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  1. #1
    Ride that bike!
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    What to look for in a team?

    I decided I am going to join a team next year and I was wondering what others look for, or what are the most important considerations. There are several teams looking for new recruits right now. I know guys on each of these teams, mostly cool people, the membership dues are vastly different and the shop deals vary. Some are huge teams, some are small.

    thanks.

  2. #2
    ride lots be safe Creakyknees's Avatar
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    most important, does their kit match your bike.
    "have fun and be kind"
    - an internet post

  3. #3
    Race to train jrennie's Avatar
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    Private jet and six figure salary.

    If those are not available then good people to race with that will complement you and are like minded with the goal of a team win.

  4. #4
    I eat carbide. Psimet2001's Avatar
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    Pick one without a-holes.

    Srsly. Forget the shop discounts and/or other crap. Pick based on the riders. You either like riding or racing with them or you don't. Don't pick based on really liking 1 or 2 guys either - because as soon as you do those guys will leave the team and you'll be stuck.

    We got a ton of guys this year because of the following reasons:
    1. We had a ton of guys showing up to race EVERY race.
    2. We didn't have a lot of people that just wore a jersey and said they raced but only showed up once or twice a year.
    3. We all hung out as friends and networked professionally outside of racing and it showed.
    4. I hate this new forum format. Can't even tell what I am typing. Bucket of blechy meh.
    5. We didn't charge dues, get hung up on fees, expect anyone to do anything, worry too much about our kit, etc. Buy a jersey....you're on the team. Can't buy one? Borrow one....you're on the team.
    6. We raced heads-up and treated everyone with respect - for the most part. As a result we naturally found ourselves bs'n with classy racers after each race - which naturally led to them asking about the team.

    Everyone stayed....becuase of the people. The shop pissed everyone off at some point during the year. A lot of us lost our jobs and wouldn't have been able to pay dues. More than a fewof us covered race fees for those who couldn't.....and we raced. Cat1's and 2's chilled with 5's. 3's didn't talk smack.....it was a beautiful and weird thing.

  5. #5
    Ride that bike!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psimet2001 View Post
    Pick one without a-holes.
    We got a ton of guys this year because of the following reasons:
    1. We had a ton of guys showing up to race EVERY race.
    2. We didn't have a lot of people that just wore a jersey and said they raced but only showed up once or twice a year.
    3. We all hung out as friends and networked professionally outside of racing and it showed.
    4. I hate this new forum format. Can't even tell what I am typing. Bucket of blechy meh.
    5. We didn't charge dues, get hung up on fees, expect anyone to do anything, worry too much about our kit, etc. Buy a jersey....you're on the team. Can't buy one? Borrow one....you're on the team.
    6. We raced heads-up and treated everyone with respect - for the most part. As a result we naturally found ourselves bs'n with classy racers after each race - which naturally led to them asking about the team.
    .
    PSI, thanks man! This helps a lot. For some reason I have been worrying about this...not really something to worry about I know. Anyways, while scanning through your list there is one team that stands out to me. I really want to learn and improve next year and my goal is to upgrade from 35+/4 to Masters. The team I really like has a national champ, 2s, 3s, Masters and 4s (no cat 5 here) and is open to everyone that is willing to put down $100 on a kit. Another thing is beer. Sounds silly, but I wan't to be able to drink a Leffe with these guys/gals. Lastly, I am a quiet, calm, easy going dude and I can't stand type-A punks or a-holes. It seems there are few around here. The only issue with this team is the group ride takes off about 15 miles from my house - I guess that would be a good warm-up. Thanks again.

  6. #6
    Resident Alien Racer Ex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psimet2001 View Post
    Pick one without a-holes.

    Srsly. Forget the shop discounts and/or other crap. Pick based on the riders.

    We got a ton of guys this year because of the following reasons:
    1. We had a ton of guys showing up to race at most races.
    2. We didn't have a lot of people that just wore a jersey and said they raced but only showed up once or twice a year.
    3. We all hung out as friends
    4. I hate this new forum format. Can't even tell what I am typing. Bucket of blechy meh.
    5. We didn't charge dues, get hung up on fees, expect anyone to do anything, worry too much about our kit, etc. Buy a jersey....you're on the team. Can't buy one? Borrow one....you're on the team.
    6. We raced our arses off and treated everyone with respect As a result we naturally found ourselves bs'n with classy racers after each race - which naturally led to them asking about the team.

    Everyone stayed....becuase of the people. Cat1's and 2's worked for the 4's. 3's didn't talk smack.....it was a beautiful thing.
    Some edits to reflect our team.

    It's the people.

    If our group folded there would be a short list of teams I might consider, and in none of the considerations does "bling" factor in.

  7. #7
    Mitcholo CrimsonKarter21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psimet2001 View Post
    Pick one without a-holes.

    Srsly. Forget the shop discounts and/or other crap. Pick based on the riders. You either like riding or racing with them or you don't. Don't pick based on really liking 1 or 2 guys either - because as soon as you do those guys will leave the team and you'll be stuck.
    Seriously. Joinging a team because they have cool sponsors or a cool kit is dumb (unless the kit is absolutely hideous). I was talking to a local kid about joining my current team because his current wa, for the most part, folding. He said it was down to two teams; one which I was on at one point, and mine. He was trying to get to see what we could give him in terms of deals and free stuff, so I told him to go join the other team. I really don't want to be on the same team (albeit 3,000 miles away) as some kid who's got no results and trying to steal equipment from people who work 3x as hard as him.

  8. #8
    avatar by Sean Powers mike868y's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CrimsonKarter21 View Post
    Seriously. Joinging a team because they have cool sponsors or a cool kit is dumb (unless the kit is absolutely hideous). I was talking to a local kid about joining my current team because his current wa, for the most part, folding. He said it was down to two teams; one which I was on at one point, and mine. He was trying to get to see what we could give him in terms of deals and free stuff, so I told him to go join the other team. I really don't want to be on the same team (albeit 3,000 miles away) as some kid who's got no results and trying to steal equipment from people who work 3x as hard as him.
    It's funny, maybe it is because I come from a motocross background, but I can't believe how much some local cyclists expect out of a team. When you get sponsored by a shop in MX, getting 20% off retail or 5-10% over cost and a good deal on a bike is basically all you get. I couldn't imagine wanting a free kit or free swag, it is all about who runs the shop and who you want to hang out with at the races.

    The thought of getting a free kit or free stuff when I joined my team for next season never even crossed my mind.It just so happened that some of my favorite people to ride with were joining the team and the guy who started it invited me to the first team meeting.

    It's not about the swag, its about the people and the atmosphere...
    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    it depends

  9. #9
    Young and unconcerned Treefox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Creakyknees View Post
    most important, does their kit match your bike.
    Absolutely critical.


    After that, a coordinated program for crushing souls.


    Actually, just a good social scene.
    Die schokoladenseite des radfahrens.

  10. #10
    . botto's Avatar
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    don't be this guy.


  11. #11
    Senior Member
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    Does the team/club fit your needs?
    You need to know your needs, what you want to accomplish, your abilities, etc.

    For me it was compatible racing schedules, group training at least once a week, same age/grade category. After that came what I can offer the team and what they can offer or provide me.
    The above changed dramatically over my "career" of 23 years of racing...and still counting.
    At first, when I was a citizens, unlicensed, racer it was all about learning what to do, how to train, etc. As I progressed to cat 4 then 3 I learned that "teams/clubs" do not mean the same things to very many and mean all sorts of different things depending on who you talk to. Once a cat 3 it became all about finding a small group that could/would work together, actually work on and carry out...lol or at least try to...planned race strategies, train together, etc. I was 30 when I upgraded to a cat 3, had a wife and 2 kids, was a fair racer...meaning no career for me...I became the "worker" for the team, helping younger, stronger, better riders with lead outs, chases, wind breaking, etc. and watching them upgrade to cat 2 and move on.

    Teams are very fluid and generally see lots of member changes, especially with younger riders.

    Once I hit "vets" level...no vets anymore we are now lumped as "masters"...I looked for but did not find a vets team offering the racing I wanted. I typically did 50 to 60 races per season. My best friend and I formed our own "vets/masters" team, recruited 5 similar type racers, found sponsors and funding and were on our way. We were masters only by this time and kept our team to 5 racers that raced together nearly every weekend for years until life got in the way and we dissolved the team.

    The above blah blah blah is just to give a bit of a description of how many/some teams set things up and how your needs may or may not fit, which can change quite quickly sometimes. I suggest thinking about what you want from a team...not a club...what you can offer such a team, prepare a brief resume...some teams like such things...of your strengths, weaknesses...family, work, as well as the physical lol...and get cracking. The most important thing, to me, is to know what you want and use that in your search.

    Good luck and keep us informed.

  12. #12
    Banned. El Diablo Rojo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrennie View Post
    Private jet and six figure salary.

    If those are not available then good people to race with that will complement you and are like minded with the goal of a team win.
    Seven figures and keep the jet..

  13. #13
    Mitcholo CrimsonKarter21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike868y View Post
    It's funny, maybe it is because I come from a motocross background, but I can't believe how much some local cyclists expect out of a team. When you get sponsored by a shop in MX, getting 20% off retail or 5-10% over cost and a good deal on a bike is basically all you get. I couldn't imagine wanting a free kit or free swag, it is all about who runs the shop and who you want to hang out with at the races.

    The thought of getting a free kit or free stuff when I joined my team for next season never even crossed my mind.It just so happened that some of my favorite people to ride with were joining the team and the guy who started it invited me to the first team meeting.

    It's not about the swag, its about the people and the atmosphere...
    +1. I used to race go-karts back in the day. Less than 1% of the kids out there were sponsored, so pretty much, we got d*ck. If you could pull a sponsor, it was never an industry sponsor, and to get one in the industry, you had to have Fittipaldi or Andretti as your last name. Getting any percentage off of anything was unheard of.
    Now I'm looking at free bikes, enough free clothes to last me a week and a half without washing and enough rubber for Vietnam to feel a pinch.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Nate552's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psimet2001 View Post
    Pick one without a-holes.
    This.

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