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  1. #1
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    Sea Otter Sandbaggers

    I was just checking results from last year and this guy won Cat 3, 40 - 44 and had a better time than the winner of the Cat 2, 40 - 44.

    We should call out all of these sandbaggers.
    Last edited by surfstar1; 08-17-2010 at 01:16 PM.

  2. #2
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    After having looked at the results for cat 2 and 3, almost all of the podium winners in Cat 3 would have been podium winners in their respective cat 2 class. What a joke these peopls are.

    Can't the cycling governing body govern this type of ******ry?

  3. #3
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    It happens at every race you go to. Go to a USAC sanctioned race and you'll get beat by a guy that races twice a year and doesn't earn the points to move up. Go to an unsanctioned race and you'll get beat by some guy that thinks winning sport by 10 minutes is cooler than finishing mid-pack in expert. Any racing you do has this problem.
    i ride bikes

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    I raced Jetski's (Standups) for 10 years. You have the same things happen.

    There are those rare occassions when you got a racer who is just progressing really fast and before you are a quarter of the way though the season they are absolutly smoking everybody, even people in the class above them. Hopefully those like that step up.

    There was one kid that I was always racing against back in 2004 that was really fast, I ran Novice Ski and this kid was really fast. I did not see him over the next few years, He pops back up once or twice in 2006 and then again I see him at the Nationals in 2008 still racing in the Novice Class. I still keep up with it but have not raced in 2 years, I know last year he was still racing in Novice. That kid is a sandbagger.
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  5. #5
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    How do you figure it's "sandbagging"?
    If I entered my first local race I'd have to enter sport or a beginner class, and yet at the age of 46, I'm faster than some of the younger people that show up and race in faster classes of racing.
    For me that would be in Super D.
    I'm saying this, because some of them might be getting "pigeon holed". IE, it might be the only class they fit into, based on the classification system used.

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    Sandbagging is when you race in a class well below your level... Period...

    Sign up for the class where you fell your level of riding is equal to.

    If an average lap is 45 minutes for a beginner/novice and you do it at 30 minutes and can kick out 2 or 3 laps around the same time then your not a beginner.
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  7. #7
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    This happens all the time in the Texas TMBRA series. They come in within the top three in the Cat2 group at the beginning of the year and later avoid placing high or racing at all when they see they are not going to win the championship jersey. Their times are not even in the ballbark of other Cat2s. I was happy to go to Cat1 on my third season. Got my rear kicked at first (a great time I may add), but since then I've moved slowly up in the top ten. Sandbaggers are often clueless how silly they look on the podium, year after year after year...

  8. #8
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    It also sounds like there are a few people who are bitter because they can't be the fastest beginner because there are faster people in the class.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ericmopar
    How do you figure it's "sandbagging"?
    If I entered my first local race I'd have to enter sport or a beginner class, and yet at the age of 46, I'm faster than some of the younger people that show up and race in faster classes of racing.
    For me that would be in Super D.
    I'm saying this, because some of them might be getting "pigeon holed". IE, it might be the only class they fit into, based on the classification system used.

    Eric.
    Partly there is a flaw in the USAC points system. Someone such as yourself would have to enter the beginner class if my memory is correct. I haven't done a USAC mountain bike race since I was a beginner. That isn't your fault. Now if you went to an unsanctioned race where you could enter the sport or expert yet entered beginner, thats where the problem is. Personally, I'm hoping to cat up next year out (road racing).
    i ride bikes

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    Quote Originally Posted by hillbilly_hank
    Partly there is a flaw in the USAC points system. Someone such as yourself would have to enter the beginner class if my memory is correct. I haven't done a USAC mountain bike race since I was a beginner. That isn't your fault. Now if you went to an unsanctioned race where you could enter the sport or expert yet entered beginner, thats where the problem is. Personally, I'm hoping to cat up next year out (road racing).
    I believe only road racing requires people to start at the lowest level. In mountain biking anyone can choose to race cat 2 and I believe it's very easy to petition to race cat 1 (not sure a petition is even necessary). One problem is people may not race cat 1 on a temporary license. So fast guys who only want to race once or twice a year and don't want to buy a yearly license must race cat 2. I'd say they're still sandbagging, but there is a reason behind it.

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    I think the cat 2 vs cat 3 classes have different courses so if cat 2 has to do 30 miles instead of 20, it would make sense that the cat 3 time is faster.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by scaryfast
    I think the cat 2 vs cat 3 classes have different courses so if cat 2 has to do 30 miles instead of 20, it would make sense that the cat 3 time is faster.
    I believe they only dramatically shortened the course for Cat 3 vs Cat 2 this year.
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  13. #13
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    I sandbag the pros. Wait.. On a serious note, every time I race SOC, I witness some of the most ridiculous sandbagging. I don't get it. I would rather be midpack cat 1 than standing on a podium representing a cat I don't belong in.

  14. #14
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    It would be nice if everyone raced the same distance. Then if you really care you can ignore you place within Cat and just pay attention to your place overall.

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    Cat 1 License

    I race Cat 1 and have friends who do too. Some of those friends are racing Cat 2 this year because you are not allowed to race Cat 1 on a one day license.

    The full year license will add $75+ to your race entry fee. Not worth it if you only do one race per year.

    My $.02

  16. #16
    mnoutain bkie rdier
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    Quote Originally Posted by edimm
    I race Cat 1 and have friends who do too. Some of those friends are racing Cat 2 this year because you are not allowed to race Cat 1 on a one day license.

    The full year license will add $75+ to your race entry fee. Not worth it if you only do one race per year.

    My $.02

    Cat 1's who only race once a year? Wow. I wish I was that gifted!

    Also, JDM makes a good point, but some Cat 3's would probably struggle with the Cat 1 distances perhaps..

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    I didn't know you could race down a category? Once you upgrade, I thought you were locked in to that category, hmmm, what do I know

    I do know that in the Cat2 this year, they have drasticaly increased everyone's chance of getting a podium. They have narrowed down the age-groups, for instance, instead of the traditional 40-44, they have now created the 40-42 age group. This allows for many more medals awarded. I don't think they did that for Cat1 though.

    I am heading over to the course this weekend to check it out. Will bring my Garmin too!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydbyk
    I would rather be midpack cat 1 than standing on a podium representing a cat I don't belong in.
    Amen brother.

    Q

  19. #19
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    I keep hearing all this talk of sandbagging going on, and that I might be accused of it. I have NEVER raced before. Not once. I am signed up for the Cat 3 race at Sea Otter for the Cross-Country race and already people are warning me that if I win I will be labeled a “sandbagger”. Is this what the winners in Cat 3 always get to hear or something??? This will be the first race I have ever participated in. Should I purposely lose my first-ever race if there is a snowball’s chance in hell that I might be a semi-decent rider, or should I not give a rat’s ass what other people think??? I am confused now. I just turned 40 last year, had smoked cigarettes for 20 years (quit in 2006), and never really got serious about cycling until I started to commute to/from work back in the winter of 2007, otherwise my only “training” is just riding hard up the hills on my 47.8 pound mountain bike almost every day. Am I supposed to quit while I am ahead??? What gives?
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  20. #20
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    Leo, we'll find out this weekend what cat you belong in, won't we.
    I"ll be at NVDC in Cat3. I"m kinda the opposite of you... been racing for about 3-4 years now but never really ride enough or train enough to do anything better than the bottom 10-15% of Cat2. However, I do have race experience and course knowledge, so that comes in handy.

    Don't worry about the sandbagging label. If people start heckling you on the podium, you'll quickly move up to avoid the embarrassment.

  21. #21
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    The top 3 CAT II will be Pros. Happens every year.

    I half blame USA cycling because you cant get a one day licence for CAT I and you have to apply to move from CAT II to CAT I.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leopold Porkstacker
    I keep hearing all this talk of sandbagging going on, and that I might be accused of it. I have NEVER raced before. Not once. I am signed up for the Cat 3 race at Sea Otter for the Cross-Country race and already people are warning me that if I win I will be labeled a “sandbagger”. Is this what the winners in Cat 3 always get to hear or something??? This will be the first race I have ever participated in. Should I purposely lose my first-ever race if there is a snowball’s chance in hell that I might be a semi-decent rider, or should I not give a rat’s ass what other people think??? I am confused now. I just turned 40 last year, had smoked cigarettes for 20 years (quit in 2006), and never really got serious about cycling until I started to commute to/from work back in the winter of 2007, otherwise my only “training” is just riding hard up the hills on my 47.8 pound mountain bike almost every day. Am I supposed to quit while I am ahead??? What gives?
    You will be fine as a Cat 3 for this one. Loads of people for Otter. When you find yourself passing too many slow riders then you will know it's time to move up to Cat 2. If you are however tried and convicted of sandbagging.....I will no longer hire you / bribe you with coffee cards as a strava data collector on my rides !
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydbyk
    Cat 1's who only race once a year? Wow. I wish I was that gifted!

    Also, JDM makes a good point, but some Cat 3's would probably struggle with the Cat 1 distances perhaps..
    Same situation here. We race up in Oregon, cat 1, where most races a usac license is not required. Why spend an extra $75 or whatever it is just for 1 race? SOC is expensive to begin with, not to mention our travel expenses.
    Thus, Cat II

  24. #24
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    I am asking without any offense meant and I don't know how to ask "do you have to race?" without being rude; but I assume passing the riders of a lower category shouldn't be as fun as racing in your category, right?

    There must be other reasons that I am missing here. (I am a person who races once a year, only for fun, and finish consistently at the bottom 20% of Cat 2 SS.) For example, there may be a requirement of having to race a certain number of races a year. Is that it?

    Thank you,
    Ali

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancient rascal
    You will be fine as a Cat 3 for this one. Loads of people for Otter. When you find yourself passing too many slow riders then you will know it's time to move up to Cat 2. If you are however tried and convicted of sandbagging.....I will no longer hire you / bribe you with coffee cards as a strava data collector on my rides !
    Actually… http://web2.puc.edu/Pioneers/NVDC/11%20results.htm

    Yes, I placed FIRST overall in Category 3 men’s at the Napa Valley Dirt Classic 2011… within all age groups (I even passed up a substantial number of the Cat 2s within the 35-44 range). So, I need to find out (sooner than later) from the Sea Otter people if I can change from Category 3 to Category 2… otherwise I will have to purposely ride my heavy-ass 47+ pound Surly 1x1 3" wide tire 32x20 singlespeed bike to make up for any “sandbagging” in Category 3. The second place finisher within my category (35-44) was six minutes behind me, so that equates to Category 2 times, methinks. I want to be fair to everyone, yes, I was SIX minutes quicker, that seems a bit unreasonable.

    Yes, this race felt too easy, I feel a bit of guilt, almost shame… yet it was my FIRST RACE EVER, so I think I need to just upgrade to Cat 2 and move on.
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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydbyk
    Cat 1's who only race once a year? Wow. I wish I was that gifted!

    Also, JDM makes a good point, but some Cat 3's would probably struggle with the Cat 1 distances perhaps..
    yah really.... Cat 2 is a 20 mile loop and Cat 1 is 40... ouch. 40 miles. No wonder the Cat 2 races are filled with sandbaggers, they dont want to do a 40 mile race!.... I race Expert in a local series and some other stuff and the races are typically 25-28 miles or so...

    Q

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leopold Porkstacker
    Actually… http://web2.puc.edu/Pioneers/NVDC/11%20results.htm

    Yes, I placed FIRST overall in Category 3 men’s at the Napa Valley Dirt Classic 2011… within all age groups (I even passed up a substantial number of the Cat 2s within the 35-44 range). So, I need to find out (sooner than later) from the Sea Otter people if I can change from Category 3 to Category 2… otherwise I will have to purposely ride my heavy-ass 47+ pound Surly 1x1 3" wide tire 32x20 singlespeed bike to make up for any “sandbagging” in Category 3. The second place finisher within my category (35-44) was six minutes behind me, so that equates to Category 2 times, methinks. I want to be fair to everyone, yes, I was SIX minutes quicker, that seems a bit unreasonable.

    Yes, this race felt too easy, I feel a bit of guilt, almost shame… yet it was my FIRST RACE EVER, so I think I need to just upgrade to Cat 2 and move on.

    Seems like you should have entered Cat 2 for SOC then.. They should let you change it when you get (day BEFORE race) there or perhaps over the phone??

  28. #28
    mnoutain bkie rdier
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    Anyone notice how they broke the age groups up even more to lower the numbers in each field?? I called and asked what was up with that. I kinda got used to the 70+ riders per field thing and thought "that is what makes winning SOC so special".

    Anyways, the guy said "It increases your odds of standing on the podium now!!"

  29. #29
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    Hey Leopold you and I in same Cat 2 40-42 group...if you can change it. Will be fun to meet you and ride together (till you dust me probably!) And I do recommend you change it. Not because of sandbagging but just because you will get more out of it competing with the faster riders.

    What bike you using?
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    Agreed...make it longer. I want to know death is an option

  30. #30
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    Leo, this is my 18th year racing xc, I race Sport Clydesdale or Sport age 50, and you beat me at NVDC by 21 minutes. If I'm being honest, I'm jealous when guys say "it was my first race and I got 1st place!" What's your secret? Years ago, roadies would show up at Sea Otter and race beginner xc and blow away the field, now it's really fit/fast guys who race 1x a year and technically are beginner racers. I've stopped worrying about sandbaggers, and just try to beat guys in my category who I've been racing against for a decade or more. Good luck next Sunday!
    Every day above ground is a great day!

  31. #31
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    Yep, they are going to let me “upgrade” to Cat 2. I am going there Thursday to pick up my registration information, so I have been informed that I can change things there.

    I will be riding Menso DeJong’s old Santa Cruz Superlight (sort of a grey/silver colour). This bike won the Sea Otter twice with him at the helm, I will just be happy to get within the top 20, from the sounds of the Cat 1 sandbagging rumours around here.
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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradmtb
    Leo, this is my 18th year racing xc, I race Sport Clydesdale or Sport age 50, and you beat me at NVDC by 21 minutes. If I'm being honest, I'm jealous when guys say "it was my first race and I got 1st place!" What's your secret? Years ago, roadies would show up at Sea Otter and race beginner xc and blow away the field, now it's really fit/fast guys who race 1x a year and technically are beginner racers. I've stopped worrying about sandbaggers, and just try to beat guys in my category who I've been racing against for a decade or more. Good luck next Sunday!
    Thanks for the compliments. Here is my only reasoning for my performance—my training rides in March, 96% of them having been ridden on a sub-50 pound bike with heavy 65mm wide rims:

    http://www.strava.com/komchallenge/l.../results/march
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  33. #33
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    Leo, I forgot to mention that up until last Sea Otter, I was riding Menso's old SC Blur LT. I still race it at Downieville. Menso convinced me to check out the SC Tallboy, I did, and now I've got a new XXL Tallboy to race next Sunday. It was a sweet ride at NVDC. He's one of the few xc racers taller than me (6'4")
    Every day above ground is a great day!

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    Leo, I checked out your strava March rides...that's nuts. How on earth can you do back to back to back 3-4 hour rides on a 40lb bike in the hills. 12-16 hour weeks vs. my 6-8 hours. So that's what it takes to podium...I think I'll stay mid-pack sport.
    Every day above ground is a great day!

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradmtb
    Leo, I checked out your strava March rides...that's nuts. How on earth can you do back to back to back 3-4 hour rides on a 40lb bike in the hills. 12-16 hour weeks vs. my 6-8 hours. So that's what it takes to podium...I think I'll stay mid-pack sport.
    Well, I’ve been unemployed for quite some time with nothing better to do while waiting for “recruiters” to call me back for interviews that have never happened. My goal for March was to ride every day, and to see if I could break 100,000 feet in a month, which I eventually managed. Several of those rides were done while hung over. I guess it turned out to not be all for nothing.
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  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydbyk
    Cat 1's who only race once a year? Wow. I wish I was that gifted!

    Also, JDM makes a good point, but some Cat 3's would probably struggle with the Cat 1 distances perhaps..
    As was pointed out, its racing USAC races once a year. Or even 3-4 USAC races a year. Why pay $75 for a license if you can get 3-4 one day licenses at $10 each. Most of the races around here aren't USAC, in fact when I do an almost full season, I think I hit 3 USAC races. But I'm not anywhere near Cat1 anyways. I benefit from those forced to sanbag in Cat2, and, so goes it. I'm not gonna get my panties in a bunch (as long as I beat my time from last year).

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydbyk
    ...I would rather be midpack cat 1 than standing on a podium representing a cat I don't belong in.
    +1 to that man. I could still be racing Expert in my local series (non-USAC), but decided to cat up to the Elite/Pro Open Class because the one year I raced expert I landed on the podium or in the top 5 in every race I did. I could have stayed to win the series, but racing against my Pro friends is much more fun. Plus I'm used to mid-pack finishes after two seasons of 'cross...

    People who sandbag are lame and should be pubicly ridiculed at all possible moments.
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  38. #38
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    So, it sounds like riding a lot is a good training plan....or at least better than sitting on the couch all winter and trying to see how many nutter butters I could put in my mouth at one time....
    I'll be Cat 2 since they don't have the cat 3 SS anymore.....I'll be the guy pushing when all the other SSers are pedaling uphill.....pretty sure I'm not sandbagging
    Should be a really fun day though...

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by rzims
    I'll be Cat 2 since they don't have the cat 3 SS anymore.....I'll be the guy pushing when all the other SSers are pedaling uphill.....pretty sure I'm not sandbagging
    Should be a really fun day though...
    I do the majority of my training rides on a roughly 47 pound bike with a 32x20 singlespeed setup. If it won’t make you stronger, it will drive you freakin’ nuts; I think I might be a little bit of both. But I am not crazy enough (yet) to race in the singlespeed category. You, sir, are truly nuts, and that is great!
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  40. #40
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    Wow, that was a fun race (except for all the lame flat smooth sections). I started the race 1 minute or so late, and had to catch up to the rest of the pack. I only managed 17th place, but then was happy to discover that there were 62 entries (Cat 2 40-42). http://www.seaotterclassic.com/racer...2011/XC125.pdf

    I guess that’s an OK finish for my second time ever racing. I am happy with having placed 17th after having started 1 minute behind the actual start.
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    I love reading all the cry baby comments about sandbagging. Here is a tip. Get faster and shut up. Those that cry are those usually that just missed the podium. Too bad someone was faster. Just for fun I googled each of the top guys in 4 classes close to me. Not one did a Cat 1 race and not one appeared in any cat 2 races last year. Guess what? These are guys that train hard and spend the year at Cat2. Some might not have the wins to upgrade or some might be racing first time mountain and are finishing out a season.

    A sandbagger is NOT someone that is faster then you which most you crying here apparently think. Let's see where these winners race next year. Cat2? Then yes, sandbagger. Cat1? Then all part of the cycle of racing.

    Looking at the top guys. Does anyone know one that cat'ed down from races? Does anyone know someone that has been winning year in and year out and not cat'ed up? Or are you all just guessing to bad mouth so it makes your place on the results feel better? Serious question.

  42. #42
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    Winning a cat 2 or cat 3 race is nice once or twice, when you finally achieve that goal after years of working your way up the standings and training hard for it. After that it's better to upgrade and race against some real competition. The USAC license is only $50, and with it you support bike racing in the USA, get some additional race accident insurance and they keep track of your performance in races. I'd say pay the $50 and upgade when your friends call you a sandbagger.
    Also known as Menso's dad.

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    The wife raced Cat 1 at Sea Otter this year. Her first USAC race, ever. They were not going to give her a Cat 1 license, so she petitioned, submitted her resume and was granted Cat 1 status. It's not that she would have minded racing Cat 2, but we travelled from a long way away and there were 3 big reasons for her to Cat up.

    1. Her race was on Friday and we could miss the big crowds and travel would be better.
    2. She didn't have to deal with the riff-raff in Cat 2 or 3 XC.
    3. It's where she belonged, period.

    If you belong in Cat 1, suck it up, petition, pay the extra fee or don't race it.

    She did not win, yet finished mid pack Cat 1.

  44. #44
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    Just curious...if you wanna miss the crowds and the "riff-raff" on your first race why even come and race at Sea Otter?
    Every day above ground is a great day!

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradmtb
    Just curious...if you wanna miss the crowds and the "riff-raff" on your first race why even come and race at Sea Otter?
    Regardless, if Cat 1 was raced on Sunday afternoon she would have easily dealt with the crowds. It was a nice race for her. It was awesome weather and she did awesome in her 1st non-local race.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tupelo
    The wife raced Cat 1 at Sea Otter this year. Her first USAC race, ever. They were not going to give her a Cat 1 license, so she petitioned, submitted her resume and was granted Cat 1 status. It's not that she would have minded racing Cat 2, but we travelled from a long way away and there were 3 big reasons for her to Cat up.

    1. Her race was on Friday and we could miss the big crowds and travel would be better.
    2. She didn't have to deal with the riff-raff in Cat 2 or 3 XC.
    3. It's where she belonged, period.

    If you belong in Cat 1, suck it up, petition, pay the extra fee or don't race it.

    She did not win, yet finished mid pack Cat 1.
    thumbs up.

    Q

  47. #47
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    Cat 3 Times

    I raced two years ago at SOC and scored an eighth place finish in Cat 3, it was my first race. It was a 1:56. Did they change the course over the past two years to have someone score a 1:16???? Or did the guys in Cat 3 just all of sudden start posting recording times while i've been out of racing for awhile? Interested to see if the course has gotten easier for Cat 3 guys and girls.

  48. #48
    tandemtoughie
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    Quote Originally Posted by quicklaps
    yah really.... Cat 2 is a 20 mile loop and Cat 1 is 40... ouch. 40 miles. No wonder the Cat 2 races are filled with sandbaggers, they dont want to do a 40 mile race!.... I race Expert in a local series and some other stuff and the races are typically 25-28 miles or so...

    Q
    What if you are better at distance? Personally I like a longer race, the attrition gives a rider who trains and is persistent a valid chance of being on the podium. These one day wonders are not real racers. I think all categories should race the same course (cept the pros) and then have the smaller age groups..more medals. To be honest 14 miles is like a sprint! 25 plus now you are talking....mtbxc. What do y'all think?

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryanc104
    I raced two years ago at SOC and scored an eighth place finish in Cat 3, it was my first race. It was a 1:56. Did they change the course over the past two years to have someone score a 1:16???? Or did the guys in Cat 3 just all of sudden start posting recording times while i've been out of racing for awhile? Interested to see if the course has gotten easier for Cat 3 guys and girls.
    yes changed. shorter.

    Q

  50. #50
    aka dan51
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    I came in 29th of 41 in my category. Pretty sure there were 28 sandbaggers in the age group, including that grrrah guy.

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