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How long did it take you to upgrade from Cat4 to Cat3?

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View Poll Results: How long did it take for you to upgrade from Cat4 to Cat3?
1 year or less
44
75.86%
1-2 years
8
13.79%
2-3 years
2
3.45%
3 years and up
4
6.90%
Voters: 58. You may not vote on this poll

How long did it take you to upgrade from Cat4 to Cat3?

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Old 11-04-09, 08:40 AM
  #26  
cslone
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About 4 months to get my points, but I stayed a 4 for the entire season, ~7 months or so.
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Old 11-04-09, 08:42 AM
  #27  
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4s used to be the 5s - the category all new racers get automatically.

It took 3 years to upgrade from 4s to 3s for me. I won 3 races out of 4 (2 in the fall, 2 in the spring) and an official upgraded me at the finish line of the third win (they could do that back then).

But man, I spent 2.5 years groveling, mainly because I was a Junior. Only when I started racing Senior races (as a Junior) I started doing well. It helps when a young Frank McCormack and an even younger Mark go and kill you every weekend. Suddenly racing against "regular" Senior racers seemed easy.

Then I spent 23 years in the 3s. hahahahaha. It's not as easy to upgrade from 3 to 2. You can't hide like I do - you have to be fit.

For the record I finished the Binghamton crit just once, and I couldn't move up enough to place in the top half of the Cat 3 (or 3-4?) crit. Around here that kind of an effort would have netted me a top 10 for sure. I was fit back then.

When I returned to the race, I got shelled pretty much immediately. I'm guessing, based on my numbers now, that I was at about 2.7-3 w/kg threshold, and doing 8 w/kg for the hill (20 seconds? Shorter?). Again, those numbers would net me top 10s around here, but any big hill, forget it.

cdr
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Old 11-04-09, 08:50 AM
  #28  
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I'll let you know.....



.....in a few years....
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Old 11-04-09, 08:59 AM
  #29  
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Took me two full seasons. I never raced as a cat 5 so I spent a lot of time figuring out how to race. I got to the point where I knew what I was doing and started getting regular top ten's. I wanted a win though so I pushed it a bit further and won a road race and a crit to take an omnium win and upgraded. Incidentally I won the first cat 3 race I did then I got hit by a car

It's different for every one though. It's interesting to see that most people do it in one year though. I still think it's important to get a win or at least several podium finishes before moving up. That way once you up grade you will still be highly competitive as a cat 3.
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Old 11-04-09, 09:48 AM
  #30  
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Started racing in March, was a 3 by April. Took the rest of the year off to mtb race, came back the next March and was a 2 by June, got my cat 1 a year later.
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Old 11-04-09, 09:49 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by ZeCanon View Post
Started racing in March, was a 3 by April. Took the rest of the year off to mtb race, came back the next March and was a 2 by June, got my cat 1 a year later.
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Old 11-04-09, 09:52 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Grumpy McTrumpy View Post
that is true. in fact, because of the same phenomenon that I speak of, your P123 race would be the smallest field size. It is common to see a P123 race with less than ten riders in the same event as a 4 race with over 50.

in the capital district RR this year I was definitely climbing at 4.2w/kg and I just watched them ride away from me. cat 4 race.
at the GVCC race at Bloomfield this year the winners were putting in times that I could not come close to matching on the hills. I was over 4 w/kg as well.

I could go on all day with this. We have very very few crits and almost nothing flat enough to have a true pack finish. If you want that kind of racing, you have to travel to NYC or places south.
I think you're mixing apples with oranges. climbing at 4.2 w/kg and getting dropped on a 10 minute climb doing so does not mean that the competition has an ftp of 4.5 w/kg. it means that the racers who climbed away from you were climbing at a rate greater than 4.2 w/kg on that particular climb.
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Old 11-04-09, 09:59 AM
  #33  
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I think some of them do. My own one-hour power was 4.0 w/kg at the time. I am well aware of the relationship between one hour power and ten-minute or twenty-minute power. I am also well aware that most people (myself included) are able to climb at higher than threshold for shorter durations. This is my reasoning behind the stated estimates. I stand by what I said. I have also been witness to time trials involving the same people.
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Old 11-04-09, 10:00 AM
  #34  
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I don't believe in your narrow 'time limits' on these things.
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Old 11-04-09, 10:01 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by ZeCanon View Post
Started racing in March, was a 3 by April. Took the rest of the year off to mtb race, came back the next March and was a 2 by June, got my cat 1 a year later.
That's insane, and in Colorado no less. Nice work!


---


This BTW is what you call a statistical outlier
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Old 11-04-09, 10:07 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by td.tony View Post
I'm trying to set a goal for the coming season.
I'm still a cat5 but by the end of January I will have completed the minimum number of mass starts required to upgrade. I've only done 3 crit races so far but my last race I placed somewhere in the top 15 out of 45, I still don't have enough sprinting power to place.

My goal I want to set is to upgrade from Cat4 to Cat3 by the end of the 2010 season. I'm wondering if this seems too far fetched or not for most riders.
You won't know until you try. Also realize it varies by area and the difficulty of the competition.

However, if you're not getting top tens in Cat 5, you've got a way to go.

It will be difficult to upgrade on just experience in one season. So you'll need 10 top 10 Cat 4 finishes, or enough points (which will require more than just top ten to get in the points.)

Thus you're going to need to see an improvement in either your fitness, your tactics or your luck, to start placing Top 10 in the 4's, which will likely be a bit more difficult than top ten in the 5's, but not an order of magnitude difference.

So with a bit of a breakthrough its definitely doable, but you're going to need to see some imporvement.
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Old 11-04-09, 11:24 AM
  #37  
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I tried to drag it out as long as possible, but eventually my teammates started calling me out for sandbaggery.

Peer pressure's a beetch.
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Old 11-04-09, 11:50 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by ZeCanon View Post
Started racing in March, was a 3 by April. Took the rest of the year off to mtb race, came back the next March and was a 2 by June, got my cat 1 a year later.
Cyborg
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Old 11-04-09, 12:00 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Grumpy McTrumpy View Post
that is true. in fact, because of the same phenomenon that I speak of, your P123 race would be the smallest field size. It is common to see a P123 race with less than ten riders in the same event as a 4 race with over 50.

in the capital district RR this year I was definitely climbing at 4.2w/kg and I just watched them ride away from me. cat 4 race.

at the GVCC race at Bloomfield this year the winners were putting in times that I could not come close to matching on the hills. I was over 4 w/kg as well.

I could go on all day with this. We have very very few crits and almost nothing flat enough to have a true pack finish. If you want that kind of racing, you have to travel to NYC or places south.
I've had similar experiences in the 5's. My 1 hour NP for Tokeneke was just shy of 4 watts/kg and I placed 17th in a field of 50. Did the final 10' climb at 4.4 watts/kg.
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Old 11-04-09, 12:04 PM
  #40  
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This poll is telling me three things:

1) If you don't upgrade within 2 years, it's going to take you a long time.
2) Most () people upgrade within that 2 years.
3) I have crappy athletic genes.
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Old 11-04-09, 12:04 PM
  #41  
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Local guy went from 5->2 last season.. but it wasn't me.

I'm not even a 4 yet, so I'll have to get back to this thread later (hopefully). I hope to make it to the 3's in at most two years, we'll see.

Hocam, what was your 1-hour AP back then, out of curiosity?
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Old 11-04-09, 12:07 PM
  #42  
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I'm not that far off from the points now. If my power numbers go up by a similar amount to what they did last season, then I should be able to get there.
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Old 11-04-09, 12:09 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by txvintage View Post
Cyborg
I came to road racing with a Pro mtb license already, so it's not as impressive as it sounds. I already knew how to ride and train, just not how to race.

I did win my last cat 4 race, a road race, by 12 minutes though
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Old 11-04-09, 12:15 PM
  #44  
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It took me 2 season basically. When I took an emphasis off FTP, and put time into 3-8 minute power is when I did a lot better. I think someone with a slightly lower FTP and significantly more power in the short duration will win more in the North East/Mid Atlantic road races. I think you need the FTP, endurance, tempo (really mostly a mix of endurance and vo2 max if you think about how these races play out... except for maybe Hilltowns)to sit in until the end, and the medium duration, high end power to win it. So this year I will try to focus on this stuff. Any thoughts?
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Old 11-04-09, 12:25 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by mattm View Post
Local guy went from 5->2 last season.. but it wasn't me.

I'm not even a 4 yet, so I'll have to get back to this thread later (hopefully). I hope to make it to the 3's in at most two years, we'll see.

Hocam, what was your 1-hour AP back then, out of curiosity?
I'll have to check when I get home but I'm guessing around 240-250, NP 280, 71 kg.
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Old 11-04-09, 02:27 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by td.tony View Post
I've only done 3 crit races so far but my last race I placed somewhere in the top 15 out of 45, I still don't have enough sprinting power to place.
A good sprint is always great to have, but it doesn't dictate whether you will win a crit or not as I am sure others on here will attest to. I have a terrible sprint but have been on the podium of every crit I raced in this yr but one (this is my first season on the bike and racing). If you build your FTP and 5min power, you can literally string out the field so much, when the last 3-4 laps come around there is nobody left to sprint against at the end. Usually it is only riders that have that 5min or strong FTP at the end you have to worry about.

I race in So Cal and I have seen guys kill it in crits with no sprint. They just get out there and beat the hell out of the field for 45min, and by the time the last laps come around, nobody has anything left in the tank and they solo in for the win!

IMHO, there is nothing cooler than winning a crit like that ^^!!!
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Old 11-04-09, 02:49 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by pjcampbell View Post
It took me 2 season basically. When I took an emphasis off FTP, and put time into 3-8 minute power is when I did a lot better. I think someone with a slightly lower FTP and significantly more power in the short duration will win more in the North East/Mid Atlantic road races. I think you need the FTP, endurance, tempo (really mostly a mix of endurance and vo2 max if you think about how these races play out... except for maybe Hilltowns)to sit in until the end, and the medium duration, high end power to win it. So this year I will try to focus on this stuff. Any thoughts?
Yeah, I win crits on my 1' power, not my FTP.
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Old 11-04-09, 03:12 PM
  #48  
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half a season to a 3
full season to a 2
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Old 11-04-09, 03:25 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by pjcampbell View Post
It took me 2 season basically. When I took an emphasis off FTP, and put time into 3-8 minute power is when I did a lot better. I think someone with a slightly lower FTP and significantly more power in the short duration will win more in the North East/Mid Atlantic road races. I think you need the FTP, endurance, tempo (really mostly a mix of endurance and vo2 max if you think about how these races play out... except for maybe Hilltowns)to sit in until the end, and the medium duration, high end power to win it. So this year I will try to focus on this stuff. Any thoughts?
wouldnt any good training program would include a mixture of endurance miles, ftp work, vo2max work, and high end stuff? it would just depend on the time of the year.

everyone responds differently to training stimuli, but I dont think i'd do very well by pounding out a bunch of vo2max intervals over the next 6 weeks, unless my goal was to be a christmas group ride hero and otb when racing starts in march/april.
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Old 11-04-09, 03:30 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
This poll is telling me three things:

1) If you don't upgrade within 2 years, it's going to take you a long time.
2) Most () people upgrade within that 2 years.
3) I have crappy athletic genes.

4) people who didn't upgrade within 2 years aren't posting to this thread.
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