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Old 02-03-07, 04:22 PM   #1
LanceFanBoy
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Team or No Team?

I'm a Cat 5 Racer with 2 races under my belt from late season last year. I train regularly during the winter, but that is a point that doesn't fit into the equation really.

I've been debating for the last 2 months whether I should try and join a team or just be really active in my LBS events and Local Club Events and learn from training crits and group rides and books. Plus the only real actively recruiting team here in Buffalo is sponsored by a LBS just outside of Buffalo thats a "competitor" of the LBS that I go to which is 5 minutes away from me. That's on my mind too, the whole "sponsor" loyalty thing. I may just want to wait out until I can join a team thats not binded to shop loyalty.

So my choices are:

Ride with a team (sponsored by the other LBS)

Get myself a neat little blank jersey set and ride solo this year in the 4/5s.

I'm leaning towards riding solo this year so I can buy from where I want, train when I want, and enter the races that I want, but I would appreciate input from people who have been in this situation before. Thanks!
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Old 02-03-07, 04:35 PM   #2
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Do they still charge an unattached fee at races? If so, that's reason enough to join a team right there. If your favorite LBS doesn't sponsor a team at the moment, then it's not that big of a deal to them. I raced on a team sponsored by one shop but still shopped at my LBS as well. I wouldn't make a habit of wearing my team jersey on training rides when I'd be stopping by my LBS, but other than that, it's no problem really. Look at the pros using rebadged saddles.
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Old 02-03-07, 04:39 PM   #3
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A good club, even a loosely-affiliated one, is a valuable resource, and makes training/racing more fun. There's also a certain confidence boost in knowing you have teammates, even if there's little, if any, true team strategy going on for lower-cat boys like us.

I've found that my team has been a great chance to meet new people, stay motivated to train, and have a lot more fun at races. And the team kit is pretty sharp too.
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Old 02-03-07, 05:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LanceFanBoy

I'm leaning towards riding solo this year so I can buy from where I want, train when I want, and enter the races that I want, but I would appreciate input from people who have been in this situation before. Thanks!


I'm pretty sure your team won't dictate any of the above. As a matter of fact, they probably won't care about any of the above, unless you brag about NOT buying stuff from that shop.
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Old 02-03-07, 05:31 PM   #5
cslone
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I would do it. You could potentially learn a TON from the upper guys. Also making friends and connections in racign is always a plus.
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Old 02-03-07, 08:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LanceFanBoy
I'm a Cat 5 Racer with 2 races under my belt from late season last year. I train regularly during the winter, but that is a point that doesn't fit into the equation really.

I've been debating for the last 2 months whether I should try and join a team or just be really active in my LBS events and Local Club Events and learn from training crits and group rides and books. Plus the only real actively recruiting team here in Buffalo is sponsored by a LBS just outside of Buffalo thats a "competitor" of the LBS that I go to which is 5 minutes away from me. That's on my mind too, the whole "sponsor" loyalty thing. I may just want to wait out until I can join a team thats not binded to shop loyalty.

So my choices are:

Ride with a team (sponsored by the other LBS)

Get myself a neat little blank jersey set and ride solo this year in the 4/5s.

I'm leaning towards riding solo this year so I can buy from where I want, train when I want, and enter the races that I want, but I would appreciate input from people who have been in this situation before. Thanks!

I would suggest starting out solo and trying to find a team that fits you as opposed to just joining a team that is looking for riders. As an upstate ny racer I know there are a few teams from buffalo that race a lot but unless there are some experienced racers willing to help out the new guys, joining a team at the cat 5 level is really just about getting a jersey and a shop discount... good luck

wayne
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Old 02-03-07, 08:43 PM   #7
merlinextraligh
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Doing a race today with no teamates,and trying to cover the guy who eventually won by myself all day,and had 8 teamates, my vote is in favor of joining a team.
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