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Old 10-28-09, 06:47 PM   #1
UBUvelo
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option is there: change to CAT 4 or stay with the 45+ CAT 2/3/4?

i did get a response from the organizer of the Spring Mount racing coming up in about 10 days...i was fine with staying in the MASTERS 45+ Cat 2/3/4, but he said i could switch to the earlier Cat 4 race...

here's what he said: "The masters 2 - 3 - 4 race is generally for B racers- (intermediate) - however you are able to compete in this race if you would prefer- but generally speaking the cat 4 race is for newbies. we can change it or leave it- depending on what you choose.

let me know

craig- and we look forward to seeing you there- bring everone out."


so, though i am in better shape than i've been in a good while and am in great health, what race would be the better to enter for my first race? which would be the most fun? i'm actually fine with being with Cats 2-3-4, but will there be a big difference? also, i may ride my rigid bike, but i've been getting my heavy, lugged steel bike a bit prepared, been training on it for a week, just got some Kendas i hope to try out in very muddy conditions (i've been riding it hard with slicks in gravel, grass, crazy switchbacks and plenty of mud and it's doing better than i would've imagined).

i have a feeling the Cat 4 race will still be full of intermediates and...as my friend said...expect the Rutgers team to be there and thrash everyone
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Old 10-28-09, 06:51 PM   #2
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The Cat 2 masters around here are not slow.
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Old 10-28-09, 06:55 PM   #3
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the cat 4 race is a much better place for a new racer than a mixed field.

older does not mean slower
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Old 10-28-09, 07:10 PM   #4
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yeah, and thanks...sounds like i might do the switch, but are there actually Cat 4 racers in these Masters races? a few brave souls (or folks like me w/o a clue what they might have in store for them...?)
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Old 10-28-09, 07:27 PM   #5
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Masters races are usually full of older guys that just can't keep up with the elite young guys. so yeah they are still fast
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Old 10-28-09, 07:56 PM   #6
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but are there some plenty of cat 4 masters who DON'T keep up with anyone else in those cat 234 races? or are there few and far between daring to enter a 234 race? not me, i don't think...at least not for now. think i'll just make this first one a fun one and one to take notes on...i just hope there aren't folks sneaking who don't belong and try to make the rest of us look worse than we already might be!
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Old 10-28-09, 09:24 PM   #7
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I'll be at that race as well and it will also be my first. I am also doing the 4 race instead of the 35+.
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Old 10-28-09, 11:10 PM   #8
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i just hope there aren't folks sneaking who don't belong and try to make the rest of us look worse than we already might be!
Unfortunately, I think you can pretty much count on there being several people in this cat 4 race who ought to be in the other one. Don't let that worry you. The elite field is pretty much the only one without sandbaggers.
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Old 10-29-09, 04:45 AM   #9
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yes there will be some cat 4s in the masters field
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Old 10-29-09, 06:04 AM   #10
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Do both.
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Old 10-29-09, 08:17 AM   #11
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Masters races are usually full of older guys that just can't keep up with the elite young guys. so yeah they are still fast
Ouch! That hurts, sort of

Well I race Masters and Pro/1/2. Most of the time I place in Masters and at least don't come in last place in the 1/2 field chasin the youngins around
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Old 10-29-09, 08:33 AM   #12
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... but are there actually Cat 4 racers in these Masters races?
There might be a few, depending on the field size. But, there will be more Cat4s in the Men's C/Cat 4 race, so you'll have a better chance of having a group to race against.

I attempted to double race a few weekends ago - Cat4 and 3/4 an hour later. The average speed was substantially faster. In Cat4, I'm bottom of mid-pack. In the 3/4, I got completely shot off the back before the first lap was complete. The Masters 2/3/4 might be even faster, given the addition of the 2s.

So, I'd race Cat4. If you do well, double up, or just upgrade at the next event.
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Old 10-29-09, 02:00 PM   #13
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I'm 56 and in my 2nd year of cross racing. I finish in the middle of the B (cat 3/4) races in NE Ohio. When we have a Masters' 45+ race some of older A (Cat 1,2,3 racers) will come down and take the podium spots. They are great riders but the younger guns usually take the top spots in the A races. Our C (beginner cat 4/5) races are 30 minutes long compared to longer races for the upper races.

Since this is your first race I'd suggest doing the Cat 4 race. There will always be someone ahead and behind you. You don't want to get frustrated by being shellacked in your first race by more experianced riders. There is a learning curve that will gain places in future races. In a race early this season I had a mechanical on the first lap of the B race. The organizers then allowed me to race the A race. I was over my head from the get-go and stayed at the back of the field to not disrupt the faster riders. I did finish ahead of 1 rider and two others who DNF'd. I was also lapped by around 2/3rds of the field.
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Old 10-29-09, 04:31 PM   #14
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well, i did give them the go ahead to put me into the Cat 4...but do i have the option (should i not be tanked or discouraged) to do the later Masters race?? or would that mean paying again (not a problem if so)?

thanks for the advice everyone
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Old 10-29-09, 04:59 PM   #15
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Yeah, you can double race. You will have to pay the entry twice.
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Old 10-29-09, 05:42 PM   #16
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When I've raced twice they charged $10 for the 2nd race.
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Old 10-29-09, 06:57 PM   #17
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When I've raced twice they charged $10 for the 2nd race.
Only 5 bucks for me
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Old 10-29-09, 07:18 PM   #18
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hey Allegheny Jet, what's the aerodynamic brick you are riding? unless i win the lottery next week (and get the TCX i've been lusting for), i'm probably ditching my cx-mtbike setup and using my own old school tank...a schwinn caliente with a few shed pounds and econo Kendas!
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Old 10-30-09, 07:08 PM   #19
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Do both.
win.
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Old 10-31-09, 10:11 PM   #20
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win.


i wish! one day, maybe...glad i am at least where i belong...hoping for muddy conditions only because i prefer the muck and might give me an advantage. last week of continuous rain has been nothing but days of mudfest training and that's been a blast. still, i am going into the fray with a bike that i hope makes it through the 40 minutes
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Old 11-01-09, 06:26 AM   #21
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hey Allegheny Jet, what's the aerodynamic brick you are riding? unless i win the lottery next week (and get the TCX i've been lusting for), i'm probably ditching my cx-mtbike setup and using my own old school tank...a schwinn caliente with a few shed pounds and econo Kendas!
I'm the aerodynamic brick. I'm a former decathlete (early 70's) and weigh in at my fighting weight of 188lbs at 6'. I do well on downhills, For cross racing I use a 09' Trek XO1.
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Old 11-01-09, 08:07 AM   #22
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I'm the aerodynamic brick. I'm a former decathlete (early 70's) and weigh in at my fighting weight of 188lbs at 6'. I do well on downhills, For cross racing I use a 09' Trek XO1.
OOOH....well, i am about 153...but with my steel anchor that is shaped like a bike frame, we'd be about even...

i think it will be fun to see how i do with this easily 30lb+ bike...almost might as well take the mtbike, but i'm not.

anyways, what's the basic 'training' schedule you cat 3 and 4 (mostly 4) folks do (more or less) a week before a race?
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Old 11-02-09, 06:30 PM   #23
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My cross practice this fall has been 1 day of cross practice, and two days on the road doing a 2 hr Z2 ride, and a Z3 ride with some good hard 1 minute efforts that exceed anything I'll be doing in a race. On the Z3 ride I warmup 20 minutes then go to Z3 for 45 minutes. I throw in the HIT intervals after my HR comes back down to Z3 for 5 minutes.

In the cross practice I go to a local park with a 1.5 mile cross circuit that includes grass riding, bike trail/pavement riding, a technical area and a steep stair case to carry the bike up. Typical practice will include a 1 lap warmup. In a grassy field I do 8 to 10 dismounts/remounts. On a short steep hillside I'll do 6 to 8 double climbs @ Z5 with a recovery of easy peddling around a baseball field. Some times on the first time up the hill I'll jump off and push/carry the bike up then ride up the hill on the 2nd half of the interval. After a recovery I'll then do race pace intervals. Sometimes I'll do 4 or 5 x 1 lap (8-9 min) intervals with a 4 to 6 minute recovery and other days I'll do 2 x 2 lap intervals with a 8 to 10 minute recovery. I should do some running/sprints but I have a messed up ankle and can't run at all.

Hope this helps.
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Old 11-02-09, 08:38 PM   #24
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My cross practice this fall has been 1 day of cross practice, and two days on the road doing a 2 hr Z2 ride, and a Z3 ride with some good hard 1 minute efforts that exceed anything I'll be doing in a race. On the Z3 ride I warmup 20 minutes then go to Z3 for 45 minutes. I throw in the HIT intervals after my HR comes back down to Z3 for 5 minutes.

In the cross practice I go to a local park with a 1.5 mile cross circuit that includes grass riding, bike trail/pavement riding, a technical area and a steep stair case to carry the bike up. Typical practice will include a 1 lap warmup. In a grassy field I do 8 to 10 dismounts/remounts. On a short steep hillside I'll do 6 to 8 double climbs @ Z5 with a recovery of easy peddling around a baseball field. Some times on the first time up the hill I'll jump off and push/carry the bike up then ride up the hill on the 2nd half of the interval. After a recovery I'll then do race pace intervals. Sometimes I'll do 4 or 5 x 1 lap (8-9 min) intervals with a 4 to 6 minute recovery and other days I'll do 2 x 2 lap intervals with a 8 to 10 minute recovery. I should do some running/sprints but I have a messed up ankle and can't run at all.

Hope this helps.
yeah, i'll have a nice learning curve of info to check out after this first race...and will know how to train a bit better. not that i am competitive, but i am appreciating the spirit of it and might amp it up. not really up on the Z2 etc intentisities, but have been riding 4 times a week on average for the last 4 months, but that's mostly mountain biking and recently road biking. but lately have definitely been taking the steel tank through all sorts of 'cross-ish terrain, gravel trails that leap into singletrack mud and up hilly switchbacks that really make you work. i think the hopping on and off will be my weakness for sure. and possibly stamina. having no bottle of water for 40 minutes, too, is going to be new...

would it be good to have some hammer gels on hand?

thanks for the info!
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Old 11-03-09, 01:42 PM   #25
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If there is an option, then that means you can race twice in a day and get stronger faster!
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