USA Cycling Revises Cyclocross Upgrade Criteria, Adds Category 5 Field
COLORADO SPRINGS, COLORADO – USA Cycling on Wednesday announced that it has amended rule 1E6, which outlines upgrades and downgrades for cyclocross racers.
Beginning in 2013, all newly-licensed riders will begin as a category 5 racer. Any riders who will be renewing from 2013 forward will maintain the category from the previous year. A category 5 rider will mandatorily be upgraded to a category 4 rider after competing in 10 races. Once a rider becomes a category 4 rider, he or she faces voluntary or mandatory upgrades.
A category 4 rider can voluntarily be upgraded to a category 3 rider after earning 10 points. A category 4 rider faces mandatory upgrade after accruing 15 points or two wins in a field of at least 30 competitors. A category 3 rider can upgrade to a category 2 rider after amassing 15 points. A category 3 rider is mandatorily upgraded to category 2 after collecting 20 points or winning two races with at least 30 competitors. A category 2 rider can elect to be upgraded to category 1 after totaling 20 points. A category 2 rider will face mandatory upgrade after accruing 25 points or two wins in a 40-rider field.
Juniors riders are exempt from the mandatory upgrades beginning at category 4.
Points awarded for cyclocross races:
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below!
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I think this is a HUGE improvement over the previously announced policy which mandated Cat 4 to Cat 3 CX upgrade after simply PARTICIPATING in 10 Cat 4 cyclocross races. The new policy recognizes that MANY of us are still Cat 4s, not because we lack experience, but because that is who we are, within the context and limitations of our own lives. And at the same time, it forces those who demonstrate that they both have the fitness and skills to have PLACED in multiple races to challenge themselves in the higher category.
@cyclocross I'm not a race organiser but I think they'll just get combined with the cat 4 field. No difference.
@cyclocross a new cat 5 category would maybe get me back to a mid pack finish after not racing for 3 years!
If they don't then I'm assuming they'd use 5 as 4 in women like road and you could still upgrade on experience. We'll see soon I guess!
Christie...out here at least I think they are adding a cat 5 women category. I'm a bad 3 so now ill probably be a really bad 3 that should be a 4!
It is not clear to me why juniors are exempt from mandatory upgrades. The requirements for a mandatory upgrade seem adequately rigorous to prevent someone from being in a confidence crushing field.
I'm glad to see more categories, parallel to road racing, but I'm skeptical that it will actually make a difference at local races. The 4's and 5's will race together as they always have in the "C" race, while the "B" race will be 3's and 4's? So as a mid-pack Cat 4 license holder, do I get to choose my race? Or will the "C" race be Cat 5 only, which is exactly the way it is now? I think the system is a bit skewed, in that just because you've been racing a long time (like myself) doesn't mean you're any faster. There are plenty of people in their first-ever race that are faster than I am. It's actually turned me off to the sport quite a bit.
Women are still cat 1-4 per Rule 1D1. Unless I'm missing something, the only way to upgrade from Cat 4 to Cat 3 under the new rule is by points -- there's no longer a way for women to upgrade based on race experience.
but are race organizers goin to have separate CAT 4 & CAT 5 fields or will they be combined into CAT 4/5 fields???
@sydspinnin With mandatory upgrades, you could easily have a 15 year old or younger racing in the 1/2 race. They only have to win two cat 3 races. To me that could be detrimental for a few reasons. National races for their age would be at or under 40 minutes. For some the extra time of a 1/2 race is good, for others not so much. Also, the goal for the juniors is to teach them how to win races. The jump from winning a couple of cat 3 races to finishing mid pack in the 1/2s could be very deflating to a teenager. These kids are the future of our sport and turning them into winners is a huge boost for their confidence. Learning how to ride at the front of a race is a wonderful learning experience. Kicking the butts of the 20-40 year olds is another plus for them. Remember they are teenagers. Faster than us, but still just kids.