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How fit does one have to be to participate in a CAT5?

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How fit does one have to be to participate in a CAT5?

Old 03-05-09, 06:17 PM
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How fit does one have to be to participate in a CAT5?

I'm am beyond scared of competing in any sort of bicycle race, but I really want to try it out - and soon! I was never much of a competitive sport fellow, and I have no idea what sort of skill level to expect riders in the 'starter' category to have.

For that matter, what is generally the average length/speed of a cat5 race?
What are some red flags to look out for before I decide to participate?
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Old 03-05-09, 06:18 PM
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:sigh:

https://www.bikeforums.net/33-road-bike-racing/380788-new-racing-here-s-tip-two.html
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Old 03-05-09, 06:18 PM
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Old 03-05-09, 06:20 PM
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Find a race.

Buy a 1-day license.

Race.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:21 PM
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To participate and to compete are two different factors. Anyone can participate, ofcourse, but unless you're relatively fit you'll probably get dropped.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by MrBearSir View Post
I have no idea what sort of skill level to expect riders in the 'starter' category to have.
You should be able to reach down, take a bottle from its cage, drink, and return the bottle to its cage all while riding at a good speed and maintaining your line.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:22 PM
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one way to see how you stack up (on paper at least) is to get a PT & WKO+ and find your places on the e-wang chart.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
You should be able to reach down, take a bottle from its cage, drink, and return the bottle to its cage all while riding at a good speed and maintaining your line.
You are fooling yourself if you expect everyone in a cat 5 race to actually be able to do that. The question wasn't what skill level should he have, it was what to expect. I wouldn't expect most people do be able to hold their line let alone do it while futzing with a water bottle.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by mattm View Post
one way to see how you stack up (on paper at least) is to get a PT & WKO+ and find your places on the e-wang chart.
based on my e-wang extrapolations, I have yet to acheive the power of an untrained female.

go race.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:30 PM
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Originally Posted by MrBearSir View Post
I'm am beyond scared of competing in any sort of bicycle race, but I really want to try it out - and soon! I was never much of a competitive sport fellow, and I have no idea what sort of skill level to expect riders in the 'starter' category to have.

For that matter, what is generally the average length/speed of a cat5 race?
What are some red flags to look out for before I decide to participate?
Take a pic of your guads and we'll tell you if you're ready.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:30 PM
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This is my first full season on BF. Is this what it's like for the rest of the season?
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Old 03-05-09, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Flatballer View Post
This is my first full season on BF. Is this what it's like for the rest of the season?
It has its cycles.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:37 PM
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Good helmet + bike you don't care about = ready to participate
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Old 03-05-09, 06:40 PM
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Originally Posted by umd View Post
You are fooling yourself if you expect everyone in a cat 5 race to actually be able to do that. The question wasn't what skill level should he have, it was what to expect. I wouldn't expect most people do be able to hold their line let alone do it while futzing with a water bottle.
Well one could always hope all the cat 5s could handle that ...... but sadly, you're probably right.


How about just being able to ride in a straight line?
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Old 03-05-09, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by MrBearSir View Post
I'm am beyond scared of competing in any sort of bicycle race, but I really want to try it out - and soon! I was never much of a competitive sport fellow, and I have no idea what sort of skill level to expect riders in the 'starter' category to have.

For that matter, what is generally the average length/speed of a cat5 race?
What are some red flags to look out for before I decide to participate?

The best advice I can give is that no matter how ready you think you are, you still may not be ready.

The only way to find out for sure is to grip it and rip it.

Have fun and be safe.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Avalanche325 View Post
Good helmet + bike you don't care about = ready to participate
Bike I don't care about? Are crashes really that common?
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Old 03-05-09, 06:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Well one could always hope all the cat 5s could handle that ...... but sadly, you're probably right.


How about just being able to ride in a straight line?
Still a bit optimistic. And I'm still a Cat 5, so I should know.

I ride rollers a lot and have pretty decent bike handling skills, but there are sketchy riders in 4/5.

Mostly it's people not holding their line going into/out of corners. Some guys weave just from poor pedal stroke.

That being said, I've bumped shoulders, jumped rear wheels, touched hands, and haven't wrecked in a race yet. I took an inside line a couple weeks ago and bounced off a rider who cut me off, bounced off the curb, and then back into the pack, and nobody went down.

My friend in a 4/5 race locked handle bars with another racer, his front wheel went completely sideways, his whole bike hopped off the ground, and then he landed without crashing or anyone behind crashing.

It has its moments.
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Old 03-05-09, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Well one could always hope all the cat 5s could handle that ...... but sadly, you're probably right.


How about just being able to ride in a straight line?
Not that either
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Old 03-05-09, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by MrBearSir View Post
Bike I don't care about? Are crashes really that common?
Crashes happen at every level of bike racing, but most of the time they're not too serious (of course, sometimes they are serious...and that's unfortunate). Look, the best thing you can do is work on your bike handling skills, protect your front wheel, and stay away from sketchy riders.

I don't know what your cycling experience is, but you should be more concerned about pack riding skills and bike handling then fitness--nobody will care if you go off the back because you're not fast enough, but they'll be p1ssed if you make them crash.
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Old 03-05-09, 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by MrBearSir View Post
Bike I don't care about? Are crashes really that common?
Yes.
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Old 03-05-09, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by MrBearSir View Post
Bike I don't care about? Are crashes really that common?



Give Blood: Race Cat-5
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Old 03-05-09, 07:04 PM
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It's just like a fast group ride, with more carnage. Unless you're out front, be prepared for a lot of unexpected slowing and accelerations. Bumping of elbows and bikes. Don't freak when you hear the bikes crashing aside of you and you'll be all right.
I'd leave the Pinerello at home and go with the Caad9.

Edit: if you can keep up with a decent B ride, you should have the fitness to do a Cat5 race.

Last edited by BarryJo; 03-05-09 at 07:09 PM.
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Old 03-05-09, 07:04 PM
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Many threes can't ride in a straight line.
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Old 03-05-09, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by calRider View Post
I don't know what your cycling experience is, but you should be more concerned about pack riding skills and bike handling then fitness--nobody will care if you go off the back because you're not fast enough, but they'll be p1ssed if you make them crash.
My handling isn't too bad, but I have no experience with pack riding. Which I guess just occurred to me as being pretty key haha.

Would I gain these skills from club riding or something? Cause that's another problem of mine. I'm having a hard time finding a group to ride with.

Not to mention I'm afraid of that too haa

god im a wreck
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Old 03-05-09, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by MrBearSir View Post
I'm am beyond scared of competing in any sort of bicycle race, but I really want to try it out - and soon! I was never much of a competitive sport fellow, and I have no idea what sort of skill level to expect riders in the 'starter' category to have.

For that matter, what is generally the average length/speed of a cat5 race?
What are some red flags to look out for before I decide to participate?
Always faster than you think, but you'll never know until you try...
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