- Timing System
- Cyclocross Numbers
- Number Handout at Belgian Club
- Season Pass
- Cross Categories
- Cross Labs
- Equipment Regulations
...or as they're properly known the Canadian National Cyclocross Championships
As pretty much everyone knows, they will be held on the last weekend of October.
Things you need to know about Nationals
- Equipment: Nationals are run under strict UCI rules. You must race with fully compliant equipment. Commisaires will check tire width, etc for all competitors. See post on equipment below.
- Race Licence: You must hold a current full UCI race licence in good standing from one of Canadian Cycling's Provincial affiliates i.e. MCA, Ontario Cycling, etc. A citizen licence or MCA general membership does not qualify.
- Open Races: Although not Nationals' races, 'open' races will be held in conjunction with the Nationals weekend to allow members of the cycling public who don't hold a race licence to partake in the excitement of this major event. If you want to say you raced at Nationals you'll need to get a UCI licence. It's easy. See the MCA web site.
We'll be using a new chip timing system this year. This is a requirement for Nationals, but is something the cross committee has been looking at for a long time and the two just go naturally together. This should allow for less results confusion, much quicker posting of results, posting of split times, and the possibility of a virtual replay of your race vs everyone else in your category.
Things you need to know about the timing system
- You will be provided a unique chip that will be linked to your race number. Take care of them both. If you lose one or the other and race without both you will not be given a race result. If you lose either you can purchase new ones, but it may take more time on race day than you have. Avoid disappointment and look after them.
- Being entered into the system the first time will take time: Before you can be tracked by the timing system you must be entered into the system. Obtaining your race number, timing chip, and being entered into the system will take only a couple of minutes. But consider that when 50 other people are attempting to do the same on race day, you might wait as long 60 to 90 minutes when your race starts in 60 and you haven't even warmed up. I highly recommend that you attend the race number night at the Belgian Club, see below, where there will be extra volunteers and the process will go a lot smoother (or at least you can socialize and have a beer while waiting). Note that race days are on a very tight schedule and races cannot be held because riders failed to give themselves enough time to account for this.
- Will I need to pay a deposit for the chip or timing system? There is no deposit for the chip. You will note a small increase in race fees this year. The timing system is extremely expensive. The cyclocross committee has instituted a development fee that is already included in your race fee.
We will be using cloth numbers again this year.
Things you need to know about numbers
- New numbers for cross season: You will be assigned new numbers for the cyclocross season, i.e. you cannot use your road numbers.
- What's your category: In order to obtain the proper number you'll first need to know which category you'll be racing in. See below.
- Take care in the placement of your numbers: Make sure your numbers are clearly visible when they are on your jersey and you are in the riding position. You'll likely have to test and move a couple of times, but it's for your own good to get it right. We will be using a chip timing system, but the commissaires are ultimately responsible for order of finish and if they can't make out your number you won't be counted. See here for a good guideline.
- The numbers wash well: Remove them from your jersey and wash after each race without the pins.
- Number deposit: No number deposit will be required this season.
- Being entered into the system the first time will take time: You cannot race without new numbers. Obtaining your race number, timing chip, and being entered into the system will take only a couple of minutes. But consider that when 50 other people are attempting to do the same on race day, you might wait as long 60 to 90 minutes when you're panicking and your race is off in 30. I highly recommend that you attend the race number night at the Belgian Club, see below, where there will be extra volunteers and the process will go a lot smoother (or at least you can socialize and have a beer while waiting). Note that race days are on a very tight schedule and races cannot be held because riders failed to give themselves enough time to account for this.
Number Handout Night at the Belgian Club
Number and timing chips will be handed out at the Belgian Club on Thursday September 4th from 7 till approximately 9 pm. As noted above, I highly recommend that people attend this to avoid race day frustration. If you cannot attend you may have someone else do this for you if they bring your race licence with them.
We regret that there will not be a season pass this year.
Cyclocross races are run in ability categories. See this post from 2012 for an explanation of categories.
- New riders: Although fun for all, excelling at the higher levels of cyclocross requires a unique combination of strength and skills. All riders new to cyclocross must start in the CX4 category (C Event). Exceptionally strong road or mountain bike racers or racers with cyclocross experience from other jurisdictions can apply to the cyclocross coordinator Gary Sewell gsewell at mts dot net for an exemption. Apply directly to the coordinator. Directing your request elsewhere will delay your application.
- Moving categories: Currently (2014) we run three events combining different ability categories.
- Cyclocross is an intense, short sport. It is the 800m or 1500m of cycling, not a 10k or marathon. We DO NOT move people up just so they can race longer.
- Because everyone on the course affects the flow of a race we try to balance the ability of everyone taking part within an event i.e. in the B event all the men and all the women should be of roughly the same ability. As such, move-ups are based on whether you're finishing at the top of your combined event, NOT whether you are beating all the other men or women in your category.
- Provincials are the exception: Provincials (and Nationals) are based on age categories, not ability categories.
- Category lists for 2014: The listing of who races in which category (based on previous results) is here.
- Online pre-registration: Please pay attention to your category when you register online. The systems are not smart enough to validate if you are registering for the correct category. You'll have to race in your proper category on race day.
- Kidz Races: Many organizers also run 'Kidz' races for riders 11 years old and younger. Free of charge. See each race's technical package for details about whether there will be a Kidz race and whether they'll need a licence or not.
- Seeding is based on your finish in previous races (last year's for the first race of the new season, this year's for races after that).
- Because all riders on the course affect the dynamics of the race and we don't start different catergories (male and female for example) at staggered times, seeding is unisex and based on everyone within your event i.e. in the C event it would be based on all male CX4 riders and all female CX4 riders combined.
- Riders who do not pre-register will NOT be seeded.
- See the important note re: Marshalling below
- Please refer to this post for additional information.
- Riders are required to marshall at the start area 20m behind the start line 10 minutes before their posted start time (assuming the previous race has completed).
- Riders should check the seeding list posted at race sign-in and assemble in approximate order at the staging area.
- Call ups to the start line will happen at this time. Although there is a lot of nervous pre-race energy please be quiet at this time. Riders who miss their call-up will start from the back of the race. In the past we have been flexible, but with the number of racers involved can no longer afford to be.
The one and only cross labs where new riders can learn technique and more experienced riders can work on their technique will be offered on a couple of evenings in early September. These are not an MCA event.They are offered by members of the cyclocross community who have at one time or another been successful racers. They are offered where is, as is. Damage to bikes is not uncommon in cyclocross and injuries may happen. By participating, you assume all risk.
Dates: Sept 10 and 24th 6:30 p.m. - 8 p.m
Location: Canadian Mennonite University, 500 Shaftesbury Blvd.
See this post for more details.
Things you need to know about equipment to race cyclocross
- Made in Manitoba: The equipment rules that apply to most racers closely follow the UCI rules. See this table to see what that means for 2014. We have always allowed looser rules for beginners to ease access into cyclocross and that continues with the C Event (CX4 men, CX4 women, and citizen racers). Note though that in all the categories, even races open to the public, there are some minimum requirements that apply.
- Cyclocross Nationals: Nationals races are run under strict UCI rules. See this table. This applies to EVERYONE participating regardless of what looser regulations you were allowed to race under during the regular season. The exception is that there will be 'open' races for members of the public held in conjunction with Nationals. Although they'll be awesome they aren't Nationals races and so the same rules don't apply.
- Compression tights: UCI rules prohibit the use of compression tights/leggings during competition. If you use them you will forfeit your results.
- Jerseys: UCI rules prohibit the use of trade team/national federation jerseys of which you are not a member. You must race in your club jersey or if you don't belong to a club (which you should to contribute to the community) a plain jersey. We all have our heroes and favourite teams, but if you turn up to race in your Sky, Trek, Italian federation, Tour de France, or retro Eddy Merckx jersey you'll be turned away.
Cross is about community. We have the most vibrant cross scene in the country because of thousands and thousands of hours of volunteer work. It's not cool not to belong to a club and contribute. And it's not cool to show up to race and never help tear down. Just sayin'