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Old 09-27-07, 04:16 PM   #1
sbskates
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join large race team vs small any preference?

i am in a great club huhge race team etc. have been thinking of maybe it would be nicer to be in a smaller team 5-10 guys . any thoughts? pros cons etc.
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Old 09-27-07, 05:00 PM   #2
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What do you like, hate about your team now?
What do you expect to gain by going to a smaller team?
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Old 09-27-07, 05:31 PM   #3
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If you want five teammates every weekend, you need three times that on your team to cover all the no shows.
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Old 09-27-07, 06:04 PM   #4
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If you want five teammates every weekend, you need three times that on your team to cover all the no shows.
+some more for the differences in categories. Does lining with a stranger in the same jersey really make him your TEAMmate? I vote for smaller teams, but on my small team, the most teammate I've had in a race is 2, occasionally 1, most of the time none.
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Old 09-28-07, 05:22 AM   #5
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great question

bigger teams can sometimes offer more benefits when it comes to training and clinics but you can end up feeling anonymous and competing against team mates often instead of working together. In my area its not uncommon to show up to a race and have multiple teams with 10 guys each in the cat 4 race.
With a lot more guys on a team there is a good chance there are a lot of training rides to go on and a good spread of talent to work with so it may be easier to get to be a better racers quickly.

smaller teams can be a lot closer which can make for better racing since you know each others styles, stregths, etc. At the same time you may have to race alone or with fewer numbers and team funding is most likely not enough to do some of the stuff the bigger clubs do. There is probably less organized training rides and you might have to be a lot more self motivated to become a better racer since you may not be working with others as often.

I think I would prefer to be on a smaller but some what serious team since I would rather know the majority of my team mates fairly well. I also dread the thought of showing up to race after race with 10 team mates and meeting half of them for the first time.
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Old 09-28-07, 06:59 AM   #6
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It looks like I'll be racing for a pretty big team next season. Like 250 people in the club.

I'll be racing with 5-8 of them on a regular basis.

It really depends how you define "team".

People who wear the same jersey? Or dudes who sweat, bleed and cry with you?
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Old 09-28-07, 08:39 AM   #7
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Personally I'd rather train and race with 4-5 close friends, as opposed to race with a "team" where I don't know half the people wearing my same jersey. My club has like 40 active racers; of those, I consider myself "team mates" with only 3-4 people.
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Old 09-28-07, 08:46 AM   #8
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I've done both, small and large. I prefer large. Funny thing is the team i'm on now is the team i swore back in the 90's to never join. They always seemed like the evil empire to me back then. Bad judgement on my part. I shoulda joined them straight away. Great team, great program, great people.
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Old 09-29-07, 05:49 AM   #9
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Smaller teams tend to group around certain categories, like they are all 4's and 3's. Bigger teams have riders in all categories, so if they do it right you get the opportunity to learn from better riders instead of figuring it out yourself. Something that I was grateful to have had from age 8 when I got involved and had proper coaching from day 1...

Unfortunately, it seems that most teams tend to be cliqueish and are not very user friendly and as a result it's very hard for lower category riders to get the experience of riding and learning from the more experienced racers. Also, for someone who wants to start in the sport as an adult, forget it...from what I see it's very hard to get into a team as a 5 unless you know someone. Maybe it's just where I am, but you have to be invited to the smaller teams.

I'd say large if they have a good program to teach racing. Small if you are a really good rider and can pair up with friends. I've done both...large to start, then small after an invitation, then back to large for a number of reasons (most of which involved getting the shot to go overseas), then back to small. But on the small teams we were racing full time, not like the 30 somethings that have an actual life and stuff and can't race all the time...where I am, some teams are pretty small and maybe 2-3 guys show up at a race. One guy I know races on an excellent team and was a professional at one point and he goes on his own to bigger races and rides with his former teammates and they support him, even though his jersey is different.
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Old 09-29-07, 06:59 AM   #10
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This is going to be a great thread.

In the upper Categories, I prefer to have 3 or 5 guys who are dedicated, aren't afraid to travel, and know what they're doing in a race situation so you don't have to speak during the race. You just know how to handle each situation. If you attack, you can trust the other guys to know how to handle it.

In the lower categories, it's not such an issue because there's not a lot of strategy taking place.

If you're new to the sport, you definitely need numbers to train with, travel with, learn from, etc.

Last edited by EventServices; 09-29-07 at 07:00 AM. Reason: clarity
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Old 09-29-07, 07:12 AM   #11
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Agree, you really don't need a group of friends to be a success. Some riders and teams just mesh, you know what the others a thinking/doing. Example final laps of a race play out with you in a good leadout position, not by plan. Glance back and guess what? 2 team-mates on your wheel(just as you expected)! Not part of a pre race "plan", eveyone falls into line and puts the max possible riders in the money.

My opinion for inexperinced riders or teams, communication after a race can be more helpfull and instructive than time spent planning before. A little post mortem, what decisions were made?, what they resulted in?, what would you do differently? Valuable Team mates are willing to be honest in assesing how a race went down, and what would you do differently.
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Old 09-29-07, 07:28 AM   #12
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I'd love to be on a bigger team. That said, I really like a lot of the guys I ride with on a regular basis, despite the fact that I'm 10 years younger than my closest peer right now.

The biggest downside is that I don't regularly get to ride with anyone substantially better than me unless I'm racing. When I was a new racer, we had a CAT1, 2 and a 3 that rode regularly. I learned A LOT from those guys. Now, it's just me and another 3 that generally show up to rides. So, people turn to us to teach them about racing rather than the other way around...and I'm not really a fountain of knowledge. I've just got 2 seasons of racing and what I'd call an average (at best ) level of talent and skill, yet I'm the fastest and one of the most experienced guys who shows up to rides of ~50ish people. Our "A" group might push 25-27mph for an hour or two, and we're left with me and maybe, maybe 3 to 4 other guys who are dying...yet I hardly show up to races and crush the field.

Ideally, I'd like a team that has a bunch of crusty old CAT1s who can drop my ass, and can pass on a wealth of racing experience, along with a healthy dose of CAT3s I can race with. That's not something that's going to be found in Fayetteville though.
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Old 09-29-07, 08:06 AM   #13
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Ideally, I'd like a team that has a bunch of crusty old CAT1s who can drop my ass, and can pass on a wealth of racing experience, along with a healthy dose of CAT3s I can race with. That's not something that's going to be found in Fayetteville though.
Very, very good point.
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Old 09-29-07, 08:18 AM   #14
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Just for the record, by "crusty" he means 'hardened by experience', not by shorts that never see the Maytag.
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Old 09-29-07, 08:27 AM   #15
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Old 09-29-07, 03:11 PM   #16
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Just for the record, by "crusty" he means 'hardened by experience', not by shorts that never see the Maytag.
Yes. No matter what anyone says, it's not "good luck" to wear the same kit three days in a row...
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Old 09-29-07, 04:07 PM   #17
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no one answer as it depends on alot of things, how old are you and what are your goals in the sport?
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Old 09-29-07, 04:31 PM   #18
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Another problem with big club teams is when they change the jersey design, but not all club members buy the new one. Then you have a mish-mash of jerseys in teh pack, and you can't discern the loyalties among sub-teams from clubs.
i know of big clubs that have more than one sub-team on them and several jersey designs dating back to the mid 1990s.. So when they get in a race, they're chasing each other down because even they aren't sure who's on their team or in their club or both.
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