Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey, All -

I'm putting together a series in Nashville for next year. It's actually been a lot of fun, and things are coming together for the series quite nicely; however, I've hit another snag and I'd love some input from you.

The races here aren't likely to draw more than one hundred competitors per day. I strongly suspect that less than fifteen of those one hundred will be female racers ranging from ages 14-60.

Right now, I've got six race categories planned:

Men's A
Men's B (35-and-under)
Men's B (over-35)
Men's C
Women's
Juniors'

I'm struggling, because I don't want to slight any female competitors; however, I don't want to over-extend the categories in such a way that I can't financially support the series and I wind up with many, many categories that have fewer than five participants. Awards will go three-deep per category. Female juniors will have the option of racing in the women's category if they so choose. Any suggestions?

If I keep the categories as they are, does anyone have suggestions on when to run the Women's race? I'm planning on racing it with the Juniors and Men's C, which is a thirty-minute race.

One caveat that many of us are aware of, as demonstrated by Katie Compton the past two years, would be to have faster female competitors race in the Men's B or Men's A races, if they wish. In so doing, they would be eligible for the same awards as the men in those categories.

On a different note, is anyone going the the Handmade Bicycle Show in San Jose this week? If so, could you post a thread when you get back? Photos?

As always, thanks.

Dan
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
507 Posts
The recently completed (today was the last race) series in Largo, Florida ran expert and beginner women only. They also ran the children together and the girls held their own. The beginning women ran with the juniors and the experts ran with men's C. This did create a situation last year where a 15 year old kid was racing against his mom, but that just made for some fun for the spectators cheering one or the other on.

Ron
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
189 Posts
danwerle said:
Hey, All -

I'm putting together a series in Nashville for next year. It's actually been a lot of fun, and things are coming together for the series quite nicely; however, I've hit another snag and I'd love some input from you.

The races here aren't likely to draw more than one hundred competitors per day. I strongly suspect that less than fifteen of those one hundred will be female racers ranging from ages 14-60.

Right now, I've got six race categories planned:

Men's A
Men's B (35-and-under)
Men's B (over-35)
Men's C
Women's
Juniors'

I'm struggling, because I don't want to slight any female competitors; however, I don't want to over-extend the categories in such a way that I can't financially support the series and I wind up with many, many categories that have fewer than five participants. Awards will go three-deep per category. Female juniors will have the option of racing in the women's category if they so choose. Any suggestions?

If I keep the categories as they are, does anyone have suggestions on when to run the Women's race? I'm planning on racing it with the Juniors and Men's C, which is a thirty-minute race.

One caveat that many of us are aware of, as demonstrated by Katie Compton the past two years, would be to have faster female competitors race in the Men's B or Men's A races, if they wish. In so doing, they would be eligible for the same awards as the men in those categories.

On a different note, is anyone going the the Handmade Bicycle Show in San Jose this week? If so, could you post a thread when you get back? Photos?

As always, thanks.

Dan
There are very few Katie Compton/Gina Halls.

If the field sizes are all pretty small, one way to do this is to have Women A Women B Women C Jr all run at the same time with a slight separation or staging at the start, finish the Women C earliest. This only works with small fields and a lot of judges to keep track of the scoring.
 

·
Deliciously Ironic
Joined
·
1,006 Posts
Women love promoters who promote women racing!

Thanks for putting on the series, and I think you're doing the right things. Probably best to run the women with the Juniors, but probably not with the Men's C. That being said, it kind of depends how many Men C's you are expecting? But if you stagger the women and the juniors a minute behind the Men C it should be okay.

Don't worry about the "Katie Comptons", promote the race for the majority of your riders, and the majority of your riders will have a good time! You don't mention whether or not there is cash or merchandise for the top three, but medals only can disuade the 'Comptons' from sandbagging with the women (haha) and race up with the Men or Masters.

Maybe offer a discount for first-time Women and Junior riders? Nothing huge, like 2-3 bucks off of regular. Or offer a discount for a GUY if he brings a lady friend first-timer! Gee that actually sounds like a good idea....(writing note to self...)

danwerle said:
Hey, All -

I'm putting together a series in Nashville for next year. It's actually been a lot of fun, and things are coming together for the series quite nicely; however, I've hit another snag and I'd love some input from you.

The races here aren't likely to draw more than one hundred competitors per day. I strongly suspect that less than fifteen of those one hundred will be female racers ranging from ages 14-60.

Right now, I've got six race categories planned:

Men's A
Men's B (35-and-under)
Men's B (over-35)
Men's C
Women's
Juniors'

I'm struggling, because I don't want to slight any female competitors; however, I don't want to over-extend the categories in such a way that I can't financially support the series and I wind up with many, many categories that have fewer than five participants. Awards will go three-deep per category. Female juniors will have the option of racing in the women's category if they so choose. Any suggestions?

If I keep the categories as they are, does anyone have suggestions on when to run the Women's race? I'm planning on racing it with the Juniors and Men's C, which is a thirty-minute race.

One caveat that many of us are aware of, as demonstrated by Katie Compton the past two years, would be to have faster female competitors race in the Men's B or Men's A races, if they wish. In so doing, they would be eligible for the same awards as the men in those categories.

On a different note, is anyone going the the Handmade Bicycle Show in San Jose this week? If so, could you post a thread when you get back? Photos?

As always, thanks.

Dan
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
635 Posts
Woofer said:
There are very few Katie Compton/Gina Halls.

If the field sizes are all pretty small, one way to do this is to have Women A Women B Women C Jr all run at the same time with a slight separation or staging at the start, finish the Women C earliest. This only works with small fields and a lot of judges to keep track of the scoring.
Yeah, just run them all together but sort them out in the end. I would even start them all at the same time if the field is under 15 or so, just make sure the faster women are staged up front. As for race times, it would probably be too hard to seperate & have the lower classes finish up early however, there is a good chance that they will get lapped & finish lap or two shorter than the fast girls. Just be sure to explain this to them at the start & have them keep an eye on the lap counter. If anyone has a problem with racing them all together this is when you encourage them to get more girls out there. Our Womens C categories in the NW (Seattle) have started to get pretty big (I think Portland is even bigger) & thats a good sign.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Ha! That sounds like a great idea. Nashville is an area with a really blossoming cycling community, and there is no reason why we shouldn't have more women participating. I'm going to plan on having the women and juniors race one minute behind the men in the C race. I'm trying to balance the competitiveness of the event and keep folks from getting lapped, worn out, or otherwise discouraged by the event.

If others have suggestions, please either post them in the thread or e-mail me. Thanks again.

Dan
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
459 Posts
Having all of the women racing at one time, in two or more categories, is the solution. But rather than have one group finish earlier... Stagger the starts by 15 minutes, or whatever is appropriate. Happens in NorCal all the time. "A" women go at noon for 45 minutes, with the B/35+ women staging and starting 10-15 minutes later. It will make scoring a hell of a lot easier, and no need to try and pick out which riders get which lap cards as they roll through. Everybody finishes with the leader of the "A" race.

I'd really try to avoid having the women on the course at the same time as the men. I'll generalize here, but most women who are just starting to race are already intimidated by co-ed training rides. Having them race alongside men, even in separate categories will turn them off. Face it, guys are way more aggressive and the women will end up getting shuffled over to the slower lines and out of the way. If you really want to appeal to women racers, have woman-only races.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
494 Posts
I really like the way we do it here in GA. Maybe Mosovich can further comment b/c he is one of our promoters.

We run the Women A with the Men B for 45 minutes and the Women B with the Men C for 30 minutes. The Junior girls can either race Junior or either of the Women's categories. Most of the Junior girls race Womens B (and kick some butt, too!)., It works out really well, and you don't have to sort which women are in which category.

There aren't any Women's Masters categories offered--yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Sadlebred said:
I really like the way we do it here in GA. Maybe Mosovich can further comment b/c he is one of our promoters.

We run the Women A with the Men B for 45 minutes and the Women B with the Men C for 30 minutes. The Junior girls can either race Junior or either of the Women's categories. Most of the Junior girls race Womens B (and kick some butt, too!)., It works out really well, and you don't have to sort which women are in which category.

There aren't any Women's Masters categories offered--yet.

Alas! Sadlebred has interjected! I was hoping that you'd have some input on this.

I'm with you. The Monroe (Georgia) races were a blast, and that seems like a great way to organize the categories. I'm going to bat the idea around a little more, as I'd really like to draw other regional folks here for the series. What may wind up happening is that I'll have smaller cash payouts for the A women and A men, but I really don't want women who are serious about cyclo-cross or, at least, very interested in cyclo-cross, driving over two hours to race thirty minutes, when they would rather race longer.

Now, other questions for you:

1. Is there any way you can put me in touch with one of the Georgia promoters? I've been trying fairly aggressively to contact someone involved with the Georgia series, and I'm getting no response. I'd just like to establish contact to see if there are any regional conflicts, and, if so, how they can be resolved.

2. I'm setting up a website for the series, and I'd love to use a few of your photos. Could you contact me about that? If I use them, how much would you charge?

Thanks.

Dan
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
28 Posts
You may want to contact the folks who do the cross series in Johnson City, TN. You can reach them through their web site, www.msgcross.com. FWIW, they run the women's race with the C men, but start the ladies a minute later, and the juniors behind the ladies. It seems to work well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Women's races

In Wisconsin we do things a little bit differently than what's been mentioned but it has worked out for us very well. Obviously we will be adjusting things a little next year to compensate for the new USAC categories.

We have the Jr Girls and Boys go at the same time but we score two age groups for each. The C Women race either with the C Men or with the Juniors at the discretion of the promoter. Having the C Women with the Juniors is nice because the C Men's race is our largest field. The C race and the Junior race is 30 minutes. The B Women race at the same time as the B Men for 40 minutes. The A Women race at the same time as the 40+/50+ Men for 50 minutes.

There was some reluctance to have the various Women's categories but I argued firmly for it as we had many C Women who stopped racing after one season. They were reluctant to to move up to the A race as we have a fast A Women's field. The B Women's race got the C Women to move up but still keep racing. It really has worked out even better than I had hoped.

Renee
www.madcross.org


danwerle said:
Hey, All -

I'm putting together a series in Nashville for next year. It's actually been a lot of fun, and things are coming together for the series quite nicely; however, I've hit another snag and I'd love some input from you.

The races here aren't likely to draw more than one hundred competitors per day. I strongly suspect that less than fifteen of those one hundred will be female racers ranging from ages 14-60.

Right now, I've got six race categories planned:

Men's A
Men's B (35-and-under)
Men's B (over-35)
Men's C
Women's
Juniors'

I'm struggling, because I don't want to slight any female competitors; however, I don't want to over-extend the categories in such a way that I can't financially support the series and I wind up with many, many categories that have fewer than five participants. Awards will go three-deep per category. Female juniors will have the option of racing in the women's category if they so choose. Any suggestions?

If I keep the categories as they are, does anyone have suggestions on when to run the Women's race? I'm planning on racing it with the Juniors and Men's C, which is a thirty-minute race.

One caveat that many of us are aware of, as demonstrated by Katie Compton the past two years, would be to have faster female competitors race in the Men's B or Men's A races, if they wish. In so doing, they would be eligible for the same awards as the men in those categories.

On a different note, is anyone going the the Handmade Bicycle Show in San Jose this week? If so, could you post a thread when you get back? Photos?

As always, thanks.

Dan
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
That's great that you're able to do that. Your model, by my standards, is one to aim for; however, you mentioned nine different race categories. Assuming that your races include a Men's A race, that makes ten. I don't think it's a wise move for a first-year series in an area that I know doesn't have a lot of cyclo-cross racing to expand the race categories out that far (yet!). In a year or two, after I've hopefully got folks interested in racing, then I'd like to pursue the model you use.

Here's what I've decided on, after all the input I've gotten (and a bit of a search of my conscience)...

10:30 AM: 12-and-under free kids' race (1/2 lap) (most of the courses here are hilly and just shy of two miles in length)
11:00 AM: Men's CX 4/ CX 5 (30 minutes)
11:01 AM: Women's CX 4/ CX 5; Juniors (30 minutes)
11:45 AM: Men's CX 3; Men's Master's (35 +) (45 min)
11:46 AM: Women's Pro/ CX 1/ CX 2 (45 min)
12:45 PM: Men's Pro/ CX 1/ CX 2 (60 min)

The Women's CX 3 competitors will have the option of racing with the CX 4/ CX 5 group or the Women's Pro/CX 1/ CX 2 group. The male juniors are welcome to race with any of the men's groups and the female juniors are welcome to race with any of the women's groups.
Faster women competitors are welcome to race with the Men's CX 3 or the Men's Pro/CX 1/ CX 2 group.

Ugh.

This is a hard process.

Thanks for your help.

Reneec said:
In Wisconsin we do things a little bit differently than what's been mentioned but it has worked out for us very well. Obviously we will be adjusting things a little next year to compensate for the new USAC categories.

We have the Jr Girls and Boys go at the same time but we score two age groups for each. The C Women race either with the C Men or with the Juniors at the discretion of the promoter. Having the C Women with the Juniors is nice because the C Men's race is our largest field. The C race and the Junior race is 30 minutes. The B Women race at the same time as the B Men for 40 minutes. The A Women race at the same time as the 40+/50+ Men for 50 minutes.

There was some reluctance to have the various Women's categories but I argued firmly for it as we had many C Women who stopped racing after one season. They were reluctant to to move up to the A race as we have a fast A Women's field. The B Women's race got the C Women to move up but still keep racing. It really has worked out even better than I had hoped.

Renee
www.madcross.org
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
Why would Categories change anything?

I am not sure why people think that the change to categories is going to change anything? In road racing, it is the promoters that decide whether a race is Pro-1, Pro-1-2, 1-2-3. Why would a promoter NOT be able to determine that the A race is Cat 1-2-3, B race is 3-4, and C race is Cat 4. There is no Pro, and there is no Cat 5. If someone is hearing different for actual USCF sources, please let us know.

As for the original question of where to put the women, it has always been my preference to have the B women race with the C men using a 5 race schedule (not counting kids race if applicable). The first race would be C men, B women, second race B men, third race 35+, 45+, fourth A women, and last would be A men. All classes within the race are for the same length, making it easier on scorers. Its also dangerous having finishers coming through at the same time someone else is going out for another lap.

This schedule is not perfect, but it comes as close as possible in keeping similar speed riders together.
 

·
Strained coccyx etc etc
Joined
·
21,050 Posts
Dan, i've put on the series in memphis for the last three years -- four races per season. our womens' field ranges from 7 or 8 to 2 or 3. then again, our total field draw is less than 30 for most races. we're all about good times and friendship; it's a small, close-knit group of folks. some of us don't see each other until the next season, and then it's like best friends for a few weeks...great bunch of folks.

good to hear you're bringing in a descent field for this part of the country!

we race A, B, C, singlespeed, and Women. no age groups or juniors. if we had juniors, i would include that class, for sure.

good luck.

-J
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top