Carrying over from the e-mail group....
If you want to reward the best rider and best team, points gently descending down to 15th place is just plain dumb.
Lets' take a case in point: Echelon Gran Fondo Masters Team.
They won the BAT last year in the 45+ 1/2/3's by virtue of a slew of top performances in the region. And rightfully so; they rode great.
But they only had four racers accruing all their points - really only two for the majority of the season, since Mike Pugh stopped racing early and Dirk Himley started late.
But I don't think anyone can legitimately contest that they earned the BAT.
Same results this season? They would be overwhelmed by mammoth teams like Davis, Webcor, San Jose, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley who have armies to fill the top 15. Is anyone really claiming that any of those teams was "better" last year in the 45's than Echelon?
Fine, give points to 10th or even 15th place if you must, as if finishing 10th to 15th means anything. But more heavily weight the podium placings and especially the winner.
Haven't the pros taught us anything? HTC is the best team out there. Because they ride for the team, and do it well. Winning the race and having your teammates finish last is the mark of the BEST bike racing team.
Otherwise, you are simply promoting groups of riders who race for themselves but wear a matching kit. (Which seems to be en vogue in this region, except in the P/1/2 and 35+ 1/2/3.) Is that really the goal? To create big teams? Instead of honoring teams like Echelon who race tactically with a few guys and get results?? Puhleeeeze...