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Are Races Available for folks over 50?

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Old 05-21-18, 01:56 PM
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TKJava
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Are Races Available for folks over 50?

I wanted to find out if there are any bike races for the over 50 population. I would be very interested in participating in an amateur bike race that ran 50 miles or so. Not sure what the exact definition of a grand fondo is other than a "big race" but I think it would be a lot of fun to try one for my age category. Is there such a thing out there?
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Old 05-21-18, 06:57 PM
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There are master' classes for 35+, 45+ and 55+ and maybe more .... i have seen a lot of guys over 65 who raced in the 55+ class and were really fast too.

Basically, on most race weekends, numerous classes race, from nine-year-olds to the elderly, usually over the same course .... for road races the stronger classes do more laps.

Check for these guys or groups like them ...I am sure if you google "bike races in {location] you will find a few promoters with scheduled events near enough to you.
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Old 05-21-18, 07:31 PM
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I've done a bit of racing, but never a grand fondo. It looks like they could be a fun event. I think they try to make make it a first class experience, with good food, entertainment, etc.
A good resource to start might be your LBS - they should know some about upcoming events, or at least were to steer your for more info. In my case, they got me in contact with a local amateur racer who represented the shop - he helped me a lot.
USA Cycling is also an excellent resource to find upcoming events.

Lots of wicked fast guys 50+! (me these days: not so much!)
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Old 05-21-18, 08:34 PM
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Delaware has an annual senior Olympics which includes one or more races with various divisions. Not sure if they still do this but the races ended with a few laps on the Dover Downs Race Track with its banked track. I would think that other states have similar senior Olympics.
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Old 05-22-18, 03:40 AM
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Check out American Bicycle Racing

In the Chicago area, there were plenty of men racing in the 50+ categories. And they were fast!
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Old 05-22-18, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by TKJava View Post
I wanted to find out if there are any bike races for the over 50 population. I would be very interested in participating in an amateur bike race that ran 50 miles or so. Not sure what the exact definition of a grand fondo is other than a "big race" but I think it would be a lot of fun to try one for my age category. Is there such a thing out there?
Are you talking real racing or just a timed event?

Grand Fondo's are usually timed events, not an actual race per say. They also may have a KOM for some climbs and award prizes for the fastest up the climb but they are not really races. They are usually pretty tough too. George Hincappie has one in the Greenville, SC area that is close by and it is a pretty hard ride of over 7,000 ft of climbing. There are a lot of pro riders now training in the Greenville-Asheville, NC area due to the fantastic roads and climbs.

As for racing, that's tough on the road since those would probably have to be sanctioned if it were a true race and that might involve getting certified. Then of course are the tracks. There are Velodromes and Criterium courses that do involve actual races. Fortunately, I happen to live really close to both a Velodrome and a closed Criterium course along with a world class BMX course. All of them are provided free by the city with a few stipulations. Velodrome is certified riders only. You have to pass a training course before they let you out on the oval. 5 bucks and you can rent a bike too. Fixed gear only and no brakes. Our Velodrome holds weekly events and if you are certified, you can enter. They have also hosted the Nationals a couple of times along with NCAA cycling championships. The criterium course is 1.1 miles and closed to traffic so you have the course to yourself. They do have racing there but if you are interested in racing where money is involved, you have to be certified as Cat 1, 2, 3 etc. There is a Masters division but don't be fooled, you have to average 20+mph just to keep pace and the speed goes way up from there. Cat 1's usually average 30+.

Now, if all you are looking for is a timed event, check out your local ride events in your area. Chances are that some of the larger events will be timed and they usually have groupings for ages.

john
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Old 05-22-18, 12:36 PM
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Also look at time trials. Short and fast... 24 miles?

Randonneuring may be something you're wanting. Short to very long multi-day events. I think there are both competitive aspects of it as well as just finishing.
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Old 05-22-18, 01:16 PM
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Northeast?
Here you go:

Home - Northeast Masters Cycling Association

-Bandera
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Old 05-22-18, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by rutan74 View Post
Are you talking real racing or just a timed event?

Grand Fondo's are usually timed events, not an actual race per say. They also may have a KOM for some climbs and award prizes for the fastest up the climb but they are not really races. They are usually pretty tough too. George Hincappie has one in the Greenville, SC area that is close by and it is a pretty hard ride of over 7,000 ft of climbing. There are a lot of pro riders now training in the Greenville-Asheville, NC area due to the fantastic roads and climbs.

As for racing, that's tough on the road since those would probably have to be sanctioned if it were a true race and that might involve getting certified. Then of course are the tracks. There are Velodromes and Criterium courses that do involve actual races. Fortunately, I happen to live really close to both a Velodrome and a closed Criterium course along with a world class BMX course. All of them are provided free by the city with a few stipulations. Velodrome is certified riders only. You have to pass a training course before they let you out on the oval. 5 bucks and you can rent a bike too. Fixed gear only and no brakes. Our Velodrome holds weekly events and if you are certified, you can enter. They have also hosted the Nationals a couple of times along with NCAA cycling championships. The criterium course is 1.1 miles and closed to traffic so you have the course to yourself. They do have racing there but if you are interested in racing where money is involved, you have to be certified as Cat 1, 2, 3 etc. There is a Masters division but don't be fooled, you have to average 20+mph just to keep pace and the speed goes way up from there. Cat 1's usually average 30+.

Now, if all you are looking for is a timed event, check out your local ride events in your area. Chances are that some of the larger events will be timed and they usually have groupings for ages.

john
Read this: New to Racing? Here's a tip or two

For USAC sanctioned road races, including criteriums, you need a USAC racing license. Don't worry, the qualifications are a bike, a helmet, and a pulse. Every one starts out as a Cat 5, regardless of age. After 10 mass-start race finishes, you can upgrade to Cat 4. Further upgrades are based on accumulating points through placings and/or experience. Look on the USAC website or www.bikereg.com for races in your area. When you sign up, you should also be able to purchase a one-day racing license (no sense in buying an annual license if you don't like it).

Also, if you're not already doing so, start going on the local group rides. More likely than not, there will be a Saturday morning one and a Tuesday evening one.
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Old 05-22-18, 04:48 PM
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Originally Posted by TKJava View Post
I wanted to find out if there are any bike races for the over 50 population. I would be very interested in participating in an amateur bike race that ran 50 miles or so. Not sure what the exact definition of a grand fondo is other than a "big race" but I think it would be a lot of fun to try one for my age category. Is there such a thing out there?
Next August/September ask around at bike shops or look online for cyclocross races in your area. The older age categories are usually Masters 45+, 55+, sometimes 65+.
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Old 05-22-18, 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by TKJava View Post
I wanted to find out if there are any bike races for the over 50 population. I would be very interested in participating in an amateur bike race that ran 50 miles or so. Not sure what the exact definition of a grand fondo is other than a "big race" but I think it would be a lot of fun to try one for my age category. Is there such a thing out there?
Here's an example of a local race, something like this is what you'd be looking for: https://www.bikereg.com/8th-regalado-road-raceRoad




As a 50+ Cat 5, you'd be eligible to do either the straight Cat 5 field or the 35+4/5 field. I would recommend the 35+ field. It won't be easier, in fact, I'd bet it's for certain going to be harder, but you'd be lining up with adults.

Last edited by caloso; 05-22-18 at 05:07 PM.
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Old 05-22-18, 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Here's an example of a local race, something like this is what you'd be looking for: https://www.bikereg.com/8th-regalado-road-raceRoad




As a 50+ Cat 5, you'd be eligible to do either the straight Cat 5 field or the 35+4/5 field. I would recommend the 35+ field. It won't be easier, in fact, I'd bet it's for certain going to be harder, but you'd be lining up with adults.
Yes thanks, this is great there's a few here that are not that far away from me.
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Old 05-22-18, 09:32 PM
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Old 05-25-18, 05:15 PM
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You might also search to see if there are any time trials within a reasonable distance from where you live. Itís a great way to start racing, but a little less risky as generally youíre not riding in a group nor drafting.
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