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What is the safest cycling race discipline?

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What is the safest cycling race discipline?

Old 04-24-20, 03:19 PM
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DeathCurse7
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What is the safest cycling race discipline?

Hey so I want to get into racing and I did my first crit race and crashed at 30 mph luckily it was not to bad just a sore wrist and road rash. I really enjoy endurance sports and don't want to have a bad accident and be on a wheelchair for the rest of my life. So I was wondering what is the safest discipline in cycling? (Mountain biking, cycle cross, road racing, etc)
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Old 04-24-20, 04:33 PM
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Old 04-24-20, 04:34 PM
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Probably Zwifting... and only half joking. But if you're determined to go outside, I would reckon time trials to be the "safest," as you're riding alone, and therefore far less likely to have someone run into you.

But then again, it's racing. If you're set on "safe mode," you're not pushing yourself to the limits of your abilities, so you're not trying to win. At that point, why do it at all?
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Old 04-24-20, 04:38 PM
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Hill climbs. Ride your hardest. Those 12 mph crashes don't hurt very much.
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Old 04-24-20, 05:01 PM
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Time trials, however it'll still hurt even if you don't crash.
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Old 04-24-20, 05:08 PM
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Triathlon.

Crit races are dangerous as hell, especially when your in the beginner category (was called Cat 5 when I did them). Too many riders with marginal handling skills taking too many chances.
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Old 04-24-20, 05:15 PM
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Tour de France video game pretty safe
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Old 04-24-20, 05:27 PM
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Bmx racing
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Old 04-24-20, 05:45 PM
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While I have never raced cx, I would think that would be the safest discipline to race between that, MTB and road. With cx the ground is the softest and the discipline has the lowest max speeds. But gravel racing may be the second safest discipline IMO. I would guess that the average wreck is worst for MTBing, but road riding has the greatest chance of a catastrophic wreck.
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Old 04-24-20, 05:51 PM
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Old 04-24-20, 07:30 PM
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Cat 6 racing is not too dangerous.
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Old 04-24-20, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
Cat 6 racing is not too dangerous.
I'm sure Cat-6 racers get taken out all the time by pedestrians, inline skaters, and dog walkers sharing the same courses.
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Old 04-24-20, 07:46 PM
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I'm CAT7Rdr for a reason. CAT6 is just plain nutz!
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Old 04-24-20, 07:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Drew Eckhardt View Post
I'm sure Cat-6 racers get taken out all the time by pedestrians, inline skaters, and dog walkers sharing the same courses.
And e-scooters, of course.
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Old 04-24-20, 08:00 PM
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Originally Posted by DeathCurse7 View Post
Hey so I want to get into racing and I did my first crit race and crashed ...
Hmmm, where could you ride with a big enough group to have a race?
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Old 04-24-20, 08:03 PM
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Individual pursuit is probably pretty safe.
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Old 04-24-20, 08:36 PM
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I don't think road cycling is particularly healthy. Atrial fibrillation, low sperm count, bad posture...

Do it for the fun of it, but don't have any illusions that it's better for your body than natural exercise.
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Old 04-24-20, 08:50 PM
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Thanks alot for your reply!
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Old 04-24-20, 09:48 PM
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As others have mentioned, time trial on a closed course is about the safest you can get, crash doing that and you usually need a mirror to point out the responsible party.

Cyclocross is my favorite, I've had a few crashes doing that but always related to the level of mud and rain, even had one race where I managed to get 2nd because every single racer went down in the same spot over the course of the laps, top 3 finishers only wiped out once there. While I'm sure they happen I've never seen a serious injury at a cross race since sliding usually happens.
Crits are just dangerous. Did 2 of them last year and will do a few this year virus permitting. I'll do my best to hang with the pack but have no intentions of sprinting for the finish line. The 2 I did and 3rd I attended all had crashes in the last 2 laps and at the finish. Claiming a place in a cat 5 race just isn't worth the cost. If you can lead out and stay ahead, go for it otherwise with a crit just hang back and let the leaders go nuts.
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Old 04-24-20, 10:03 PM
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Hill climbs. It'll hurt like hell the entire time. But even if you fall it's relatively safe on the steepest climbs where you probably won't exceed 15 mph.

Time trials may be second but will still involve a risk of crashing if the goal is to clock in a competitive time. There are lots of crashing among the pros in time trials, include practice rides to scout the TT segment. But it's usually a sliding sideways type crash, losing traction on curves. Not quite as bad as a bunch sprint crash with bikes and bodies spattered everywhere.

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Old 04-24-20, 10:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
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1/2 randonneuring
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Old 04-25-20, 01:07 AM
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Havenít seen anyone mention a velodrome yet. Solo velodrome events are good, but I guess that falls under time trialing.

Gravel races seems to splinter up and be more about sustained power than oneís ability to get up in the mix and sprint.
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Old 04-25-20, 01:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
Triathlon.

Crit races are dangerous as hell, especially when your in the beginner category (was called Cat 5 when I did them). Too many riders with marginal handling skills taking too many chances.
Iíve never heard of anyone drowning in a Cat5 crit race, though.
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Old 04-25-20, 04:18 AM
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Originally Posted by smashndash View Post
Havenít seen anyone mention a velodrome yet. Solo velodrome events are good.
I don't know statistics, but because you land on a smooth surface, I wonder whether velodrome races have less serious injuries. Others may have more information.
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Old 04-25-20, 04:23 AM
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There is risk in riding a bike period! The faster that you go (full speed) , where, and when - (the roads-streets) and the time of day/night and the weather conditions-visibility, all can elevate that risk level slightly. Now, racing a bicycle is much like open-wheel auto racing (Formula One / Indy Car) where the two vehicles cannot touch or something typically goes airborne and results in a horrific looking if not catastrophic crash. Lets characterize it this way, "You kant trade a liddle paint, like dem good ole boyz dat say yall no dat rubbin' is ray-sin and da fans ain't jumpin if da bumpers ain't bumping and da cars ain't bangin............................NO CAN DO, you're absolutely nuts if you race where the competitors on bikes think that they are NASCAR or Dirt Track Late Model drivers.

Triathlon has the real athletes! The other bicycle race competitions are largely wusses, pretty boy posers, and the occasional nut that isn't playing with a full deck!
Hey if you can't run with the big dogs, then you've gotta stay on the porch!
If you take it seriously and train and make certain that you are at least a decent swimmer, you will not drown!
There are some idiots that don't take the swimming portion seriously enough. An example is those morons train only in a swimming pool where the temperature is comfortable and there are no waves, current, cloudy-murky-muddy- very cold water where the water is not clear and visibility and swimming in the cold against current with no preparation/training in maintaining direction amidst other swimmers, a few of whom might be unprepared clowns too......... They don't know what they are in for and know the distance isn't much but didn't think that it would be so different than swimming miles of laps in an olympic sized swimming pool.
Triathlons are super fun.
They can be hazardous too, as of all the triathlons of which I have competed, the majority of serious crashes that have occurred to competitors have been due to tire blowouts on downhill sections at high speed causing the competitor to lose control and crash, and there has been at least one competitor that was hit by a car.
The swimming portion has safety crews on kayaks that are there to guard against anyone that wasn't ready for prime time and bit off more than they could chew...
I have competed where the organizers decided it was too dangerous to have the swimming portion of the triathlon because the wind and whitecaps were making it difficult for the safety crew to position themselves. The whitecaps and the 25mph sustained wind with gusts and the 45F outside temp without windchill at the designated start time had the organizers to initially delay then to just eliminate the swim portion and turn the tri into a bi-athlon with only the biking and running portions. This was not a Half Iron Man or anything significant, just the garden variety triathlon in the Columbia SC area several years back.
Rarely do you ever have two cyclists that colide while racing in a triathlon, and it is probably far more rare that anyone drowns! You sometimes have competitors that have heart attacks and require medical transport while on the running portion, occasionally they do die, sometimes it might happen on the bike portion or swim portion but probably 96% of the time if it happens it is during the run (the 3rd and final stage) and not the swim (1st stage) or the bike portion (2nd stage).
There is a significant risk sometimes with auto traffic on certain sections of the bike course depending on the event organizer/the course. By definition, one is covering a great distance at very high speed on public roads which sometimes the participant has only seen the course via a slow automobile drive along the entire course the night before the triathlon.
Triathletes are the real athletes. The dopeheads who gotta be like Lance and only think of the tour de France, not so much, although the ones that are actually racing in July in France on live television are real athletes even if they trust that the bike goes better with dope. The typical very fit, non pro, avid cyclist who does all the local bike shop rides, isn't in the same league with triathlon competitors, unless they are also tri competitors or former tri-competitors, marathon runners or serious swimmers.
Novice triathlon competitors who are strong swimmers or who are strong marathon runners will typically kick the butts of novice triathlon competitors who come from the cycling hobby even if those cycling folks have the latest and greatest equipment because unless they also have better than average swimming and running skills, the strong swimmers and the strong runners will clean the clocks of the cycling hobbyist with great equipment but average or less swimming & running skills.
Now, you'll find that the best triathlon winners have no overall weaknesses and they will also be riding the best equipment available. Somebody from the swim or marathon world that is a novice tri competitor will kick the butt of a novice tri competitor from the cycling hobby, even if that swim person or marathon person is riding something minimally adequate or outdated and the hobby cyclist is on the best equipment. You just cannot overcome the deficiencies in swim and run and likely the transitions if you are only average or less at swimming / running while up against someone strong in those areas.
It is a fun sport that you'd really enjoy when we all can gather in large groups again.
The coolest part is the tri people. They don't "judge" based on the equipment and how much you might have forked out in dollars for it, they reserve "judgement" for what you can produce with your bicycle, your swimming and running. They have seen all the posers who believe you can buy greatness without actually becoming a great swimmer and at least a better than average runner but quickly realize that no, it doesn't happen that way at all.
The most fun is that the courses vary greatly depending on weather and temperature and like a golf course could be more difficult or slightly easier depending on such conditions. I recommend that anyone that thinks they might enjoy doing a tri, to give it a go, but make certain that you train seriously enough and make certain to train in realistic, compareable open water conditions.
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