Lucianotes: Chasing the Tron Bike

Lucianotes: Chasing the Tron Bike

Yesterday during the post-race debrief, one of my teammates mentioned that those owning the Tron bike had a clear advantage over the others in this race.

It reminded me that one of the major quests in Zwift is to get the Tron bike, unlocking when you reach 50,000 meters elevation gain. It reminded me also of my journey to get it.

Spoiler alert: yes it is good looking, but the thing does not even show when you are drafting.

I was progressing regularly towards the 50km goal. I was not asking those who already had the Tron bike any questions because the only question I had was such a silly one I was embarrassed to ask: I hate yellow. I was terrified of the idea that you are automatically assigned a Tron bike of a certain color that you cannot change and mine would be yellow.

27km elevation down the line, during a social ride, a teammate explains on Discord that he is super upset since he reached 50km elevation but the Tron bike did not unlock. That he wrote to Zwift support to get it solved but did not get an answer yet. He was counting on getting the Tron for the following race, what a disgrace…

That’s when another participant to the channel asks him if he has activated the Everest challenge on the menu page.

The guy says what the heck is the Everest challenge?

You need to activate it otherwise the elevation does not count.

Obviously the first guy, at this very same moment, was very close to triggering the Japanese seppuku ritual to end his life while looking at the sunset from the antenna tower on the top of the Watopia Epic KOM.

And you have no choice but to make fun of him. How dumb is he, right? He did not activate the Everest challenge… how dumb, right?

For a second you are just in denial. You try as hard as you can to create a parallel universe, an alternate reality in which four months ago, the first day you joined Zwift, you activated the Everest challenge.

But your neurons are rather efficient at connecting to the fact that you did not…. yes my friend. You did not activate the Everest challenge either. So your hard-earned 27km elevation count for nothing, rien in French, nada in Spanish, zero in the three languages…

Despite the universal truth hitting you back, desperately you run to log on Zwift praying that your niece, one day while trying to launch Netflix on your device, mistakenly entered Zwift and has activated the challenge. For sure it is a possibility. I would even say it is very probable that this occurred. More crazy things have happened to you in life than an 11 year old girl guessing by mistake and in the first attempt your 16-bit encrypted password then activating the one amongst several challenges which would make your 27km count.

This should have also happened metaphysically, in the first sense of the word, meaning without any physical contact, since your niece was confined in her place and you were confined in yours for the last five months.

You login and go to the Everest challenge, it says 0m elevation. The End. Game over.

Your entire life is ruined. Nothing could ever make sense again. You feel the same way you felt the day you forgot your Woody and Buzz Lightyear action figures in the park and never saw them again.

Life will never ever be the same. You curse for three hours and swear you will never ever make a single meter of elevation again.

One week later, in the bottom of your heart, a little sparkle starts to grow into a flame. You never ever surrendered. It will not be the case with the Tron Bike!!! The reputation of your entire family name goes into it!

You log into Zwift, activate the Everest Challenge and a few months and thousand kilometers later BANG!!!!!! Your Tron bike is unlocked.

You immediately open the garage and equip, go back and check which map is most crowded at the moment in order to showcase at least 50,000 others your brand-new Tron bike customized in shining blue. You expect a rain of Ride Ons which will never come. But you don’t care, for a day you are the king of the world.

PS: whenever there is a new guy on Zwift mentioning his quest to get the Tron bike, I make sure I never tell him about the Everest Challenge activation thingy. There is not a single reason in the world why I should have been screwed and others are not. 😜

About The Author

Luciano Pollastri

Luciano is a French-Argentinian living in Madrid, Spain. He landed by mistake on Zwift in March 2020, and, according to his wife, staying there because of some strange variant of the Stockholm Syndrom yet to be diagnosed. Passionate about all the little things making us feel alive and together when being part of a team.

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Funkster
Funkster
6 months ago

Great story! I was level 21 when I activated it… I somehow convinced myself I had read that I needed to be at level 20 before you could pursue it. That was definitely funny and sad. Years later, I don’t even change bikes save for the jungle (mtn bike) now. Yes, the tarmac pro with my lightweight’s is supposedly faster but I’ll be darned if every time I ride the alpe or the Ven-top, I NEVER ride it as well as I do on the Tron. Undoubtedly it’s a coincidental fitness-form thing and not the bike but it just goes… Read more »

Douglas A Sottoway
Douglas A Sottoway
6 months ago

Hilarious and true! Don’t tell, I’m suffering the same pain after 1 year of Zwifting.

Kareltje
Kareltje (@karel-grootte)
6 months ago

I know the feeling well! Had over 100,000 ft climbed before asking my friend when I’d get my Tron bike only to find out I had to sign up for it! Just got it this past week with a lot of extra climbing, but well worth the time & effort.

thierry allegrucci
thierry allegrucci
6 months ago

Luciano, is orange ok? (my triathlon club is called Orange 😉

ShakeNBakeUK
ShakeNBakeUK (@bakeuk_2)
6 months ago

literally the first thing I did after my first ride in Zwift was google “how do you unlock tron bike?” and turned that challenge on immediately. 1 year later, I finally got my tron, still get destroyed in races though 😁

Matthew Medlock
Matthew Medlock
6 months ago

Glad to know I wasn’t the only one. I ‘wasted’ about 15K meters before I learned about it. Not surprisingly, it coincided with my discovery of the Zwift-life-changing site, ZwiftInsider. (Not a paid promotion). I did finish the Tour of California challenge, though. Yea.

Mike
Mike
6 months ago

Great article. As a newbie to zwift, I know nothing different so when the screen with the challenges came up at the start of my Zwifting experience I chose ‘ride across America or California’ whatever. Only when I completed that did I chose the Everest challenge, Doh😖. And to make things worse you don’t get anything for the America/California challenge🤯

Shawn
Shawn
6 months ago
Reply to  Mike

If completing California you get the Specialized Tarmac (Italy is the Pinarello). Enjoy and good luck with your bikes (Everest is Trek Emonda and “Beyond Everest” is the Tron).

Mike
Mike
6 months ago
Reply to  Shawn

Thanks Shawn. That’s news🤣. I got the Tarmac when I levelled up at around 14/15 and then the Emonda a few levels later. No indication they were associated with challenges- I thought they were linked to the levels🤣🤣🤣. But then my mate got a Tarmac Pro at a similar level to when I got the Tarmac. So if the prizes are the same for different challenges, why the difference here? Thanks for the info tho, any other challenges I need to know about?😁

Shawn
Shawn
6 months ago
Reply to  Mike

Not sure but I am an old vet so got my bikes long before the drop shop. Not sure how your mate got the Tarmac Pro unless you mean he bought it with his drops when he was at a high enough level as I thought it was only in the drop shop (hopefully I am just reading your comment wrong regarding this). No other challenges (just 3 [4 if you count the Beyond Everest one for the Tron]). There are hidden badges to get which you can Google about (the most famous being the Everest [in one ride] one).… Read more »

Tony Lane
Tony Lane
6 months ago
Reply to  Mike

I was on the California challenge for the first couple of weeks of Zwifting as I mistaking thought that you got a Tarmac Pro for completing it, and that looked like a much better bike than the Emonda. And I didn’t think I was bothered about the Tron anyway.
Then the penny dropped and I realised that the Tarmac you get for completing the challenge is not as good as the Tarmac Pro that you have to buy, so I switched to the Everest challenge. A mere 2,500m wasted.
And now I quite like the look of the Tron…

Mark
Mark
6 months ago

Because I’m a California native (born in Hollywood 😉) I naturally did the California challenge first. Every Californian seeks out all things California first! When I finished that I decided Everest would be fun, so I chose that. It wasn’t until I got approximately to the death zone that I finally researched how to get the Tron bike. I thought you had to buy it, probably with buckets of blood. As I ascended a funny thing happened: I began to resent Tron bikes more and more. Now, in the jungle, there isn’t any greater satisfaction for me than to mount… Read more »

Bill
Bill
6 months ago

I hit 50k before I checked after it didn’t show up…. working on another 50 a year later

Lewis Goulden
Lewis Goulden
6 months ago

I’ll get my not yellow Tron bike after HR Stage 3 tomorrow morning! Mostly looking forward to not checking to see how many meters I have left to go every time I ride!

Derek
Derek (@dpr4473)
6 months ago

The Tron bike … Why can’t you get a nice red glow? The closest you can come is either pink or orange. Come on Zwift!

Neal Fleenor
Neal Fleenor
6 months ago

Absolutely hilarious! And my wife just achieved her TRON bike, which she painted a wonderful, glowing purple. Yes, she selected the Everest Challenge pretty quickly because…

…well, me of course. Keeping the household happy. And I am especially grateful to the DIRT group that rode with her today and helped her get the TRON.

Dave Bitschy
Dave Bitschy
6 months ago

Awesome Story, I feel bad for you all. When I started Zwifting I clicked on the Everest challenge without knowing about the Tron bike reward. So when I researched how to get it a few weeks later I had already earned quite alot of altitude towards it. I guess I was one of the lucky ones. I finally got the tron bike last week after 4 months and so many times up The Alpe de zwift. The funny thing is I finally won the lightweight Wheels on my LAST ride up as I unlocked the Tron bike, Now I feel… Read more »

Jonathan Heyer
Jonathan Heyer
6 months ago

Literally the First Thing I did was activating this damned Challenge.

S.White
S.White
6 months ago

I didn’t find out about selecting the Everest Challenge until I had been on Zwift for the better part of a year. LOL! So when I finally realized it, and clicked on it, then I had to climb. But it did make me a better climber (it’s very flat and close to sea level where I live, but we do have almost constant winds, being near the ocean). So yep, when I got my Tron bike, I was super stoked!

David Fitzwater
David Fitzwater
6 months ago

Never thought about what color I want, bug now I’m definitely gonna go with YELLOW😄

renni
renni
6 months ago

painted my Tron orange – is that far enough from yellow?

thierry allegrucci
thierry allegrucci
6 months ago

Great one! luckily, I read early on about having to select the challenge (thank you ZwiftInsider). Just reached the 50k this week and like you said, I immediately registered for a crit race to showcase my new acquisition lol. We are so childish but hey, it’s all for good fun. I cannot imagine realizing at 27K that you had to start over again. At least you can now say that you REALLy earned it.

thierry allegrucci
thierry allegrucci
6 months ago

All the owners of tron bikes should registered to a same race/ride that Luciano is registered to and select the yellow colour. He will pass out before reach the finish line lol

PRSboy
PRSboy
6 months ago

I share the pain, having some vague recollection when I started of signing up to the California challenge because it sounded ‘nice’. Felt a deep resentment the other day when the indifferent S Works Tarmac was deposited in my garage, and I ruefully began the Everest challenge.

I know it’s only a game, but it would be fairer to me if Zwift counted all climbing accrued toward the 50,000m regardless of challenge.

Patric
Patric
6 months ago

I love the Lucianotes! Ride on. 👍

Jeff Summers
Jeff Summers
6 months ago

Glad to see I am not the only one who did this. I was 37K in before I signed up for the Everest challenge. Half way there now. Thanks for your column, I really enjoy your thoughts

Holger Highlander
Holger Highlander
6 months ago

Hi Luciano, many thanks for your post. Am literally at 47k now – and after your post frantically checked my challenges. Result: I started the Everesting back in 2018, but in the meantime changed to California and Italy – by whatever freaky reason! So today I re-changed again and will have some extra climbing to get my nice ORANGE TRON bike. Best, Holger

S.White
S.White
6 months ago

Also, although I have changed my tron bike color multiple times since earning it, with pink being by far my most frequent choice, I only tried yellow for a very brief time (two rides?) and then went back to pink. LOL!! I do have it a bright green right now, but I know I will switch back to pink before long. No more yellow for me.

M Newberry
M Newberry
6 months ago

It’s even worse to have it and not realize it. Long story but I JUST realized about two minutes ago it is in my garage. How long it has been there I don’t know, but boy would it have been useful on so many rides. I guess I expected tons of fanfare and confetti, like when you set a PR in-game. Maybe I was so delirious from climbing I just missed it. I do know one thing…it will NEVER be yellow! Thanks for a great read and CONGRATS!

Ryan
Ryan
6 months ago

NGL, the Tron rides really really well. I also did full noob approach by going deep into the California Tour before looking up how to get the Tron… Finally got the Tron on around my 1year Zwiftiversary and now once in a while I swap to some of my (former) favorite frame/wheel combos for nostalgia and novelty. They’re very nice, just not quite as fast.

Cody
Cody
6 months ago

Here’s a (probably silly) question. Do you ever get tired of seeing the Tron bike? I’m talking about actual eye fatigue. I’m still a long way from earning it so I wouldn’t know, but sometimes when I’m riding around several other Tron bikes, I feel like the neon glow would annoy me after a while. Maybe my eyes are just more sensitive than others’ haha

Lennart Bar
Lennart Bar
6 months ago

I´ve done well over 50,000 meters but, stupid as I was when I started zwifting, I chased after the Tour of California and Italy challenge and thus the Everesting-Challenge was not selected all the time. So I’ll get my Tron Bike at around 65,000meters

Alan P
Alan P
6 months ago

when I started, I saw some yellow ones and some pink ones, so I thought you got a pink one for doing the Italy challenge. I assumed France was locked until you had done the others, hence making getting the yellow one a bit harder. I now know the truth.

Debora Momeyer
Debora Momeyer (@deb-momeyer)
6 months ago

Why would you want someone else to have the same unfortunate experience?? I appreciated all the tips from others when a newbie. I like to pay it forward and help others. It’s called good sportsmanship!!
After all, if you would have done the research it mentions in may areas to select the Everest challenge.
Ride on my friend!!

Rich
Rich
6 months ago

Welll…..you learn something everyday. Only been Zwifting for about two months and naturally, as a CA native, have been doing the Tour of California challenge. Oh well, only a couple hundred more kilometers to go to check that one as done so might as well suck it up and be done with it.
Everest Challenge will be next!

Paul
Paul (@paul-mcneil)
6 months ago

I honestly share your pain. i thought I was locked into a specific challenge and had no choice…so I rode California and Italy first, then I found out I could choose…I have almost 40,000 in climbing…now I’m just cresting the top of Everest. And when I get that dang bike it’s gonna be RED not yellow!!!
Thanks for a great laugh today

Buzz
Buzz (@jimbo_jim007)
6 months ago

I’m a long way off, but I reckon it would be awesome to have a BLACK tron bike!

STEVEN
STEVEN
6 months ago

Also probably not well know, is the fact that you may change the challenge your effort is going towards while riding. Going up a hill, change to the climb challenge, going down a hill or on the flats for awhile, choose California or the Italy challenge.

andre nascimento
andre nascimento
6 months ago

Had to say that I did the same mistake, after climbing the 50000m I thought that the Tron will just appear on my garage…Going after it was painful, I can remenber every workout made on Luchter CCW, every u-turn when recovering just to climb up again…

Jon P
Jon P
6 months ago

Lmfao, the look of my face when I finally got to the top of Everest and realized I wasn’t getting it yet. Biggest troll on zwift

TheBlackKite
TheBlackKite (@gilles-schuetz)
5 months ago

Yep…I am also one of those who realised just before hitting the 50k that a challenge need to be activated…But hey I had the Califonia challenge active 🙃
So now I am at a bit over 74km but only half way to get the Tron Bike 😒

Adam Beevers
Adam Beevers
4 months ago

I love my pink Tron bike. It goes with my z top and pink socks!

Scott McKell
Scott McKell
1 month ago

I knew (or hoped) I wasn’t the only one to learn after climbing 10000m that they didn’t count but I had no idea that not knowing it was a thing. Oh well, I’m not about a third of the way and don’t much care what the color is once I get there. Ride On !

Scott McKell
Scott McKell
1 month ago
Reply to  Scott McKell

I will say that I wish you could do other challenges and have those meters count for the Tron.

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