Steering Launched on Zwift’s FutureWorks

Steering Launched on Zwift’s FutureWorks

Zwift rolled out steering tonight, a beta feature which is the first release under Zwift’s new FutureWorks platform. Never before have Zwifters been able to control the direction of their avatar… but that all changes today!

How To Start Steering

Want to give it a go? Here’s how to do it:

  • Make sure your Zwift install is up to date
  • Make sure Zwift Companion is installed and running on your phone, and your phone is mounted to your handlebars
  • You’ll want to have your front wheel set up in a way where it can be easily turned (perhaps a tilted lazy susan) and/or allow your entire bike to lean (perhaps using a rocker plate)
  • Choose “Dust In the Wind“, “Muir and the Mountain” or “Quatch Quest” Watopia routes for the most direct line to the new trail
  • When you begin riding, make sure Zwift Companion is paired up and showing your location on the map. You will not receive the steering prompt unless Zwift Companion is connected to your Zwift session.
  • When you reach the fork in the road with a right turn marked by a question mark–take the right turn!
  • Follow the instructions to start steering

Once you finish riding Repack Ridge, you can ride down the paved road, flip a u-turn after passing the trailhead, then turn right onto the singletrack again if you’d like. Repack Ridge is a one-way road for now, so you can only enter from one direction.

Need more specific directions? Check out this thorough support page on Zwift’s site.

Unlocking Your MTB

According to Zwift, if you finish the course is under 12:30 with all 10 stars and you’ll unlock the Zwift mountain bike frame and wheels. (I finished with just 9 stars and still unlocked the bike and wheels.)

The mountain bike can be ridden anywhere in Zwift. Prepare to see some fat tires on the tarmac!

About the New Course (Repack Ridge)

The new singletrack section is named “Repack Ridge”, a shoutout to the Repack course in Marin County, CA which played a crucial role in the early development of mountain biking between 1976-1984.

Why was it called Repack? Because the bikes’ old hub coaster brakes would get so hot the heat would vaporize, and riders would have to repack the hub with new grease after a run or two!

Zwift’s course is a bit like Repack–similar in length, and both courses finish with a tough climb containing multiple hairpins.

Here’s a Strava segment details for Zwift’s Repack Ridge:

Distance: 3.1km (1.9 miles)
Elevation Gain: 94m (308′)

Strava Segment

Skeptical?

Steering not for you? Jon Mayfield says there’s no reason to be concerned:

For those that are skeptical, don’t worry. Steering will most likely never be mandatory for just riding around, training, or even most event formats – but we do see an opportunity for some new modes as well as enhancing existing experiences for those who want it. For now, we’re simply testing whether the phone is a workable solution.

What Do You Think?

Be sure to share your feedback in the popup Zwift gives you after finishing Repack Ridge–after all, that’s what FutureWorks is all about! But feel free to share your thoughts below as well!

About The Author

Eric Schlange

Eric runs Zwift Insider in his spare time when he isn't on the bike or managing various business interests. He lives in Northern California with his beautiful wife, two kids and dog. Follow on Strava

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Jarek
Jarek
1 year ago

I’d love to have an option to decide where I’d like to go 🙂 I tried the steering. It was completely unstable, I was not able to keep straight line when the phone was mounted on the handlebar. Then I noticed, that it is sensitive to “roll” only, and I had to fail: the trainer allows movements side-to-side (and that why I was riding “from a bush to a rock”, the handlebar has “flat” characteristic (so no reaction on turning it). Is it intentional? Why don’t you calculate the direction on magnetic sensor? I know, that “in real world” steering… Read more »

John Gearhart
John Gearhart (@john-gearhart)
1 year ago

I’ve ridden Repack Ridge twice and found rocker plate and steering was was too difficult. I removed the turntable from the front wheel and found leaning with the rocker plate was just subtle enough to stay on the trail, at least half the time, with practice it will be really fun !

Justin Godfrey
Justin Godfrey
1 year ago

Love the chance to ride off road. Wasn’t a huge fan of the steering as much as I thought I would. It tricky on a trainer and takes away from you actual ride. Concerting is steers more then riding. Would definitely love more trails but no need for the steering. Cheers

Justin Godfrey
Justin Godfrey
10 months ago

I would love to have the flexibility of using the steering or not. Like training on the road I want to concentrate on the workout not steering, but if I wanted to just play then the steering is a fun option. Thanks

jordan
10 months ago

Seems simple buttons would be much better. One on each handlebar. Push the right one you go right, left one you go left. Shouldn’t add too much cost. Be amazing for racing. Squeeze into pace lines, squeeze others out.

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