When Cycling and Sailing Converge: A Unique Intersection on Way to America’s Cup

In a unique fusion of athleticism and innovation, former professional cyclist Ben Day is seeking to revolutionize yacht racing in pursuit of the prestigious 37th America’s Cup, which is set to take place Aug. 22 through Oct. 20.


Transitioning from the world of cycling to the high-stakes realm of competitive sailing, Day is attempting to spearhead a new era in which cyclists become “cyclors,” harnessing their raw power to propel F1-style yachts to victory.


Day is a guest on season five of the podcast CoachCast. In episode eight, he delves into the physical demands and strategic implications of this groundbreaking approach. As head performance coach of the American Magic team, Day sheds light on the evolution of cyclors and their pivotal role in modern yacht racing.


Unlike traditional arm grinders, cyclors utilize their lower-body strength to generate 30-40% more power, enabling them to finely manipulate sail shapes and optimize boat performance. With the shifting dynamics of the America’s Cup rules, the significance of cyclists and their physical abilities has come to the forefront.


Central to Day’s philosophy is the emphasis on absolute power over the conventional metric of watts per kilogram. In the quest for victory, cyclists must churn out staggering wattages, with benchmarks set at over 1,000 watts for 30 seconds, 540 watts for four minutes and 440-450 watts for sustained efforts of 20 minutes.


Day and his team employ state-of-the-art technology, including Quarq power meters and Hammerhead head units, to gather and analyze data in real-time. With telemetry streaming from each cyclor on board, the intricate dance of power fluctuations and strategic maneuvers is meticulously tracked and interpreted.


Reflecting on the journey ahead, Day underscores the relentless pursuit of absolute power as the ultimate goal. In a sport where milliseconds can mean the difference between triumph and defeat, every watt counts in the pursuit of hoisting the oldest international trophy in sports.


For more information on Day and his business, Day by Day Coaching, please visit 

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