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  1. #1
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    How do I start xc racing?

    Looked into a race and it is usa cycling sanctioned, not a member, not sure how membership works. The race had categories, mens pro, cat 1, cat 2, cat 3. Do I just sign up for any cat #? (3 is like beginner, 2 sport, 1 expert?) Or is it based off a points thing (like i have heard my roadie friend talk about) where you start in the lowest (assuming it is cat 3 for mountain bikes) and then move into cat 2 when you get enough points?

  2. #2
    Can't feel my legs
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    Cat 1 requires a 1 year license, you can get a 1 day for 2&3. You can move up a class at any time, but must move up after a certain amount of high finishes. Not sure on how many of what place, I always moved up before that.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPark
    Cat 1 requires a 1 year license, you can get a 1 day for 2&3. You can move up a class at any time, but must move up after a certain amount of high finishes. Not sure on how many of what place, I always moved up before that.
    I just saw the FAQs, 5 top 5 finishes and you are forced to move up.

  4. #4
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    Generally, you would start in cat 3 (beginner) If you have been riding hard for a long time, you may be happier in cat 2. I would recommend you do your first race cat3. You will know really quickly if you are sand bagging and can move up. It is hard to move down if you pick the wrong category.

    If you know for sure you are going to be racing through the season, you can spend the least money if you start off buying an annual license. If you are unsure, you can do your first few races on a day license. Most races don't record your points on a day license. Don't buy your license untill 1/1/10 or it will expire before you race.

    All the rules for going up a class are on the rules on the USAC site but it won't really matter until the end of your first season.
    Oh sh!+ just force upgraded to cat1. Now what?
    Best thing about an ultra marathon? I just get to ride my bike for X hours!

  5. #5
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    I'm looking to get into XC Racing as well next season...what are some great resources to find races? I'm in the New England area. Thanks!

  6. #6
    CB2
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by CB2
    Awesome, thanks for the links.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by BantamSLK
    I'm looking to get into XC Racing as well next season...what are some great resources to find races? I'm in the New England area. Thanks!


    www.bikereg.com

  9. #9
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    Man, start beginner (cat3) and you might be surprised. I was surprised how fast some of the people were in beginner.

  10. #10
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    If I want the most bang for my buck (highest miles per dollar ratio) could I enter in cat 1 just so that I do more like 20+ mile races instead of 10 or 15? I don't really care about getting on the podium (yet). Or, would being slow cause people at the races to hate me if I was racing with the fast guys (i would let them by before any single track sections)?

  11. #11
    Harshing my mellow, man..
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisB Funky Flow
    If I want the most bang for my buck (highest miles per dollar ratio) could I enter in cat 1 just so that I do more like 20+ mile races instead of 10 or 15? I don't really care about getting on the podium (yet). Or, would being slow cause people at the races to hate me if I was racing with the fast guys (i would let them by before any single track sections)?
    Well, you can, but remember that once you race in Cat 1, you are in Cat 1 from then on. You can't jump up and down Categories from race to race.

  12. #12
    Lusus Naturae
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    Note there are so many varieties of MTB races out there. Most of them have different number of laps per category but some have different routes and/or additional mileage for the higher up categories. For example, the Lemurian Classic has 3 routes. However, the "beginner" route is a tiny 10 mile route that misses out on lots of fun single-track. I chose the "expert" 26 mile route to get more "bang for my buck" and it was a suffer fest!

    Aside from special cases like that, just ride Cat 3/beginner.

  13. #13
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    Reputation: jsj3831's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisB Funky Flow
    If I want the most bang for my buck (highest miles per dollar ratio) could I enter in cat 1 just so that I do more like 20+ mile races instead of 10 or 15? I don't really care about getting on the podium (yet). Or, would being slow cause people at the races to hate me if I was racing with the fast guys (i would let them by before any single track sections)?
    Nobody would hate you but you are not permitted to race Cat 1 at a USAC event unless you are a Cat 1. You can choose to be a Cat 3 or a Cat 2 but you cannot just elect to be a Cat 1. You'll need results to upgrade.

    I appreciate and agree with your value logic, especially where the course is signifcantly different (as opposed to just more laps of the same course). Miles per $! Non-USAC sanctioned races have their own rules about what Category you may enter.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by locobaylor
    Well, you can, but remember that once you race in Cat 1, you are in Cat 1 from then on. You can't jump up and down Categories from race to race.

    Valid point! CAT 2 it is.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by onlycrimson
    Man, start beginner (cat3) and you might be surprised. I was surprised how fast some of the people were in beginner.

    agreed, did my first race last october thought i was in pretty good shape and was sucking wind big time. Dont be confused cat3 is not easy if your not in shape or put your time. You have allot of respect for those guys and gals in cat2 and 1 after you finish your first race in cat3. I was dumbfounded as to how these guys could go for so long. Doing some serious base building this off season to increase my endurance which was the real weak point. Good luck to you, iam looking forward to march race when all the hard work will pay off.

    dt3

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