Beginner Class to Sport Class was easy... But....
So I have started doing some racing this year and have found that starting in the Beginner class for the first race was fine to see where I stacked up to the others in my age bracket I have settled in the Sport 35+ cat. The jump from here to expert class will definitely require a lot more dedication and mental focus for me.
I have found that years of riding off-road mx has given me an edge over the other MTB riders in my class (that have just started racing ) when it comes to bike handling but there are quite a few guys in my class that have been at this for a long time. There experience shows in how they pedal through certain areas and carry their speed through corners.
So the Sport class is where I will be hanging my hat for now. Not sure there is a question in this post but just wanted to share my goals and maybe get some feedback about moving up in class! I am thinking that I will me focusing on riding all of my current weekly rides more like a stage in a race...
Pedal.. pedal throughout the whole trail with no downtime and incorporate sprinting at the end of each stage.
Work on cornering.. on different terrain take runs and specifically work on pumping speed out of the trail and not braking in the corners.
Also as far a moving up in class is there a basic protocol that is used? Like winning a series or two or three in your class before moving up etc.?
I get confused by race classification sometimes. CAt 2, Cat 3, Sport,beginner.... Then in the BME its just Pro, Am age 19-29, Am age 30-39, Masters 40+. Don't have a problem with BME's classes, but some unity among promotors/races would be cool.
Found the UCI rules about it, I guess it breaks it down pretty good:
Mountain bike categories begin with Category 3 (beginners) and move to Category 2, Category 1 and finally Pro.
Riders may advance as quickly as they wish up to Category 2.
"The upgrading of categories will be noted on the racing license by USA Cycling. The USA Cycling official at the event may record the upgrade of a rider to Category 2. The official will then contact the USA Cycling Regional Coordinator to record the change. A rider may also contact USA Cycling by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or in writing, or their My USA Cycling page to change categories.
3-2: Five top-five finishes is a mandatory upgrade.
2-1: Five top-five finishes is a mandatory upgrade. Riders may choose to upgrade with two top-five finishes
1-Pro: Riders are eligible to be upgraded to Pro after two top-three or three top-five finishes in Elite/Open category 1 races at USA Cycling National MTB Calendar Events. "
Link to the rest of the page: Mountain Bike Category Upgrades - USA Cycling
Airborne Flight Crew
Jerry Hazard – website
I feel like if someone podiums overall in their class, they should bump themselves up the next year.
Originally Posted by Fuglio
Originally Posted by jhazard
Good info here I agree with BigSteve that an overall podium is grounds for a self bump! I hope to get to that next year!
Unfortunately there are a lot of sandbaggers out there. I bumped myself recently from Sport to Expert even though I had not won a race yet (mechanicals and one crash kept me out). Once my times were fast enough to be top 5 in Expert on a few stages it was time to move. It was frustrating as a Sport rider to see Expert level times in my class. I think once a rider posts 2-3 segment times that would get them top 5 in the next category it should be time to move. It would keep the differentiation in the categories.
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