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Am I physically ready to attempt my first cat 5 crit?

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Am I physically ready to attempt my first cat 5 crit?

Old 05-05-17, 12:05 PM
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Sometimes I really don't get "rules" in bike racing. If I get caught behind a crash, I try and chase back on, if I get lapped, I pull myself. If I miss the start of a race (which has never happened) well then I don't race. Racing means showing up on time and sometimes stuff happens (crashes, mechanicals) that's the breaks man. If I ever saw someone jump in who didn't start and even come within a wheel of me they would definitely hear about it. If Lebron James misses the first quarter of a basketball game they don't restart the game at 0-0. You're a middle aged bike racer who upgraded early, you're not a sponsored pro athlete.
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Old 05-05-17, 01:01 PM
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so you would get pissy with someone who had a 15 second late start because they were in the restroom in a weeknight crit?


Some of you have lost the forest for the trees. It's supposed to be about FUN. NGAS about your racing except you.
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Old 05-05-17, 01:17 PM
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Stick to Strava.
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Old 05-05-17, 01:39 PM
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Just race ... between the officials and the other racers, you'll figure out what's ok or not ok.


I don't get the sense that anyone here is upset, but suggesting some of the actions may be frowned upon by others. Better to learn the etiquette in a weeknight race than make a faux pas in a bigger crit.
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Old 05-05-17, 01:42 PM
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Why not try racing in a bigger weekend race?
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Old 05-05-17, 02:23 PM
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Give him time. I am sure in a year or two he will take the plunge.
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Old 05-05-17, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by PepeM
Give him time. I am sure in a year or two he will take the plunge.
That's probably about right, LOL.


For example, I could do Bike the Bricks. Big crit race coming up that has $1k purses each for Cat 4 race and 35+ 4/5 race. It's a highly technical crit. Lots of crashes. There are members of my team that have sworn off that race. "Did it once, never doing it again." Others loved it. I'm inexperienced and the word "technical" scares me.


Plus I'm not very ambitious about this racing. If I was ambitious I'd be gunning to upgrade to Cat 3. I guess now that I think about it, if I get banned from doing the 4/5 C crit at either or both local venues, I'll probably want to upgrade to 3. You get banned if you win too much. I've yet to win.
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Old 05-05-17, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by aaronmcd



You're gonna confuse radish legs!

You mean like further confuse, right?
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Old 05-05-17, 05:57 PM
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Judging by yootoobe, that bike the bricks looks super fun! That's a real race compared to the small field stuff you've been doing so far. You should reg for it! Even if you just tailgun the sh*t out of the 3/4 that's a good looking course.
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Old 05-05-17, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by JuiceWillis
Sometimes I really don't get "rules" in bike racing. If I get caught behind a crash, I try and chase back on, if I get lapped, I pull myself. If I miss the start of a race (which has never happened) well then I don't race. Racing means showing up on time and sometimes stuff happens (crashes, mechanicals) that's the breaks man. If I ever saw someone jump in who didn't start and even come within a wheel of me they would definitely hear about it. If Lebron James misses the first quarter of a basketball game they don't restart the game at 0-0. You're a middle aged bike racer who upgraded early, you're not a sponsored pro athlete.
They didnt restart the game 0-0. He chased and was a lap down, finished 20 something place. If Lebron shows up in the 2nd quarter, he starts with zero points and his team is likely down, but he sure as hell is going to go into the game and try to catch up.
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Old 05-06-17, 07:25 AM
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RL, first of all, you should not have entered the race without checking with officials. Officials have a start list and check it against racers on the line. If you are not at the start, you are listed as DNS. Showing up later in the race can cause confusion and problems for the officials. That was your first mistake.

Secondly, once you were in the race and down laps on the field, it is against the rules for you to be participating in the sprint. Once you are down a lap from the field (not the break) you are not to have any impact on the race. You can sit in but cannot alter the impact of the race. That means you cannot sprint and you cannot lead out any riders. You can sit in. That's it.

Other things to consider:
1. By participating in the sprint, you risk impeding or impacting another rider, who is not down a lap.
2. Sprints are by nature chaotic. Having a person involved who should not be there increases the risk of conflict or crash.

Ignoring this shows little respect for the race or your fellow competitors. What you should have done is once the pace picks up for the final sprint, you should have sat up and let the race ride away from you.

It should also be noted that it is generally frowned upon to contest the sprint in a hard group ride if you've done no work or skipped part of the ride to be there at the end.

Now, if you are down a lap, and a break goes, you can go with the break and use that to try to bring you around to the field to be even on laps. But, you cannot help the break. You can only sit in. At no point can you be on the front of the break. The riders with you riding on your wheel would be at risk of being DQ'd, and it is incumbent upon you to let the others know you are down laps and just trying to catch up with the field, and then to stay out of their rotation and not mess up their effort.

Members of the field can help bring riders in a break up, but they must remain in contact with the field. That means if you are in a break and have a teammate in the field, they cannot drop off the back to help you bridge up. Your teammates can drop just off the back of the field to help, but that is about all.

As others have said, there are clear rules on free laps for crashes and flats. If you go down in a crash or get a flat, you must go forward on the course to the officials - you cannot turn around and go backward. The official will determine whether you get a free lap and tell you when to go. The two times I've had to get my free laps, it usually took 3-4 laps before I was allowed back in.

Mechanicals and being slowed because of a crash do not qualify for free laps. So, if you drop a chain, you need to put it back on and chase. If there is a crash in front of you and you have to hit the brakes to not crash, it is then up to you to chase.

Again, read the whole rule book and you might start to understand this.

And the Lebron James comparison is bad, as it is not uncommon for players to sit on the bench for half a game and come in in the second half.
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Old 05-06-17, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Costco hot dogs
Why not try racing in a bigger weekend race?
Exactly. He's letting all the big draw crits go and missing the chance to show his power and skills. But then again he'd have to start with the rest of the field in those races.
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Old 05-06-17, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Radish_legs
That's probably about right, LOL.


For example, I could do Bike the Bricks. Big crit race coming up that has $1k purses each for Cat 4 race and 35+ 4/5 race. It's a highly technical crit. Lots of crashes. There are members of my team that have sworn off that race. "Did it once, never doing it again." Others loved it. I'm inexperienced and the word "technical" scares me.


Plus I'm not very ambitious about this racing. If I was ambitious I'd be gunning to upgrade to Cat 3. I guess now that I think about it, if I get banned from doing the 4/5 C crit at either or both local venues, I'll probably want to upgrade to 3. You get banned if you win too much. I've yet to win.
If you're a cat 4 and know you're too inexperienced to race a cat 4 race, that might be an indication you moved up too fast. Also, never know if you don't line up...

Just looked at that Crit. You can race 4/5 and then 6.5 hours later race the 3/4.

Last edited by Da Reef; 05-06-17 at 10:40 PM.
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Old 05-07-17, 05:15 AM
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From my rather limited experience, technical crits tend to be safer than non-technical ones, since the field gets all strung out. Also way more fun even though I suck at them. Only one way to get better though.
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Old 06-01-17, 11:07 AM
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Race #11. C crit (4/5).

1st.


Race #12 B crit (3/4)

Pack finish. Didn't miss the start this time. Tried to animate the race for the first time ever. Bridging attempt with 3 labs to go. And grabbed my teammate's wheel in the final half lap. Both doomed attempts. But I guess this gets to the point--what if your more experienced teammate does something that doesn't feel tactically correct? Do you do as he says, or do you do your own thing (i.e. stay sheltered and prep for the final sprint). There's no way I want to be in the wind that early. But in both instances I had fun and got try something different. It would be boring to always sit in for group sprints. Esp when a break is up the road.


I don't know how much more I'll be racing. I don't deserve my "own" thread, I hope this has been useful to some. If I post something I will do it on the threads that other people post on (like race results, race vids, etc.).

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Old 06-01-17, 11:43 AM
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Nice job on the win!

Originally Posted by Radish_legs
grabbed my teammate's wheel in the final half lap. Both doomed attempts. But I guess this gets to the point--what if your more experienced teammate does something that doesn't feel tactically correct?
What specifically happened? Why did you grab your teammate's wheel?
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Old 06-01-17, 11:54 AM
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the win was well done.

are you all racing on a sidewalk tho? The dips had me thinking you were going to lose it each time.
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Old 06-01-17, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by globecanvas
Nice job on the win!



What specifically happened? Why did you grab your teammate's wheel?
Thanks.

Because he went by and said "come on!" or something like that. And were sprinting for probably 6th place. I could have just ignored him, but part of the fun is just doing something at the spur of the moment.

Sort of like the bridging effort. I asked him kind of like a theoretical question. He says sure. And two seconds later he's like "let's go!"

I give myself permission to sacrifice places in order to try new things. Isn't that what weeknight crits should be about sometimes?
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Old 06-01-17, 12:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Ygduf
the win was well done.

are you all racing on a sidewalk tho? The dips had me thinking you were going to lose it each time.
Thanks. No it's a paved road that goes around soccer fields. The dips are part of the drainage system (rather than buried culvert pipes). They're not bad after you get used to them. One of the dips is in a turn and that one is the trickiest. I've felt my rear tire lose traction through there as I'm pedaling.

The road has no cracks, no potholes. It also drains water well. Last week the guys raced in the rain, and no crashes in 3 races. The road has vertical grooves in it.
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Old 06-01-17, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Radish_legs
Because he went by and said "come on!" or something like that. And were sprinting for probably 6th place. I could have just ignored him, but part of the fun is just doing something at the spur of the moment.
When in the race was this? There are not a lot of situations where it makes sense to grab your teammate's wheel. It would make sense if he was trying to launch you up to the break or into the finish, sacrificing himself to get you something.

Originally Posted by Radish_legs
I give myself permission to sacrifice places in order to try new things. Isn't that what weeknight crits should be about sometimes?
Yes! "Just for fun" is a fine reason to grab your teammate's wheel as long as you both know that it's not generally a good use of teammates. One of my teammates loves to tell a story about how he was otf solo in some 4s race when a buddy suddenly appears on his wheel gasping for his life. "Hey man, I just wanted to be up here with you! This is awesome! I think I'm gonna blow up though!" and then vanished, having dragged the entire field with him. The story is not relevant to your situation especially, but it always cracks me up.

To answer your actual question from earlier, IMO it's fine to ignore your teammate's yelled advice if you think he's being dumb. I know plenty of 1s and 2s who are tactical idiots. It's really useful to know all of your teammates well enough to know who knows how to race and who doesn't.
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Old 06-01-17, 12:56 PM
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In this case I knew that there was 0% chance he was going for his own last lap breakaway. It was a leadout and I confirmed this with him after.


What I could have done is just waited to see if someone else would have gotten onto his wheel. And then followed.


No I didn't screw anything up for him.
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Old 06-01-17, 01:23 PM
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If he was leading you out, grabbing his wheel or grabbing a wheel or two behind him (especially if you think it's too early) are pretty much the same thing in terms of listening to him vs ignoring him. Letting him go if you think it's way too early or just pointless is also fine.

Why no more races?
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Old 06-01-17, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by globecanvas
Why no more races?
Inquiring minds want to know. Seriously, it seems like you're just starting to learn what works for you (and you just won your first race).
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Old 06-01-17, 03:35 PM
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It's not that I'm not going to race anymore. I guess there's a chance at that. But I don't feel super motivated. I came up with two racing goals. Win the C crit up north (DONE), and win the C crit down south (2nd place, NOT done). Hard for me to get to the crit down south due to work. I don't have an "A" event. Our team leader just had a serious injury in a race where he crashed. Now he's off the bike. I feel like I'm spending too much time away from my family. Part of me just wants to have fun. Kind of all the reasons not to race that I put in the thread back in 2015 or whenever. I've proven to myself that I can race, even as an old man. And that means something to me. I'm glad for it. Good experience.
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Old 06-01-17, 05:28 PM
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I was in the race last week, it was a downpour for a few laps. Roads weren't a problem at all but the low visibility made it a little sketchy.
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