According to a report in The Times, Team GB track cyclists are hopeful that a revolutionary new skinsuit will help them break world records during the Olympics. It is being reported that the suits have helped shave as much as three seconds off men’s team pursuit times.
The new design is said to feature raised, ribbed strips that redirect air flow, improving efficiency.
In 2013, British Cycling’s ‘Secret Squirrel Club’ filed a patent for drag-reducing clothing. The designs featured 3mm raised chevrons made from moulded plastic placed 50mm apart on the rear of the arms and legs, pointing upwards.
The patent claimed that air flows up the arms and legs, contributing to a large proportion of the overall drag on the rider. By disrupting this airflow with raised dams, the aerodynamic performance is supposed to be improved.
The men’s team pursuit quartet is reported have broken the world record three times during training while wearing the new suits. The record in the women’s team pursuit is also said to have been broken.