New upgrade guidelines
Ok folks the USAC has changed the upgrade guidelines. Everyone who might be interested in upgrading should go to http://www.usacycling.org/forms/USAC_rulebook.pdf and download the pdf and review the new guidelines. It will take me a little time to get the NCNCA upgrade FAQ page updated.
Basically the USAC adopted a form of the NCNCA alternative points system for all categories. All categories will now get the same points schedule for races. The number of places that get points and the number of points will change based on the field size.
In Crits and circuit races if the starting field has 5-10 riders then the top 3 finishers get 3/2/1 upgrade points. For fields of 11-12 the top 4 finishers get 4/3/2/1 upgrade points. for 21-50 riders the top 6 get 5/4/3/2/1 points and for 50+ fields the top 6 get 7/5/4/3/2/1 just like before.
For road races the points schedule goes like this
5-10 riders 3/2/1, 11-20 riders 7/5/4/3/2/1, for 21-50 riders 8/6/5/4/3/2/1 and for 50+ riders 10/8/7/6/5/4/3/2/1
So basically there are a lot more points to be had in road races now. Also if a road race isn't long enough to qualify for upgrade points the race can still earn points under the Crit/circuit race points schedule if the RR is as long or longer than the Crit/Circuit race Min distance.
For Cat 3 to 2 upgrades and 2 to 1 upgrades the stage race GC upgrade points also have various points based on field size. For 3 to 2 upgrades it should be noted that riders are limited to getting a Max of 15 point from a single event ( ie even though the points schedule says a rider gets 20 points for winning the GC in a race with 50 or more riders you can only apply 15 of those points towards an upgrade to Cat 2).
Also new are the Max number of points a Cat 3 or Cat 2 rider earn before they get an automatic upgrade. Cat 3s will not earn an automatic upgrade if they get 40 upgrade points in a 12 month period and Cat 2 will get an automatic upgrade if they get 50 points in a 12 month period.
All upgrade requests will be judged against the new upgrade guidelines so riders who may have been turned down for an upgrade recently may now qualify, especially if they have results in road races in fields with 11 or more riders.