What is Zwift Racing Score Like?
What is Zwift Racing Score Like?

What is Zwift Racing Score Like?

Zwift Racing Score was released as a pilot test last week for selected races of this month’s zRacing series. It’s seeded using 30s and 10 minute power data and thereafter uses results to adjust your ranking score. My rounded initial score was 540 so I jumped into a race at 0910 on Thursday 4th July.

Race 1. RGV group 400-575

It was fairly hard going in a large bunch on a flat course. As a light rider I expected this to be hard work and it was. Since this group is 400-575 and I was 540 going into it, I expected to do fairly well. In the Zwift stats I was 10th of 49, receiving +6 (to 545) for my 10th place finish. I did mess up slightly by throwing away my PU erroneously a few km from the end. It probably cost me a few places in the sprint, but meh!

Race 2: RGV Again

I thought I’d try again the next day as the weather outside was crap. I went for the 1210 slot this time. 0910 is a bit early. This race went well until the final 220m when something odd happened on the screen during my sprint. I was expecting to get 4th or 5th but ended up with 9th of 44 riders. Never mind. I got myself another +6, so we’re up to 551 now…

9th and 10th. +6 both times. It’s starting to look like you get a fixed increment according to finish position. But we need more data to see. A few people have higher changes but they might be due to increased power seeding scores. Not sure. If there is a factor for “who you beat” it doesn’t seem to be nearly as influential as your finish position.

Tiny Races

So the next day the weather was still horrid. Another indoor day. Tiny Races! I was expecting to bug out after two and nearly did. But I hung around for one more.

These were also great fun. Very intense and very competitive. Also very busy. Race 1 was one lap of Neokyo Crit. I managed to snatch 22nd place of 111 riders, netting me +4 (up to 555). It looked like most of the riders between 15th and 30th all got +4 with a few exceptions.

Tiny Race 1

Race 2 was 3 laps of Downtown Dolphin, where I snagged 20th place of 94 riders, netting +4 (to 559). See a pattern emerging here?

Race 3 was lead-in plus 1 lap of LaGuardia Loop Reverse. I finished 21st of 96, netting me +4 (to 563).

Then on Sunday I rested

24 hours after my previous race, my ZRS rating “decayed” from 563.01 to 562.54. I looked into this and it is a built-in thing that your ZRS will reduce by about 0.5 on days when you don’t race a ZRS race. (But this is going to be changed soon.)

Week 2, Test Race 6. zRacing Casse-Pattes

After trying out several flat races last week I was looking forward to something with a hill in it. The theory being that if it was really hard for me on the flat, those guys should suffer on a 6 minute climb and I should do a bit better. Maybe not as well as the really light guys, but certainly better than the 85kg+ ones with the same ZRS. It was a good race. Very hard I finished 12th of 61, receiving +5 (to 568 rounded – 567.92 exact on ZP on 8th July). This time I didn’t do anything too stupid – although with hindsight I think I should have deployed my feather on the 3rd steep section of Petit KoM and not the 4th. There’s a chance it would have worked better, but I’ll never know for sure.


Some people have said that heavier riders might be overrated. I’m less sure about this but time will tell. What is sure is that lighter riders of similar rating should find flat races harder and perform better on those with a bit more climb.

It looks to me as if your finish position decides your rating change a lot more than any influence of the “quality” of the people you beat. If I beat someone with a much higher rating I’d like to get more credit for it (perhaps that’s just because I’ve become accustomed to vELO and it works?) That doesn’t seem to happen in ZRS. Or if it is happening, it’s hard to spot.

The main thing I’d like to see changed is an increase in the volatility. The changes seem rather small if a winner only gets +10. It could potentially take many races to get promoted to where you really ought to be. Increasing this should be seriously considered.

But most importantly of all, I’ve done six races and had immense fun. I haven’t won any of them or even podiumed (although arguably I might have got close if I hadn’t messed up the two RGV races?) But it was great fun. Almost as much fun as DRS – and that’s really saying something. This system has promise. We’re only a week into it, so it will be very interesting to see where it goes from here.

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