, especially if he is well placed towards the front and the wind is in his favour. Once he is on his own, stop the attack to return to a pace that conserves more energy. On the other hand, if you can’t break away, don’t keep trying for too long or you will tire the rider unnecessarily.

Note: the effort indicator is greyed out during an attack or a counter-attack to denote that it is not being taken into account. The attack and counter-attack let the rider momentarily go beyond the basic effort level at the expense of his energy level. Once the attack or counter-attack has finished, the rider will return to the effort level that was set previously.

You may see other riders moving into an attack position and you can exploit this move to launch a counter-attack. First, right-click to select the breakaway and then select the Counter-attack button and your currently selected rider will go off in pursuit. A counter-attack allows the rider to conserve some energy compared to the attack, particularly if the counter-attacker is close to the attacker.

Note : for attacks that take place at the start of the race, if a rider is judged to be too dangerous or if the breakaway group has too many riders, the peloton will push hard to get back.

The leaders’ team mates generally perform this task and, before attacking, it is a good idea to analyse the strength of the team mates likely to be riding behind, particularly on climbs where they cannot rest in the relays.
End of a flat race: form a train for the final sprint
The end of the race is near, and it’s time to prepare for the final sprint of the stage. Most important: don’t forget to take on supplies before the last 10 kilometres, because if you have no water at this point, your chances of winning will be virtually nil.

You can use your sprinter to either follow a train or form your own train to conserve as much energy as possible before the final sprint. To form a train, the weakest rider should be placed at the front using fairly high free effort. Then use the follow function with the other riders in order of their strength up to the sprinter (see diagram below). The rider at the head of the train is only the weakest in the train, not necessarily in the team, and you needn’t form the train using every rider in the team.
Once the train has been formed, the head of the train will lead his group as far as he can as quickly as possible. After a while, he will have run out of energy, so make him leave the train and assign the next rider free effort and select him as the new head of the train. As each new replacement rider is stronger, the train will accelerate when a new rider moves to the front. The rider just in front of the sprinter is the lead-out rider or "pilot fish", who must also be a good sprinter. At the end, and before the last kilometre from the end, the sprinter will be alone with maximum energy and very high speed, so click on sprint to try and cross the finishing line in front. It is also advisable to make the last leader of the train sprint to try and place 2 riders on the podium.
End of a mountain race: take your leader to victory
Forming a "train" won’t work here, and you will have to organise your team differently to take your leader to victory.

Consider bringing your best climbers to the front of the peloton several kilometres before the final climb. Once in position, protect your leader and your best climber with your other riders at the front of the peloton. When you are at the foot of the col, your best climber should lead the group exerting a strong enough effort to remain in front. Your leader must conserve his energy by positioning himself in the climber’s draft. Remember to use your "gel" to enable your climber to maintain a higher pace to tire out the other riders in the group. Your leader must follow in his draft and prepare to attack. When your climber is exhausted, you then launch an attack with your leader. Manage his effort efficiently once he has broken away from the group so he remains out in front and can keep going right up to the finishing line.

It is important to ensure that your riders have a good supply of water to help them maintain performance during the tough sections. Remember to replenish their supply prior to difficult periods and don’t wait until the final climb to fetch the water bottles!
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