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Old 07-18-08, 07:54 AM   #1
bbgobie
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Is it normal for Cat 5's Cat 1s to be able to hang together?

Recently did my first race.
Thought it would be fun to try out.
Instead of 3 seperate starts, at the last minute they went with one giant group start. So EVERYONE started together.

I had an infection the days before and wasn't feeling well so couldn't hang with the main group. It was I think around 10 laps, total distance 112km. I finished 2 laps down and rode a fair bit in no-mans land. Looking at the results. Several of the registered "Senior 4 Men" which I believe is our equivalent to your Cat 5 finished on the same lap as the top riders in the top division. Even if they hung on to the back of the pack for 112km, is that how close it is between the slowest group and the fastest groups?
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Old 07-18-08, 07:55 AM   #2
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sometimes, depends who's racing.
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Old 07-18-08, 08:05 AM   #3
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too many "it depends" factors to conclude anything but it depends.
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Old 07-18-08, 08:28 AM   #4
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Certainly possible on a flat course without an elite team drilling it at the front. I've also seen Cat 4/5 crits average 29mph for 45 minutes, where the P/1/2 was at 27mph for 60 minutes the same day.

So, "It depends" is probably the best answer. Certainly possible though.
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Old 07-18-08, 08:33 AM   #5
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Fishing at the back of a flat road race and actually racing it are two different races.

So, yes, it is possible. But it depends.
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Old 07-18-08, 09:22 AM   #6
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besides at 112km the Cat 1's are just warming up. It would have had to be a faily non-aggresive day or maybe you have some sandbaggers
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Old 07-18-08, 12:47 PM   #7
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Reading between the lines of the OP's post I'd say: Don't get your hopes up. The 1's aren't as slow as you might be hoping, and you aren't as fast as you might be thinking.

Bob
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Old 07-18-08, 02:49 PM   #8
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Reading between the lines of the OP's post I'd say: Don't get your hopes up. The 1's aren't as slow as you might be hoping, and you aren't as fast as you might be thinking.

Bob
Appropos to the "Am I good or do they suck?" thread.

I did a 35+ Masters crit where it was Cat 1-5. Silly me, I thought it was going to be a M4/5 race. The pace was pretty damned brisk.
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Old 07-18-08, 02:54 PM   #9
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was this the Tour of Terra Cotta race? i think alot of the S4's were one day permits of guys who a) hadn't raced in a while or b) race things like mountain bike etc.

If it's the same race there wasn't alot of surges, etc to break the field up, it was a pretty even speed.
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Old 07-18-08, 03:13 PM   #10
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no cat 5s aren't cool enough to hang out with cat 1s. you must only hang with +/- 1 cat from your level.
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Old 07-18-08, 03:46 PM   #11
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Cat 5's can easily hang with Cat 1's


...when they're Ryan Wohlrabe

What's missing there is his crits before June of last year where he tore off the front never to be seen again.
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Old 07-18-08, 05:03 PM   #12
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was this the Tour of Terra Cotta race? i think alot of the S4's were one day permits of guys who a) hadn't raced in a while or b) race things like mountain bike etc.

If it's the same race there wasn't alot of surges, etc to break the field up, it was a pretty even speed.
Yes that was the race.
I was just wondering how much faster I have to be to keep up with a normal "beginner" field.
I had a feeling there would be a few fast guys on 1 days, but the # of them had me rethinking that.

Since it sounds like you were there, was that a slow race for the top riders ? Kinda sounds like that's what you were saying?
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Old 07-18-08, 08:56 PM   #13
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Normal, no.

Possible, definitely.
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Old 07-18-08, 10:38 PM   #14
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Reading between the lines of the OP's post I'd say: Don't get your hopes up. The 1's aren't as slow as you might be hoping, and you aren't as fast as you might be thinking.

Bob
OP says he finished 2 laps down. It was the other "beginners" he's wondering about.
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Old 07-19-08, 03:07 AM   #15
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It's not overall time and average-speed that differentiates the Cat-1/2/pro races versus the Cat-4 or Cat-5 races. It's the spread between slowest and fastest speeds that count. The lower categories are all about GO-GO-GO and ride as fast as they can (some of the fastest average speeds I've seen were in the cat-3 races). It's more the slow-to-fast surge speeds that's differences. The cat-4/5 races might see 25-35mph surges, fine. The cat-1/2/pro will see 25-50mph surges. Who cares if you average 27mph in race, can you get up to 45mph within seconds to hang onto the pack when they take off?
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Old 07-19-08, 07:24 AM   #16
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Who cares if you average 27mph in race, can you get up to 45mph within seconds to hang onto the pack when they take off?
Not yet, guess that's why I'm still a Cat5.
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Old 07-19-08, 10:42 AM   #17
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most everyone in cat 5 is a sandbagger... i really need to cat up...
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Old 07-19-08, 11:37 AM   #18
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My first cat 1-5 race was a 60min +lap crit with mostly 2's and 3's and about 10 cat 4 and 5 cat fives. There were only a few local 1's. I found sitting in no problem, and eventually, with a break of four up the road, I bridged the 45 second gap they had, held onto the break for half a lap, and then was shelled off the back of the break as though I was a fly being swatted. I suffered trying to hold on to no man's land but was caught by the pack with 1.5 laps to go. I finished with the pack.

Typical? No. Possible? Sure.
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Old 07-19-08, 11:51 AM   #19
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I rather believe the entire cat system is a joke--- at least for road races. I can see not wanting 100+ riders on a short, tight crit course, but for road races, why not run everything together and let the riders sort themselves out. Are categories local only to the US?
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Old 07-19-08, 12:08 PM   #20
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Old 07-19-08, 05:57 PM   #21
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I rather believe the entire cat system is a joke--- at least for road races. I can see not wanting 100+ riders on a short, tight crit course, but for road races, why not run everything together and let the riders sort themselves out. Are categories local only to the US?
Tis how they basically do it in Japan. You're either at the pro-continental or you're not, at most races. (JCF), JBCF is a little bit different, but most races are combined all comers. The strong weed out the weak, and the races carry on - even in the one crit I did there.

Hell, a good portion of the races I did had 3-4 races on the same course at the same time going different speeds. You learn to navigate, that's for sure.
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Old 07-19-08, 06:55 PM   #22
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I rather believe the entire cat system is a joke--- at least for road races. I can see not wanting 100+ riders on a short, tight crit course, but for road races, why not run everything together and let the riders sort themselves out. Are categories local only to the US?
I agree with you, or at least agree that perhaps there's too many categories, but... 200-300 riders together (in Michigan, god help a part of the country where cycling is popular) on a road 8 feet wide is going to get messy.
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Old 07-19-08, 08:56 PM   #23
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I rather believe the entire cat system is a joke--- at least for road races. I can see not wanting 100+ riders on a short, tight crit course, but for road races, why not run everything together and let the riders sort themselves out. Are categories local only to the US?

Have you ever raced?

Are you seriously suggesting that Pros should race along side of Cat. 5 beginners? Have you considered how the Pros might feel about that.
(Heck, even Masters racers don't want to be anywhere near Cat. 5s.)

Using your logic, Pop Warner football teams should be paired up against Pro teams like the New York Giants. And the winner of the Little League World Series should go up against against the New York Yankees.

Bad idea.

Bob
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Old 07-19-08, 09:21 PM   #24
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I rather believe the entire cat system is a joke--- at least for road races. I can see not wanting 100+ riders on a short, tight crit course, but for road races, why not run everything together and let the riders sort themselves out. Are categories local only to the US?
It may depend on how many you people have at your races. At my [road] race today, there were over 100 people in the cat 4 field alone. All of the other cats were fairly full as well. Also, the different categories run different distances. The Pro/1/2 field did 7 laps of an 11 mile course, Cat 3 did 6, Cat 4 did 4 and Cat 5 did 3. Although there are some races where all the categories run the same distance, it is atypical, at least around here. To be somewhat relevant to the thread, a guy that I ride with on occasion was at this race. I hadn't seem him race since he moved out here, but he's a pretty strong rider and apparently a cat 3. Well, he lined up with the wrong race and ended up riding with the P/1/2 race. He even got in the break and although he was thinking it was much harder than he expected a 3s race would be, it took him 3 laps to realize he was in the wrong race. The final tip-off was seeing David Clinger's tattoos...
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Old 07-20-08, 12:44 AM   #25
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^ and ^^ Yep, imagine how great it would be for a pro to have to sort through 200-400 amateurs just to reach the front runners. I'm the first to state that there is an inherent flaw to any competitive system that categorizes people by ability, but I know there is a reason why they have it in cycling and why it actually works... somewhat.

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most everyone in cat 5 is a sandbagger... i really need to cat up...
Sure seems that way. Cat 4 is not much faster than Cat 5 (if at all) and there are fewer crashes... except for So Cal lately.
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