So there's three main hand positions you're going to be in when you're road racing. The first is going to be when you are riding pretty easy in the pack. Nothing is really happening. You're recovering. It's pretty chill. And that position is going to be up here. You're going to be most upright in this position. You're also really not going to have too much control of your shifting or breaking. So this is a position you're going to be in when the pack is riding at a pretty easy pace and there's not too much movement in the group.
The second position you're going to find yourself in, is on the hooves. This is going to be the most popular position, or the position you're going to find yourself in the most. Here you have the ability to shift, break, climb, sprint, pretty much everything you're going to want to do. You're going to be a little bit more upright than in the drops, but you're going to be a little bit more stretched out.
Third position you're going to find yourself in, are in the drops. You're not going to want to climb in the drops. You're going to be descending in the drops. You're going to be sprinting in the drops. You're also going to find that you're going to be able to break a little bit easier in the drops. You have a little bit more leverage on your brakes.
So again, this is great for more relaxed riding in the pack, maybe climbing at an easier pace. This is a really good, pretty much universal, position for almost everything. Drops, for when you're sprinting. When you want to get as arrow as possible. When you want to get tucked down. If the pace is really, really, quick, and you need to use as much of your energy as possible.
Those are the three hand positions you're going to use when you race your bike.