When a 61 year old guy (me) riding a recumbent tricycle and wearing baggy shorts and who has had two hips replaced, lumber and thoracic back surgery, a heart attack and who can out perform many of his peers and many other MAMILs (middle aged men in lycra) on "traditional bikes", what does that say about cycling?
Maybe it says that recumbents have a distinct advantage in many situations. Riding a recumbent trike allows by aging bones and muscles to be more efficient.
It's estimated that normal non-faired recumbents are pushing up to less then 20% to 25% air then a standard upright bike. At speed this makes a huge difference. So (here I go again on the UCI) why doesn't the UCI allow racing cyclists the opportunity to be faster in events sanctioned by the UCI? Whether it's a traditional bike or an aerodynamic faired recumbent, let the top racing cyclists have the opportunity to choose the fastest bike for any given race or record attempt.
The UCI says it's about the athlete and not the bike...bull. The cycling industry has a big investment in "real" bikes and the UCI is protecting that investment at the cost of not expanding the industry and making it more exciting. The materials have changed but the UCI definition of a bike has not significantly changed since the 1930's.
The UCI should allow racers to up their game by updating the their definition of a bicycle.
More important it would send a message to recreational cyclists that alternative cycling options exist and are acceptable. I see many folks around my age (and some younger) looking out of place and uncomfortable riding expensive high end road bikes trying to "fit in". Maybe someday riding a recumbent might be "normal".