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yea, GP looks a bit diluted by the new series.
great to see more high profile CX racing in the states.

hope to do the boulder series in 09
and perhaps a couple others...

this year will be my first as a cat 2. Don't want to shell out the 150$ for the UCI just yet. we've got a lot of local races to help me step up the game first
 

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While still trying to be an optimist, I see this as causing nothing but problems down the road. The UCI process in the US is a joke, as there are too many races that really don't rise the occasion but still have the cash to plunk down for a UCI permit every year. Let's face it, the talent pool in the US is not enough to support having the number of UCI races we have a year. Nor is there enough support for the few "national-level" riders that do exist to attend each and every event.

Quickly looking at the schedule, promoters are increasingly setting up conflicting dates and further diluting the fields. For instance, the three day Ohio UCI race weekend goes straight up against the GP of Gloucester. WTF! I'm all for building the sport but believe that the various efforts underway will only lead to a 1990's NORBA-style implosion before too long.
 

· You call that running?
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If the GP is still a qualifier for Nationals call-ups and Worlds team selection it will still get real good fields. I'd like to think this will help the quality of the fields for the NACTPC (terrible name they picked) without hurting the USGP, but we shall see.
 

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They are going to have to buy a Texas size trophy to fit the "North American Cyclocross Trophy Point Championship" on.

I am not too sure where this is all headed but one would think that a promoter would look at the difference between the Norba Nationals(yeah I still call it that) and the Mountain States Cup. Granted the MSC typically has a larger amateur field to draw from but they run one heck of a show where as the National races are in a downhill slide. Oh yeah, there is that Tour of America sideshow too to look at for a case study.

Concerning amateurs whom make up the bulk of the fields, do we really need a UCI ranked race? I know I don't and would much prefer belonging to an organization that supports those who really pay the bills.
 

· Cyclocross is Seasonal?
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The Sundance Kid said:
If the GP is still a qualifier for Nationals call-ups and Worlds team selection it will still get real good fields. I'd like to think this will help the quality of the fields for the NACTPC (terrible name they picked) without hurting the USGP, but we shall see.
Nationals call ups are based on UCI points. The USGP no longer has qualifying spots for Worlds. That's probably a big part of the reason why we are seeing a second national series emerge.

Frankly, I'm psyched to see a second national series.
 

· More Cowbell!
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cxrcr said:
While still trying to be an optimist, I see this as causing nothing but problems down the road. The UCI process in the US is a joke, as there are too many races that really don't rise the occasion but still have the cash to plunk down for a UCI permit every year.
Every one of the races for the new series are existing UCI races that generally turn out a very competitive field. Most of the big guys are already going.

I agree that there are too many UCI races in the US. UCI races in NC and Ohio going up against national caliber UCI races have been going on for a few years now and the new "series" won't change that. Perhaps one or two guys that would have gone to the podunk race will head to the big race instead -- which is a good thing.

If anything, having the national series of existing high profile UCI races might expose those other races for what they are -- a way for second rate elite racers to pick up easy UCI points.
 

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Vegancx said:
Nationals call ups are based on UCI points. The USGP no longer has qualifying spots for Worlds. That's probably a big part of the reason why we are seeing a second national series emerge.

Frankly, I'm psyched to see a second national series.
I understand where you are coming from on the UCI points and a second series. My main concern is that in the madness of growth of cross in the U.S. we don't just have a bunch of crack pot series show up. With good promotion and organization there is no telling how far this can go.
 

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So...question:

What does everything think would make for the most ideal way to organize all of the UCI events currently out there?

If we started with a clean slate, using any of the existing events on the 08 calendar, which ones should be included in ONE national series and why?
 

· More Cowbell!
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bwcross said:
What does everything think would make for the most ideal way to organize all of the UCI events currently out there?
One of the problems is that the US is a really big country. Travel to national races is tough financially and physically. The top level guys (Trebon, Wickes, Johnson, etc.) are traveling to the big races because they know they need to race against the best competition. But the USGP series brought out a lot of second tier racers who traveled to the series too. I wonder what the new series is going to do about that.

Plus, there's the whole new dimension of higher fuel prices. Not only will it be more expensive to drive to far flung races, it's going to be more expensive to fly to national races. And let's not forget how the airlines are charging higher and higher fees for luggage (bike cases).

I think if this series helps out the top guys, then excellent.

But I wouldn't mind more regional series with one national series.

And what to do about the proliferation of meaningless UCI races in the US? Dunno. It seems like promoters think the way to get a really good turnout is to offer UCI points. For the elite racers, you might get a few more relatively fast guys (excluding the big established UCI races) but you also price out some of the local talent. There are people who want to race but have no intention of buying a UCI license.

I might also add that the biggest cyclocross series (in attendance) in the US has absolutely no UCI races.
 

· vegan cyclocross disco
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I think we're all seeing some internal politics/fighting being played out here between promoters/USA Cycling/USGP. It's a shame because it only hurts the sport/racers.

As a local series promoter here in Ohio. I agree there's way to many UCI races but I think it's unfair to point the finger at 'podunk' promoters. The UCI weekend in Ohio has been building and growing for years now and all of the promoters are doing a quality job. They want the best racers and have the sponsors/cash to try to get them.

One national series is enough. USGP is only three weekends, one per month and then everyone went back to their local races. Which is perfect I think. Where they failed was keeping it in the same cities for two years.

So how is 2009 going to play out when Nationals gets moved back to January?
 

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iamandy makes an excellent point. The issue is not as much that there are UCI races in out of the way places, its that there is over saturation and too many UCI race date conflicts for a country such as the U.S. The UCI race formerly held in Hendersonville, NC was an great example of how a race should be set up for the national level, however, it was consistently scheduled against USGP races despite efforts to deconflict the two. While it did draw riders from New England and the west coast every year, it never really attracted the "national level" riders one would expect for a UCI race. That's a tragedy because the two courses there were probably the best I have raced in the US.

Futhermore, I know for a fact that teams trying to send riders to as many US UCI events are facing VERY difficult times. So while the teams and their riders are having to make very tough choices, the promoters are only diluting the talent pool by scheduling conflicts. Its clear that neither USA Cycling, the UCI, or the UCI cyclocross commission have an interest in raising the bar and limiting the amount of UCI permitted races being granted in the US. Rather than taking the coordinating role that only they can, they are lining up with their hands out.
 

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Some excellent points being made

About the dilution of the "value" of UCI points and second tier races. One thing to consider, is that any race series, regardless of it's size, relies upon the masses of the second rate racer (I'm training to get my upgrade to second rate. I'm still stuck at third.) to pay the bills. Europe is able to draw a paying crowd to watch the pros at the top events, thereby guaranteeing large purses and great fields. I don't know if we should or shouldn't be doing things like the Euros do. I do know that the larger country we have to travel across makes for more regional events. Besides, if a bunch of "second tier" racers collect enough points to travel to Europe, then won't they go over and bring back the experience to the whole of the country, not just a few enclaves? Maybe we'd see in the future a few series with points acting as a feeder for a larger late season series culminating in a January national championship. I'm probably wrong on most of this. It usually happens when I'm thinking.
 

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PeanutButterBreath said:
The US is far too large to support a meaningful national CX series.
Not to be wishywashy but, I've kind of always thought a regional curriculum would work out well for cross. So many from each region in each cat/age group get invites to Nats, there's of course alternates in case invited riders decline to go.

Each region sets their own calendar. If you're border line by location and can race two regions then great, but points don't cross regions.

I would be more than happy to say I finished 10th or even 20th in my region rather than 50th or 60th at Nats. It seems to be a more reasonable accomplishment for more of the riders that pay their own way.
 

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Albino said:
Not to be wishywashy but, I've kind of always thought a regional curriculum would work out well for cross. So many from each region in each cat/age group get invites to Nats, there's of course alternates in case invited riders decline to go.

Each region sets their own calendar. If you're border line by location and can race two regions then great, but points don't cross regions.

I would be more than happy to say I finished 10th or even 20th in my region rather than 50th or 60th at Nats. It seems to be a more reasonable accomplishment for more of the riders that pay their own way.
doing regional selection is tough. Cross isn't an evan distribution of talant. You've got a few hot beds and a lot of non-existant scenes.

hold spots for first right of refusal for: past national champs, top 25 americans UCI ranking, previous year's top 10 at nationals, national series leaders etc.
Perhaps have several regional qualifiers as well. Then leave the rest for luck of the draw
 

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Doesn't have to be full coverage. NE, PNW, and CO come to mind as good hubs. Maybe somewhere around the Bay area and I am sure there are at least a couple other places that could foster a good regional series. Mini-series, really -- 2-3 races that local organizers could schedule around so that local racers can see how they stack up on a wider scale.
 
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