Hi guys.. first post!
Short background story: been riding since 2008, racing since 2009. Unfortunately I live in a small country in asia with not very many cycling races ( think 3-4 a year, maybe 6-7 within 200km of me.) . So I mix it up with abit of triathlon and running.
In the past year or two cycling has really picked up with a few race organisers from overseas starting to come in , there were 9 races in my country this year, with 14 within 200km of me. I've picked up some good results, getting 2 podiums this year and my team got 2 more. I would say I'm high level Cat 4, maybe a lower level 3.
Now this has obviously introduced a problem- the local cycling federation has no history of category rankings (cat 1-5, like you have in aus/NZ, USA.) . they've always split the race into a few categories: elite, sport, Juniors, U23, or A,B,C. these categories are entirely self regulated (meaning you choose which one you sign up for.) or in the case of stage races, determined by a ITT prologue. This obviously has created some problems with getting a good even field in each category- strong riders bullying the system in the lower cats, or wayy too many people in over their heads in a category they should'nt be in ( think people joining the elite category in their 1st or 2nd road race, we have a couple of current continental riders and lower league professionals competing with the amateurs, and they beat up on everyone every time- doesn't really seem fair to me.)
So for next season, one of the organisers has proposed using Cycling weekly's RitMO rankings (http://www.cyclingweekly.cc/ritmo) to split the field- now admittedly this isn't a perfect system, with people able to choose what rides they want uploaded and what they don't. But it may be a start. What are your views? any alternatives?