I think it is great that USAC is trying to get away from folks racing to registration for Nationals for seeding, and adpoting some sort of national points system instead to try to let the most deserving / best racers in the country get a good spot on the starting grid. But does anyone know how this is all going to shake out? Are local elite racers going to have to drop down in other classes to earn "masters" points?
Not every series through out the country is run the same. So how do the points all add up? In Michigan, our USAC series has an Elite class, Masters 35 and 45+, B class and C class. But the OVCX has a Master Cat 3 35+ Class. How does that match up for points on the national level?
So for example, are all the Elite racers in Michigan going to have to race down in the "masters" classes in the local races if they want to earn "masters" points for Nationals? That would also deny them a chance at taking money for the winners of the races they can earn in the Elite race. And for the guys that race in the masters classes that are not quite Elite status, it would not be fair for them either to get shelled by faster racers week after week.
With the growth and popularity with cross in the US, is it time to scrap the old A, B, C type clasifications, and just go with the USAC Cat 1,2,3,4 status across the country for sanctioned races? So when it comes to Nationals you race Cat and age. (Example -- Cat 1 Masters 35-39, Cat 2 Masters 35-39, Cat 3 Masters 35-39 etc.)
Any one else want to stir the pot or can shed more light on the subject?
I actaully contacted USA Cycling on this very topic and they were not helpful at all. In Northern California we still use the A,B,C system and this has essentially killed us this year for Nationals because we get no points, according to USA Cycling. One promoter in Norcal has gone to the point system (CCCX), but not the others. Promoters are struggling because they don't want to be affiliated with USA Cycling, follow their rules, pay them money, require licenses, etc.... It only hurts the racers in the end. There are a lot of good racers here in California. I race against 4-6 present and former national champions on any given week. But with this new system I think none of them or any other riders in Norcal will go to Natz because we will be in the back row - or close to it. And that is a shame.
Well, I have been following the ranking system for a few weeks now. And I have to say I am impressed and like it very much. Kind of a crossresult.com rip off, but it will work and is cool to see where you place at a local and national level. And it seems to be accurate. I also like the race predictor feature they are using for nationals (again rip off) but it is cool. I feel the new points/ranking system that USAC is using finally adds value to the racer spending $60 bucks, and makes the promoters that use USAC more valuable as well.
What I don't see or understand is how do you incorporate the current Category system? Does your Cat no longer mean anything any more if you never cat up, but keep getting into races that earn you a better ranking? Can the points system help determine or tell people when they need to move up to the next Cat? Should you be able to earn better ranking points if your a cat 2 vs. a cat 3 and you both do the same race? This might encourage people to cat up on their own if they are chasing the ranking game instead of sandbaging....
But like everything else. This is my 2 cents.