Introducing Strava Club Leaderboards

Feb 3 2012

strava club leaderboard

My club's current standings

As you might have gleaned from my review, I’m a pretty big fan of Strava. But I’ve always been a little disappointed in the Clubs pages.

After all, since I’m already following most of the people in my clubs, a listing of the club rides seems awfully redundant. And while a comments section for smack talk and general announcements is a cool feature, it’s still going to take a back seat to the club listerv as a means of information exchange. While the Strava ride pages have been the continual recipients of cool new features, the club pages have remained rather barren.

What I think would give me a lot more reason to use or visit the club pages is a little friendly competition, and with that in mind, I’ve cooked up a web app that generates and updates standings for Strava clubs. It totals up the ride data for each rider in a given club, and then ranks everyone based on elevation gained, miles traveled, or time spent.

The site also creates RSS feeds for each competition (to keep you abreast of changes or deliver you data to play with) along with some embeddable widgets so you can put the competition up on your site (see sidebar). They’re only available at a width of 252px right now, but that might change soon.

Currently, there are only a handful of the hundreds of Strava clubs on the site, but if you submit yours, the site will give you a permalink for your club standings, and the page should be live in about an hour. I’m still working out a bug or two, but it should be more or less ready for public consumption.

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21 Responses to “Introducing Strava Club Leaderboards”

  1. PDR February 3, 2012 at 12:02 pm #

    This link appears broken:
    http://strava.com/club_standings/1119/

  2. cosmo February 3, 2012 at 12:30 pm #

    Yep. Mistyped it. Should be http://cosmocatalano.com/strava/club_leaders/1119/, which takes you to the Cheshire Cycles leaderboard. http://cosmocatalano.com/strava/club_leaders/ will select a club page at random.

  3. Larry T. February 3, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

    Probably a generational thing but as an old fart I don’t get it. If you want to see how you stack up against others, they have these things called RACES. Everyone shows up and has a go under the same conditions, all at the same time with some impartial folks keeping track of the placings. I’d bet there have already been folks using these gizmos “cheating” in some way to show up their friends just as some use dope or other banned methods or equipment. Seems more about marketing and more crap to buy than sport to this old fart.

  4. cosmo February 3, 2012 at 2:30 pm #

    @Larry T: I’ve been to these “Races” of which you speak—a lot of them, actually. And if you want to talk about “crap to buy” to “show up friends”, there’s way more of it on the start line in even the Cat5 fields than you’ll ever find on Strava.

    In a market where I can’t even afford to ride Ultegra anymore, grabbing GPS data with a phone I already have is free. And while you certainly can pay to use a GPS site, nearly all of them have some level of free membership.

    It is, as you’ve suggested, sensationally easy to cheat the system, but even with a leaderboard in place, it’s tough to make the argument that the those who choose to edit are cheating anyone but themselves. Can the same be said of a ‘cross racer with a power washer and a pit crew surrounded by competitors who don’t even have a spare bike? I’m inclined to say “no”.

  5. huphtur February 3, 2012 at 2:50 pm #

    Sweet, you should set it to be X amount of days (30, 7 or user input maybe?) instead of starting fresh each month.

  6. Timo February 4, 2012 at 1:30 am #

    Metric option please!

  7. cosmo February 4, 2012 at 5:49 pm #

    @Timo: First thing I’m going to fix. Dawned on me about halfway through, but think I have a good, quick fix in mind. Hopefully ready within the week.

    @huphtur: I’ll think about it. My ability to access/slice up the data that goes into the leaderboard isn’t quite as nimble as I’d like, but I may be able to put together something.

  8. Seth February 4, 2012 at 7:28 pm #

    This is awesome. Thanks for writing this and sharing it.

  9. JMo February 5, 2012 at 2:15 am #

    Well done! Our shop club, Endless Cycles, will make fine use of this app. It’s just what we’ve been looking for, Thank You!

  10. cosmo February 5, 2012 at 5:18 pm #

    You should now be able to toggle units between metric and English/imperial/whatever Americans use by clicking the link the upper right.

    (I’ll probably move that link somewhere else once I’m sure it works)

  11. Larry T. February 6, 2012 at 8:38 am #

    Dunno Cosmo…maybe it’s only the generational thing for me. But at least with showing up, pinning on a number (and I’m not buying your implication that somehow you can’t be competitive unless your components are equal to Ultegra when I can remember some pros at LeTour riding on Campagnolo Chorus back-in-the-day) and RACING – the judges are impartial, the actual event is the same for everyone (no tailwinds on the day you “beat” your friends up groundhog hill while they were at work) and everyone can see who did what and to whom as far as results. This electronic game scheme’s not far from hooking a gizmo up to your home trainer, which is not far from a video game..while ALL of that is FAR from a real RACE. I just can’t help feeling if one feels they have something to prove (or find out) on a bicycle regarding competition, it should be in a RACE (even if it’s a time trial)rather than via an electronic/computerized “post the best time whenever you like” scheme.

  12. cosmo February 6, 2012 at 12:26 pm #

    @Larry T: the implication wasn’t that 105 isn’t competitive. 105 is pretty amazing, all things considered. It’s just to point out that the “RACE” you hold up as the only “real” form of competition is extremely expensive—especially when you look at the “gizmos” that actually make a performance difference, or tally up a season’s worth of gas money and entry fees.

    While I agree completely that competition-by-proxy isn’t the same as a “race”, it is extremely inexpensive by comparison, and it’s not hard to imagine athletes for whom it’s the only financially viable means of competition.

    And as to the “tailwinds on groundhog hill”, the fact is that in a “real RACE” judges aren’t impartial (just ask Flecha) and “real RACE” conditions aren’t always consistant (just ask Durand or Boardman). If anything, the trainer/”video game” scenario you mention with some disdain above is the most “fair” competition posible since digital variables can be absolutely controlled for all riders.

    But again, I think this is beside the point—Strava isn’t intended to be, nor is it extensively used as, a surrogate for sanctioned racing. Riding and training data have always existed, it’s just that there used to be no way to record and tally them. Even before technology could accurately clock everything from wattage to inclination, club riders (and pros) kept semi-competitive records of times on local climbs. The only thing that’s changed is the ability to record, analyze, and share data—and I think it’s silly to say that now that such technology exists, riders are somehow wrongheaded for using it.

  13. Bert Bondy February 6, 2012 at 12:38 pm #

    Larry T: Definitely an old fart thing.

    Thanks for the Leaderboard gizmo Cosmo!

  14. Larry T. February 6, 2012 at 1:45 pm #

    I’ll stop ragging on the electronic stuff as there’s no doubt it is at some level the old-fart thing but on the other hand I would like to take issue with the idea that being competitive in bike racing is so expensive. Some of the comments on the ‘cross bit elaborated on this. The bike industry LOVES to make folks think they need expensive gear to be competitive but how much does it REALLY cost to buy a decently performing Chinese-made bike from an outfit like, say, Neuvation? Nobody is going to convince me that an athlete using one of those is going to be at any measurable disadvantage in anything less than a Grand Tour (and arguably not even there) vs an athlete on a $15 K Cervelo with Dura Ace DI2. Enjoy playing with the gizmos and “racing” against your pals but don’t get confused, the real guys pin on numbers and get out there to see how they stack up under the exact same conditions and at the same time as their competitors. The rest of it is just playing around.

  15. Mike 'MrCrash' Solis February 20, 2012 at 2:12 pm #

    Wanted to thank you for all your work in maintaining the club leaderboards. Club competitions are the most fun part about Strava for a wanna-be competitive recreational rider like me!

  16. Mike 'MrCrash' Solis February 23, 2012 at 1:32 pm #

    Hey Cosmo, I was wondering – is there any way to view monthly totals for past months in the club leaderboards? With all the GPS-based competitions they hold, I’m sure my local shop would love to have access to that information as well.

    Thanks again for all your hard work, and for making GPS usage fun again!

  17. Kurt Wallace March 6, 2012 at 6:02 pm #

    @Larry – I’ve been there. You have to be monster strong to win at a high level, but a thousand things can make you lose, including equipment and support.

    Strava is a time-suck, but it’s a win for normal humans looking for relevant data.

    Bravo to Strav & Cosmo for making it more accessible.

  18. Martin March 26, 2012 at 7:57 am #

    Hi there, looks good but i cannot manage to import data on our club – I get an error message that it has a “private membership”. The club is http://app.strava.com/clubs/1026 – can you help please?
    Thanks – all the best from Norway

  19. Chancho April 26, 2012 at 4:29 pm #

    I´m getting the same error message as Martin when trying to enter http://app.strava.com/clubs/6649. Is it because one of the members has a hidden profile?

    • cosmo April 26, 2012 at 10:38 pm #

      Yes, there’s a number of bugs I need to fix. Hoping this weekend. Hoping.

  20. Jon September 2, 2014 at 11:50 am #

    Is this thing alive? I get the same private membership error. This was just the app I was looking for otherwise, wierd that Strava hasn’t implemented it yet.

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