casey wrote:a true Cat 3 should not be complaining that they are outclassed in terms of ability in an elite 3 race.
That's what I don't get about the Cat 1 level. Cat 1 used to mean something very fast, the Jedis of USCF. I mean if you're Cat 1 you beat Cat 2s consistently enough to upgrade which is a pretty cool thing.
So why would a Jedi would want to enter an open 45+ race with another half-dozen jedis, 20 people who never had a prayer of going past Cat 3, and the other half the field possibly being in one of their first 10 events? I don't get it. How is that fun?
Would it be a problem if 45+ 1's just raced 35+ 123 or p12 all the time? So these races become 45+ 2/3/4. If you can't compete anymore at that level...easy solution, just turn in your light saber, take it down one cat, and you're back in.
It seems in 45+ it's the equivalent of someone (anyone) being able to show up in 35+ 4/5 races and win every weekend and never be upgraded out of it.
Last thing - I thought the point of 5s was starting out, no prizes, all for fun...if so...5s are 5s = one mixed group for all ages. Forget about not being able to do "team strategy" with your cat 4 teammates, that can wait until race #11.
SanJoCycle wrote: Yes, the 45+ 3's currently often have all the opportunity to get their collective butts kicked several times a day :wink:.
Are you saying 45+ 3's can't be competitive with E3's? You do know that categories are not age-dependent? IOW, it doesn't matter how old you are. If you're a 45+ 3 and are getting your butt kicked by the E3's then you should not be a cat 3.
SanJoCycle wrote: Promoters often run 35+1/2/3 and 45+1/2/3, then why have an E3 field, why not P/1/2/3? .
Generally, there is a significant difference in skill between 3's and the 1/2's, and the 1,2's understandably prefer not to have to race with the more dangerous 3's.
Get in a fast 35+ 1,2,3 race and you can see this difference in skill among the guys who are consistently at the front compared to those who are generally at the back.
It's amusing to hear all these guys who think that going into an older category will result in easier racing. Not in NorCal.
No mention of juniors who all race together, masters women who almost never get a separate race, 55+ guys who always have to keep up with the 45+ 1,2's...
All this complaining about how hard it is to race guys your own age but no discussion whatsoever about how to improve fitness and skills...
If a 45+ Cat 3 is getting their butt kicked in the elite 3 race then they should be thinking about downgrading ( in theory). Your category is age independent. A Cat 3 no matter what their age should be competitive in the elite 3 field. In reviewing some of the Cat 3 races from the past year the average age of riders in the Cat 3 races is a bit over 30 years in most cases. The ages of the top 6 riders in the Elite 3 BAR rankings from last year were 29, 33, 32, 38, 27 and 41. In looking at a few Cat 3 results from the pat year there have been 40+ riders in the top 10 in elite 3 races on a fairly regular basis.
Now if you are 45+ and a Cat 3 and you prefer to ride with people only in your 10 year age group then that is understandable but a true Cat 3 should not be complaining that they are outclassed in terms of ability in an elite 3 race.
mhernandez wrote:disadvantaged ... jayzus f'in christ.
At almost all criteriums in NorCal a 45 year old cat 3 has the opportunity to race twice in any given event. Sometimes 3, like the above.
Look ... if you're concerned about disparity in ability ... there's just no race day schedule that is going to please all.
I believe you are confusing "opportunity" with "advantage". Yes, the 45+ 3's currently often have all the opportunity to get their collective butts kicked several times a day :wink:.
Promoters often run 35+1/2/3 and 45+1/2/3, then why have an E3 field, why not P/1/2/3? I believe the 45+ 3's are requesting the same/similar opportunity afforded to the E3's and are willing to compromise on 35+3/4. I believe this is a win-win as the field size generally will be allowed to be 100 and the career 5's will be encouraged to upgrade.
True, "there's just no race day schedule that is going to please all". I believe the "request" here is for race promoters to consider the demographics (rather than just focusing on tradition) when choosing which fields to run.
yermama is crying a river for this entire thread.
The Jesster wrote:I need to return to my premise that the 45+ 3's are the most disadvantaged male field out there
Let's see, at Landpark - a 45 year old cat 3 can race with the 45/55's, the 35+ 1/2/3, and the cat 3.
That's 3 races in one day.
Jess ... i think you take the term "disadvantaged" to an all aMErican height.
disadvantaged ... jayzus f'in christ.
And, I understand that you'd like to race with a field more in line with your ability & age. But "disadvantaged?"
i have to spit now.
I need to return to my premise that the 45+ 3's are the most disadvantaged male field out there, AND there are A LOT of us (290).
With the present traditional divisions, we are given the choice to race against the young 3's in the Elite 3 category, the younger AND stronger in the 35+ 1/2/3 category, or the stronger in the open 45+ category. Presently Velo Promo doesn't even offer the 45+ open cat at its crits, so the choice is even worse. Brisbane is offering us no masters cat and only an elite 2/3, so that's the worst ever!
In our yuppie-heavy region there are 290 45+ 3's in this dilemma!! And it is logical that our demographic pie-piece will be proportionally swelling as the Lance-boomers age!
This is not a little issue. It's one promoters should consider now.
As shawndoggy wrote:seems to me that by changing the current proclivity for 35/45 4/5 fields to 3/4 fields makes the most sense for everyone.
First, it cuts out the newbies and forces the "career 5s" to get off their duffs and get an upgrade.
Second it allows for bigger fields where appropriate. While it would mean a smaller 5-only field, I cannot believe that with all of the sellouts in the 35+ 4/5 fields that that means that there aren't a bunch of 5s with the requisite ten races under their belts who could get out if they want to.
Third, adding the 3/4 field may encourage some "career 4s" to get their upgrades in. I have a feeling that there are more than a few masters 4s who see upgrading out of cat 4 as a choice of being packfill forever or staying where they are competitive.
Vinokurtov wrote:...670 45+ 4/5 riders don't need another 210 Cat 3's thrown in on top of them.
Rather than "thrown in on top of them" I believe a "better" split would be a 45+ 3/4 (399 total) field and have the 45+ 5's (197 total) race with the E5's and, in a perfect world, also have a 45+ open.
SanJoCycle wrote:I do believe you will get a "better" more complete demographic (especially if you are looking at numbers rather than percentages) by looking into the past rather than using numbers that currently only represent ~65% of the total NCNCA membership (based on last years numbers of course :wink:) and only 2-1/2 months into the new year.
Ok, if I use end of '06 numbers it just bolsters my case that 670 45+ 4/5 riders don't need another 210 Cat 3's thrown in on top of them. Though those numbers don't de facto represent "active" racers, only license holders, which of course will go up as the year goes on.
The 45+ 1/2 numbers jump from 88 to 118 which out to have those promoters out shopping for new Ferrari's... :wink:
Quote:Only if you believe you can look into the future based on the past.
Yes, I do believe you will get a "better" more complete demographic (especially if you are looking at numbers rather than percentages) by looking into the past rather than using numbers that currently only represent ~65% of the total NCNCA membership (based on last years numbers of course :wink:) and only 2-1/2 months into the new year.
I think it's best to look at the demographics that Casey captured at the end of last year "Dec. 29th, 2006" as they give a "better" picture of the NCNCA.
Only if you believe you can look into the future based on the past. We've had the better part of two months racing. People get older, drop out, move up. The numbers are what they are, not what they were.
The reason I said the promoter must make choices about racing categories is for the reasons Casey mentioned.
Back in the NorthEast races with Elite 2,3's together are fairly common. They also offer many days with separate races for 30+, 40+, 50+, and sometimes a 60+.
Kind of like the old cat 4 challenge!
A whole masters weekend would be kinda fun.......
And if I win the lotto the old Tour of Nevada will be back on.........
Talk of the hardest NCNCA race ends right there, period.
Spot on - promoters can present absolutely whatever blend of categories he/she has the stomach to risk. As my Grandpa always said, "You don;t have to go Reno to gamble". We have a NorCal promoter who, despite vastly different school schedule conflicts, conflicts with out-of-state and National training camps, wants to promote a Junior-only stage race - again. Despite limited sponsorship and minimal entry fee revenue, he pays all the bills for a magnificent weekend. He does the very same in May with a Women only Stage Race and has for years. When it's your race, you're the Piper who calls the Tune. Assume the risk and cover the costs and you can run any combo you want or could dream of. Sweet - it's what we always tell our exchange students - you're in California where everything's possible - you just have to cover the costs.
Personally, I love the idea of high profile TT's and would love to do one - as soon as I hit my number on a wednesday or saturday. Lotto, that's what my kin folk call the Redneck 401K.
Tom Simpson - Pilarcitos Cyclesports
SanJoCycle wrote:Quote:Second, for now, it seems like a choice has to be made by a promoter, offer a 45+, OR a 45+ 3,4... race, not both a 45+ 1,2,3 race and another race for 45+ 3,4....
Casey, does such a "restriction" exist? Specificially, can a promoter offer both a 45+ 1/2/3 (or just open) and a 45+ 3/4 fields at the same event? Or for that matter a 35+ 1/2/3 and a 35+ 3/4 fields?
A promoter can offer what ever categories they want. The main limitation is how many hours of sunlight there are or how long it is till your officials and volunteers drop due to exhaustion :) Maybe instead of having a Cat 1/2/pro race or any elite races a promoter could have a full race schedule of different versions of 45+ races if they wanted to.
Quote:Second, for now, it seems like a choice has to be made by a promoter, offer a 45+, OR a 45+ 3,4... race, not both a 45+ 1,2,3 race and another race for 45+ 3,4....
Interesting to note that the Cat's Hill race Ad which I just approved lists a 45+ 2/3/4 race so the 45+ Cat 1s and 5s will have to find another group to ride in that day. They have the more traditional 35+ 1/2/3 and 35+ 4/5 categories.
First, many 3's, and virtually any cat 1 or 2 you ask do not like having to race with 4's and 5's. Including 5's with the 45+ is terrible for everyone involved. I'm sure you can think of some reasons. 45+ 1,2,3 is much better for everyone than just 45+.
Second, for now, it seems like a choice has to be made by a promoter, offer a 45+, OR a 45+ 3,4... race, not both a 45+ 1,2,3 race and another race for 45+ 3,4....
Third, There aren't really that many 45+ races now, so when you propose cutting that limited number in half (?) there aren't a lot of 45+ or 45+ 1,2,3 races left.
See you at Menlo Park. :-)
WarrenG wrote:"So, when somebody writes that a 45+ open race is "pandering to the elites"...
You're right, warren. It's not "pandering to the elites," it's "pandering to the elites and to the minority who want to race exclusively against the elites" (e.g. you).
If the promoters of this year's crits split the occurrances of 45+ open and 45+ 3/4 fields, I believe that for all of the reasons discussed above, there will be a higher participation in the 45+ 3/4 races than in the open fields. Until the 3/4 field is more commonly offered, there really is no authoritative method of gauging this aforehand, but the demographics make this a logical assumption.
And while I understand and appreciate the preference you and a couple of others have expressed for racing in a more expert mixed category, it seems as if more respondees are expressing a preference for a more skill-focused category.
If those two assumptions are true, as I believe they are, then presenting an open age-group category could fairly be called "pandering" to the minority -- be they the Ubers (who haven't yet engaged this debate, by the way) or the guys like yourself who prefer to race against Ubers.
But rather than using a perjorative like "pandering," why don't we just call it "showcasing?" I mean, the Ubers are the vast minority. They're winning ALL the crits (except one). They're second-place in all the crits (except two). Which sort of makes the rest of us bit players for their starring performances, doesn't it?
I too have great photos that I treasure of myself and Larry in a breakaway together - from two separate races. I'm proud to have been spanked by him time and again. I have learned more from Larry than from any other person except Scott Saifer, my coach. Now I'd like to put those lessons to work against my peers. And maybe by racing sometimes against my betters and sometimes against my peers, I'll become a better and more confident racer.
So c'mon promoters, mix it up! Sometimes 45+ open and sometimes 45+ 3/4!!
Quote:There are xxx 45+ Cat 4/5 racers, and xxx 45+ 1/2/3 racers, xxx of which are Cat 3 racers. The demographics...
The numbers you are using were captured "Feb. 16th, 2007".
I think it's best to look at the demographics that Casey captured at the end of last year "Dec. 29th, 2006" as they give a "better" picture of the NCNCA.
"Against Larry" ? With him is even more fun. Team Sprints, and the points race with him at the 2005 World Championships was one of the most fun races I've ever done. He was an important part of both my wins at Nat's, and he gives back a lot to other riders, like at EB's, and http://lists.sonic.net/pipermail/ncnca/2007-February/001260.html
So, when somebody writes that a 45+ open race is "pandering to the elites"...
:D Jesster... I agree with you! Racing against Larry is great.
I have talked to him at races , and he is always been a great guy!
From my encounters with him, no ego there, he just loves to race!
I have on my Screen Saver a picture of me riding against Larry.
Yeah! Neck to Neck! Then, I think he mumbled, Got to go now!
Watts ALOTS. Someday maybe... For now, grabbing 4/5 or 3/4
races when I can. Alway hoping to get better!
Okay, it's not "ubber" as in "Son of Flubber," it's "uber" as in "flog my tuber, you wood-swinging Cat. 1 hode."
That's really all I have to add to this excellent thread. Great discussion, guys.
I would like to say this in response to Warren: I think Larry Nolan is an absolute God. And a sweetheart and a mensch, and the best wheel I've ever latched onto, and the only guy to take a prime out of my solo grip from 200 meters behind. (Actually Bubba did it once too). I would never want to exclude myself from ever racing him again.
But that's not what this thread was about! It was about having promoters consider an alternative field or an additional field of 45+ 3/4's for their events. (And segregating and mentoring the 5's). Seven or eight crits with a 45+/55+ 3/4 field would be just great!!
It's certainly not about how we train. Nor about discounting the work or the talents of the 1/2's. I want to keep racing against them to improve and I want to race sometimes against my own talent/age level.
shawndoggy wrote:... and the uber group (45+ 1/2/3 or open or whatever you wanna call it)? What's the downside?
Dawg, you're throwing a 35+ paradigm on the 45's. We're a much thinner herd than you guys. And when you get here you'll realize that there's a big difference between the two age groups, in race structure and if nothing else we need really long pee breaks...you've got a ways to go before you start getting the annual prostate exam. :oops:
The downside is the likely disappearance of of a 45+ open or 1/2/3 race. Jess has already floated the idea/perception that the "Ubbers" should be racing the Pro 1/2 or 35+ 1/2/3. There's a limited amount of time and support structure at the races and you've got less than 100 1/2 45+ racers in the entire District. Those are split in fair numbers between pure crit guys and pure climbers. Look at the 45+ Cantua and Pine Flat entry list and see how few people did both days.
If you're a three, you're past the "dabbling" stage, especially in the 45's, where there are enough "open" races to run into the ubbers and know exactly what you're up against. I don't believe there's a 45+ Cat 3 rider out there in this district that didn't know the level of competition when he put in for the upgrades. Most of the 45 3's aren't looking to avoid the Ubbers, we're scheming of ways to beat them.
And the thing is, the Ubbers aren't gods. I've beaten them and seen them beaten. What they are is very talented guys who work their tails off and race very smart. If I upgrade to 2 I'd like to have a race where I'm at least getting killed by people who are also eligible for early retirement.
I don't fall into any of these categories, but I still think CAT5s should always race by themselves regardless of age. Make it 35+ 3/4, 45+ 3/4 and provide two groups of 5's to race with each other.
Makes WAY too much sense that way...
Quoted from the previous post
Quote:"Well, more racing opportunities for one. And, as noted in my post, above, the ability to dabble in the 1/2/3 group(s) to see if it's for them. Clearly there's something keeping a lot of people from upgrading if the cats are so overloaded on the low end. Some of those people will discover, as you have, that they are competitive in those races. Others will likely discover that they are not. So what's wrong with offering an intermediate level, safer group (3/4) as a compliment to a beginner group (5s) and the uber group (45+ 1/2/3 or open or whatever you wanna call it)? What's the downside?"
I would naturally expect that the lower categories would have more people than the upper categories as a natural fact. Anyone can be a Cat 5 or really a Cat 4. It takes a level of ability and accomplishment to become a Cat 3 and more such abilities to become a Cat 2 and even ore abilities yet to become a Cat 1. Everyone doesn't have the skills and abilities to be a Cat 3 or 2 or 1 so as you go up the category level you would naturally expect to see fewer and fewer riders in those upper categories. If we had more Cat 2s and that 4s then I'd be worried that something was wrong with the upgrade system :)
Vinokurtov wrote:445 4/5 racers don't need another 150 better riders thrown in on top of them.
Well obviously it would be somewhat less than that, Kurt. In a 3/4 race, the 5s aren't allowed to race. So your 445 is really 248, once we subtract the 197 5s.
Vinokurtov wrote:Interesting to note that virtually every 3/4 race I looked at was won by a 3. And the biggest reason you don't see as much carnage in the 3/4 as in the 4/5 is the 3's are laying the wood to the 4's in most cases.
Right. And as Jess pointed out, 3s are rarely winning in the open group.
Vinokurtov wrote:The simple solution to not wanting to race against the ubbers is to downgrade and become a 4 again. Or race E3 where you're more evenly matched.
Under the current paradigm, yes. But this discussion is about changing the paradigm. As for racing in the E3s, there is a widely held perception, rightly or wrongly, that that field can be awfully sketchy too.
Vinokurtov wrote:If creating a 3/4 race will get people to upgrade from 4 to 3, what's the point if they are just racing the same people?
Well, more racing opportunities for one. And, as noted in my post, above, the ability to dabble in the 1/2/3 group(s) to see if it's for them. Clearly there's something keeping a lot of people from upgrading if the cats are so overloaded on the low end. Some of those people will discover, as you have, that they are competitive in those races. Others will likely discover that they are not. So what's wrong with offering an intermediate level, safer group (3/4) as a compliment to a beginner group (5s) and the uber group (45+ 1/2/3 or open or whatever you wanna call it)? What's the downside?
I knew exactly what I was getting into when I put in for my upgrade to 3. It wasn't like I was shocked to suddenly line up against these guys. I did it as a 4 and a 5, which was really silly when you think about it.
There are 445 45+ Cat 4/5 racers, and 249 45+ 1/2/3 racers, 150 of which are Cat 3 racers. The demographics, upgrade structure, and talent level support a 45+ 4/5, not a 3/4/5, or 3/4.
If you look at the entry size of many of the 45+ 4/5 races, or especially the 35+ 4/5, there's a big turnout, and often the fields are full and closed.
445 4/5 racers don't need another 150 better riders thrown in on top of them.
Interesting to note that virtually every 3/4 race I looked at was won by a 3. And the biggest reason you don't see as much carnage in the 3/4 as in the 4/5 is the 3's are laying the wood to the 4's in most cases.
The simple solution to not wanting to race against the ubbers is to downgrade and become a 4 again. Or race E3 where you're more evenly matched.
If creating a 3/4 race will get people to upgrade from 4 to 3, what's the point if they are just racing the same people? Or the people that were staying in the 4's to be competitive who now have to deal with the same people they were glad to get rid of? You want to be king of the moderately talented or folks with no time to train?
I would like Robert to offer some 45+ crits though...having guys nearing 50 racing against people just stepping out of the pro ranks is a bit hard. I can train as hard as I can but until someone comes up with a time machine, there's no substitute for youth.
seems to me that by changing the current proclivity for 35/45 4/5 fields to 3/4 fields makes the most sense for everyone.
Third, adding the 3/4 field may encourage some "career 4s" to get their upgrades in. I have a feeling that there are more than a few masters 4s who see upgrading out of cat 4 as a choice of being packfill forever or staying where they are competitive. But if they can get the 3 upgrade and race in the 35+ (or if Warren had his way 45+) 1/2/3 races, and/or the 3/4 races, it'd give these guys a chance to dabble... to test the waters to see if they've got the fitness. But right now that Cat 3 upgrade (imho, as a 3 myself) is the biggest of the upgrade leaps, and one that many folks don't know whether they can handle. If there's a masters 3/4 group run regularly, that may help with the transition.
The Menlo Park race on March 10 has races for 35+ 3/4, and 45+ open, and 35+ 1/2/3. Watch out for those guys with special trim on their jerseys.
Well said and I could not agree with you more. Given our current demographic, it seems to make more sense to have a 45+ 1/2/3 (or just 45+ open) AND a 45+ 3/4 field and have the 45+ 5's race with the E5's, as it only takes experience and/or clinics to become a 4. Giving the 45+ 3's a choice, being able to have higher field limits, serving the highest demographic and giving the 3/4's a better shot at glory seems like a win-win. Same may apply to the 35+ fields and if participation is not expected to near capacity, a promoter could consider "combining" fields (e.g. 35+/45+ 3/4 or just 35+ 3/4).
I like racing in the open 45+ category. I'm a cat 4. There is a good chance they are gonna spank me on a regular basis - that's ok. It gives me something to strive for, and it is VERY enjoyable to race in a field full of riders that all know how to ride a bike.
That is not always the case with the 35+ 4/5 field - sometimes it's more along the lines of taking the straight sections like a top fuel dragster and the corners like the statue of liberty.
I like racing in the 45+ 3/4 category - the Wente crit last year was a very good race. Much better than a 45+ 4/5.
I agree with the school of thought of just letting cat 5's race all together (with mentors when possible).
What I like MOST is being able to do more than one crit in a day!
It would be cool to have more 45+ 3/4 races, but be careful what you wish for - remember the old saying - something about screwing yourself out of a seat at the table.
My bike handling skills are better than my fitness level - I know that's what I need to even out if I'm gonna compete with the "ubers" - no matter what age.
But I'd rather hang on for dear life in a open 45 race than fear for my life in a 4/5 race :D
I believe we (NCNCA community) can easily find creative solutions that will allow for the full expression of the passion of competitive cycling for both the "elite" 1/2 masters (8% of the total NCNCA) and the 3/4/5 masters (51% of the total NCNCA), allow clubs to fill their fields and grow cycling to boot. Although there are not enough hours in the day for a single event to offer all possible fields, there are certainly enough races throughout the season to fulfill many (if not all) of those desires. My concern is that we properly represent our current demographic in such a way that will support them in fulfilling their dreams.
"pander to the elite", as opposed to "enhancing cycling"...
Those "elites" train twice as hard as you (no one person in particular), have more experience, and have taken the time to learn a lot about training.
And please don't try to say the reason you're not fast enough to race with the "elites" is because you don't have enough natural talent. Tell us the last 3 good books you read about training for bike racing. What books have you read about sports psychology? Tell us about the smart, efficient training plan you follow so you can be as fast as possible with your available time and energy. If you spent more than $3000 on your bike then how come you don't use a powermeter to make your training more effective? How many hours have you spent learning one-on-one from those "elites" so that you could improve your own ability? Ever consult with a good coach?
How many hours of smart training did you do in November? December? January? What were you doing while those "elite" riders were out training when it was wet, cold, dark, or they were training on their way to and from work even though they were tired?
I see guys you'd refer to as elites out coaching other riders (for free), putting on clinics, organizing races and standing on the sideline so that everyone else gets to race. They're also mentoring riders, organizing mentors like at the EB's, etc. You know, the kind of events that every 45+ cat 4,5 should be seeking out. Is that growing and enhancing cycling? But offer a race for them and it's "pandering to the elites"?
One way to get better at bike racing is to race with riders that are better at it than you. Ever notice how often the "elite" 45's race with faster riders in the 35's and pro 1,2's? Why do they choose to do that? Why do you want to avoid that challenge?
Of course you'd never consider not having a race for the 20 cat 1,2 women who will show up, but you don't mind ommitting the 20 cat 1,2 45's who will show up... Or offer races so the 45+ 4's can race without the 1,2,'s in their age group but then make the women 4's race with the women 1,2's? Same for juniors.
Have a look at the race schedule to learn just how many 45+ races there are within a disclipline like flat'ish criteriums, or hilly criteriums and road races. It's not that many. So let's take half those races and eliminate the 45+ 1,2's? How many races do they get now? Considering the simple fact that an individual "elite" tends to invest/contribute a fair amount into the sport this doesn't sound fair.
If you want to offer a race that is only for the 45+ not-so-fast guys then also offer one for the faster 45+ guys. Same as you do for the women, the 35's, the elite age groups... And don't forget those 55's who never get their own race.
You might say, let the 45+ 1,2's race with the pro 1,2's, guys who are mostly able to spend far more hours racing and training, or with the 35+ 1,2's. I guess the same goes for the 45+ 3,4, 5's too, yes? But the 35+ 4,5 field was full. Was it full when you pre-registered 3 weeks before the race?
It's a funny thing about bike racing, and pretty much any sport. If you win a race with only 3,4,5's you have finished ahead of some riders who aren't among the best in your age group. There's still a whole other group of riders in your age group that you didn't finish ahead of because you didn't race them. Yep, I was the fastest of the not-so-fast guys in my age group. Nothing wrong with that, but it is what it is.
If you do a race with cat 1-4 and you get 5th you not only finished ahead of those same 3,4,5's, but also ahead of some of those cat 1,2's. That is what it is.
The note on the fridge says... "What will you do today to become a better bike racer?"
Quote:Membership numbers reflect the need for this but Elite Masters Riders and Teams will fight it tooth and nail!
It's up to the sponsoring club, do you want to fill your fields ($$) and enhance/grow cycling or pander to the "elite" minority.
Hey, I kind of like Chris's idea. Let us little guys do battle in a little guy field. You can't get a draft off of us anyway.
I raced my first 45+ at the Cherry Pie (3/4) and had an excellent experience. Fast, safe, and I even had a chance at a Prime.
I sure hope more promoters provide this grouping.
Your scaring the Elite Masters with this talk.
Membership numbers reflect the need for this but Elite Masters Riders and Teams will fight it tooth and nail!
Jester, I could not agree with you more. Other than the reasons you have so eloquently stated, another great reason to offer 45+ 3/4 is that the field limit can be 100 while 45+ 4/5 are often (always?) limited to 50. My bicycle club has recognized that 35+/45+ 3/4/5 men represent nearly 72% of the total membership of the NCNCA! As a result, we are planning on catering to that demographic for our sanctioned event(s).
As I had stated in the past, more 45+ 4/5 races would be great.
As a modest 4 45+ racer, I've just learned to SUCK it up when I
race in a 45+ race. Can I beat the 1's, 2's...Not! So I race more
35+ 4/5 races. So be it. Promoters are the solution for the future
of 45+ 4/5 events. Do you want them or not? Feedback, and
participation is what it is all about.
The Jesster wrote:I don't know anything about the track, except that it's in San Jose..
It's a secret place where some guys go to become fast so they can be "criterium ubers".
You think Larry is good in criteriums? You should see him on the track. 34 National Championships so far, and only one is from the criterium. He'll tell you the track is a great place to go if you want to get fast for criteriums.
I'm not talking about the track, guys.
I don't know anything about the track, except that it's in San Jose.
Older 5's don't have to race with the youngsters - they just have to start 10 races. If it's too hairy, or if the mentors aren't keeping it safe, they can drop off the pack.
Besides, I'm not saying that ALL races should be 45+ 3/4, just that it makes more demographic sense and is indisputably more equitable than a 45+ open cat. and should thus be commonly used.
Steven, list the riders with world champion stripes who made up half the field. Let's see, there's 58 year old Mark, 50 year old Jeff who races sometimes, but mostly in the 1,2's, Larry, who never races with the masters, and then there's...? Must have been a small field.
The "ubers" that Jess refers to are not doing the masters races because they're doing the 1,2's. Look at how many riders who are not "ubers" managed to place on Friday nights in the masters races. Most of the riders I saw getting places in the masters are/were Cat 3's on the track in the early part of the year and beyond. I think virtually all of them are 3's on the road.
If you're a master who isn't competitive with the 55 to 65 year olds that are placing in the masters events on Friday nights, well...
Race at the track. The "ubers" don't usually race the masters events, unless it's a sprint event. :-)
Not really. The last Friday night I went to that had a masters event ( I did not enter it), half the field had world champion stripes on their sleeves, and half of the other half of the field had multiple district championship jerseys...
Interesting stuff Jess.
I can already here the complaints from the older 5's though. Something about
the young guys not having to go to work and support the kids on Monday.
When 5's are not in the field the race will likely be safer. When races are kept fast with 1,2's the race will likely be safer. To some 3's, doing safe(r) races is at least as important as the possibility they could place 1st vs 5th.
Race at the track. The "ubers" don't usually race the masters events, unless it's a sprint event. :-)
Rene seems good about offering alternative categories. Maybe she can offer races for 45+ 3/4's.
Another group that really gets the short end is the over 55's. They almost never get to race without the 45's except at Nat's. They do stay home from local races. "If you build it, they will come."
Jess, in your 45+ 3/4 race, how many were over 55? On an easier course, the prospect of not having to race with the fastest 45's should bring them out.
Couldn't agree with you more about the Cat 5's, Peter. Why have age divisions for 5's when they're only supposed to be racing for training? And they should all be mentored fields. Why not? The mentors are ready and willing to help. And God knows, the more training for crits, the better for everyone.
CPhipps wrote:Sounds good.
Since some climbs have a Clydesdale division, how about a "lightweight" (under 140 pounds) division for crits.
Then skinny guys who can't sprint could take home some pie. :D
Maybe then we could put on some weight!
Phipps, you win enough - don't get greedy. :lol:
Anyway, skinny = smaller frontal area: pick the right time to get off the front and use your aero advantage to stay away. I know, easier said than done. But John Hunt (not really a sprinter) won two sprinter's races that way last year, so it is possible.
@Jess - your numbers seem to make sense. Another idea might be 35+ 3/4 races instead of 35+4/5? I don't see why there should be age divisions for Cat 5 - we're all equally sketchy when we haven't done more than 10 races, doesn't matter if we're in junior high or on Geritol.