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  1. #1
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    Which Class Should I race in?

    Hello All, I am new to this Forum, but it seems to be a great source of information. I am lucky enough to live near to the Sea Otter, and I would like to make it my first race. I want to race the XC, and I am 45. I am also a Clydesdale. My question is, should I race my Age group as a beginner, or the Clydesdale? is there such a thing as Clydesdale beginner?
    I rode the MTB fun ride last year, and it seems to be the same course. I have no illusions about my performance, I just want to compete and finish.
    Any Suggestions?

    Thanks!
    Mike Wilson
    www.ratsmtb.com

  2. #2
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    Check the distance on the races. I believe that the clydsdale is a shorter race of about 10 miles and the XC is about 19 miles. Since you are racing for the experience I would suggest the longer course. It will be a better challenge and you will get to see more of the area. However, as a caution, RIDING 19 miles and RACING 19 miles are two entirely different animals. If you intend to RACE, make sure to train at that pace or you may find yourself bonked out or cramping heavily on your 3 mile climb up "Heatbreak Hill" just before the finish line. Even if you think that your just going to take it easy durring the race, your human instinct to chase that object infront of you will kick in at some point in the race, so make sure that you are "race ready". You have plenty of time to make your decission, so just keep riding and around March you can make up your mind as to what will be the best race for your condition. Good luck, now you have a reason to keep up your conditioning throughout the winter
    "Time won't leave me as I am "

  3. #3
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    There is going to be a CAT3 and CAT 2 Clydsedale at Sea Otter this year. CAT3 (beginner) and CAT 2 (Sport). I'm not sure but I think the beginner corse is shorter that the sport class. A lot of time the beginner class starts last and you end up with lots of very slow rider in front of you and it makes it hard to pass.

  4. #4
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    Do they regulate the classes? If I have never raced the Sea Otter, can I enter any class or is it by passed performances?

  5. #5
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    BMXDad - Last year the Beginner Mens course was 19 miles, I believe the Clydesdales and Beginner Women did a shorter 12 mile course. I raced M Beg 45-49 and the 19 mile distance was a ton of fun. The fields for the Beg class were much larger than the Clydesdales.

    Cattledog - I can only speak to the XC races, cause that is what I do. If you don't have a license, you can enter the Beginner or Sport class. Which I believe have now been renamed to Cat3 (Beg) and Cat2 (Sport).

  6. #6
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    FYI, the cydlesdales beginner class did the full 19 mile course last year. The only difference is that we are fatter. If you are over 200 lbs and are either a beginner or sport. Hang with us in the cydlesdale group. Us FAT people have to stay together, how many other sports allow you to be FAT and have your own class. Nothing is worse than entering a race and sitting next to you is someone who weighs what you did in 5th grade (110 LBS).

    EMBRACE YOUR FATTNESS and get ready for a great race.

  7. #7
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    Looks like this year the Beg Clydesdales are running the full 19mi loop per the website.

    Last year (2008) the Beginner Clydesdale did the shorter (12 mile?) course. I recall talking to someone in this group who told me this. If you look at the results it is obvious. 1:06 was the winning time in the Beg Clysdesdales. Not likely they did 19mi in this time. It took the Pro's 2:21 to do 2 laps.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by worthy_4242
    FYI, the cydlesdales beginner class did the full 19 mile course last year. The only difference is that we are fatter. If you are over 200 lbs and are either a beginner or sport. Hang with us in the cydlesdale group. Us FAT people have to stay together, how many other sports allow you to be FAT and have your own class. Nothing is worse than entering a race and sitting next to you is someone who weighs what you did in 5th grade (110 LBS).

    EMBRACE YOUR FATTNESS and get ready for a great race.

    The clydes are machines in every race I have been to, far from beginner! I'm 2 bills but beginner for me..

    I don't train, don't have time to so I am racing cold - ride once a month for about 5 miles. Weee this will be fun

  9. #9
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    ... and if we just ... Thanks for the help!

    I am racing in the beginner group, 45-49. My thinking was I will take my chances with my own age class, as opposed to the Clydesdales, which has no age limitations. I have ridden the course twice, and my goal is 2:15, which I think I can achieve...

    I probably won't win, but I will have as much fun as anybody on the course.

    Will post results after the race.

    Mike


    www.ratsmtb.com
    "Do not upgrade your ride...Ride up grades"
    -Eddy Merckx

  10. #10
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    ... and if we just ... First Race Follow up

    Hello all, thanks for all the advice. I thought I would report back on my race.

    I did race the Cat 3 45-49 race, and I am pretty sure the field was about 85. I thought I would not be able to stay with all the skinnies, but I was able to ride with most of them, and I did finish with a time of 2:10, which was 5 minutes faster than my goal. This put me in about 40th place, depending on when you check the results. The course was fine, hardly any technical stuff, and plenty of room to pass, (or be passed) well, except for the one guy who kept shouting out "55-59" on the trail behind me. Yes the Clydesdale Wide Body instinct kicked in for him, What a jerk! Most of the riders were cool, and would move over to let you pass, and I would do the same, as long as they did not act like the last corner of a NASCAR race, I mean, it's not like there was anybody there with a check at the finish line.
    I was surprised at how much traffic there was. The single track climbs pretty much was nose to tail from the bottom to the top, but at least when it got to the fire roads it was all good.
    I was disappointed at only having a single water stop. I was out of water by mile 15, and that cost me some time. I had elected not to carry a camelback, and thought I would be OK, which I was, but would have been better with one more water stop. I suppose they would have told me had I asked them where the aid station(s) were, but I did not think to ask. I think next time I will just take 2 bottles at the water stop.

    In all, the experience was great, more fun than I expected, and I had a great time. Of course, the beautiful weather was a big help as well. Look for me again in 2010, maybe I can break 2 hours!

    Thanks Again,

    Mike Wilson
    "Do not upgrade your ride...Ride up grades"
    -Eddy Merckx

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