- Any 4th cat roadies on here – is it fun?
monkeyfudger I’d get a second opinion about going hard/race ready this early. I can only talk from my experience, and that is that all the guys that were wired early this year went onto burn out. Some took a mid season break and came back to do well.Posted 6 years ago
Loved my first road race. Fully intended to do some more this year, but crashed and spent it sat around not able to ride instead 🙁
Next year though…
Enjoyed racing out on the roads more than doing crits, less aggro/ego but still just as competitive, plus the courses tend to be a bit more interesting 🙂Posted 6 years ago
TiRed – Member
Kryton – Hog Hill can be a beast. Vets don’t have to go up the hill. 4ths do. Hillingdon is a smoother circuit but as I said, the racing is very competitive. Five crashes in two races for Cat3, none for Cat4 so far
Suddenly I feel great about being 41…. But as they say, it’s better to have raced and lost than never to have raced at all….Posted 6 years ago
Oldgit, it was just the last 20 mins of the ride, it’s normally a pretty manageable pace for the rides we do, reckon they just fancied seeing if they could drop me haha. It’s difficult ain’t it, reckon I need moar power but I’m trying to keep the training load pretty light. We’ll see, I’ll be hoping just to finish, also hoping to race some XC and ENDURO too where I know what to expect/train for.Posted 6 years ago
“Go Race” events are for under 16s.
I’ve raced in the che Castle combe series which is hard work, lots of fast, talented, experienced riders seem to enter, some easily good enough for a higher standard but who just stick in the 4s. Average speed was about 40 km/h for an hour with a brutal headwind for 1/3 of a lap. The biggest shock I had was how quick the race was from the off, no messing about, gun goes bang, clip in and then straight out at 40 km/h down the straight so you need a good warm up first, casually lapping the car park for ten minutes wont help. You really need a turbo trainer or rollers.
Havent seen a crash yet, though no one will thank you for weaving around. 99% of accidents are through corners where the inexperienced can not hold their line and drift to the outside. Again this is something that rollers will help you with as they encourage good pedaling stroke and concentration. You dont need a super bike, quite a few were on good alu frames, you dont need deep carbon wheels either. You can hang around at the back if you are nervous but be prepared to be caught out on the sudden bursts of pace as you will need to work hard to keep up.
A few sessions at a velodrome will also help your cornering and how to hold your line!! Go for it, its great fun and a really good beasting!!Posted 6 years ago
“Go Race” events are for under 16s.
No, Go-Ride Races are for U16s.
Go Race races are most definitely for novices. There was a ladies Go Race at Hillingdon on Saturday. Otherwise I agree with everything you said. Right down to staying in Cat4.Posted 6 years ago
If I took out a BC bronze membership with provisional license (no points) to try out, assume I can upgrade to silver and a full license if I decide to do a few more?Posted 6 years ago
If I took out a BC bronze membership with provisional license (no points) to try out, assume I can upgrade to silver and a full license if I decide to do a few more?
For some races you need at least a silver membership to be able to race. Probably the sensible option as you get some liability insurance for racing that the bronze doesnt have.Posted 6 years ago
OK, so silver membership with provisional licence then upgrade to full if I like it?Posted 6 years ago
Yeah that should be fine was what i did last yearPosted 6 years ago
Cheers Omar…Posted 6 years ago
Sounds like most of the STW TrainerRoad team are going to be road racing next year 🙂Posted 6 years ago
OK, so silver membership with provisional licence then upgrade to full if I like it?
That’s the best way in yes.
Be aware that with a Provisional Licence, you have to pay a bit extra at sign on for a Day Licence.
It’s cos a Provisional Licence doesn’t have the required insurance level. However a couple of £5 Day Licence fees is better than buying a full licence for £34 and then deciding that you don’t like racing after one ride!
Sounds like most of the STW TrainerRoad team are going to be road racing next year
Haha wonder if we’ll bump into one another? Without the actual bumping hopefully….Posted 6 years ago
Anyone fancy knocking up some Team STW/TR jerseys?!Posted 6 years ago
Ah thanks, I didn’t know about the Go Race events.Posted 6 years ago
Are you guys sure about the licence issue, Cross events are fine with bronze and a provisional licence, no further fees payable.Posted 6 years ago
benji not raced BC since it was BCF, but I think it’s to do with closed circuits.Posted 6 years ago
Anyone fancy knocking up some Team STW/TR jerseys?!
Sadly, you’re not allowed (boo!)
If you race for a club you have to wear their kit, if you’re independent you have to wear as plain a kit as possible.
I started racing 4th cat crits earlier in the year, but progressed pretty quickly and ended up racing against some of the top domestic pros. I absolutely love it and have found it really addictive.
As long as you’re moderately fit you’ll be able to hang in the pack, but although it’s fun zipping along with a fast-moving pack, the real entertainment comes when you can start mixing it up; whether that be launching attacks or sprinting for the win.
So, the more you put in over the winter, the more you’ll get out.
If you’ve never done any group riding, try and do that first, but some places (eg, Cyclopark) run race training sessions which give a good introduction. However, generally the best way to train for racing is racing itself. If you cock up, your peers will soon let you know (in the politest possible terms!), so it can be a pretty steep learning curve.
As for number of races, everything really ramps up through Spring in to Summer. Round London, there are a couple of series that run mid-week and there’s often the possibility of racing both Saturday and Sunday. Not much happens during the Winter due to the likelihood of poor conditions and the fact that BC only rank crits as a maximum of band 5 between November and end-February, so even winning an elite race only gains you 10 points (once you turn roadie, everything becomes about collecting points)Posted 6 years ago
I know its a ‘how long is a piece of string’ question, but what kind of average speed would a cat 4 roadie be churning out on a solo training ride? I generally average 17-19mph on < 40 mile solo rides, would I be too slow?Posted 6 years ago
That’s probably the commonest worry, will I be too slow.
It’s not usually the speed that’s the problem, initially it’ll be the ‘riding in a bunch’ aspect that catches you out. Accelerating out of corners, staying in the wheels, that kind of thing.
Average speed of a 4th cat crit is usually about 23-24 mph which sounds a lot but bear in mind that a group will always move far quicker than a lone rider so 17 avg on your own is easily good enough.Posted 6 years ago
How does the jersey thing work for shop teams, do they have to be registered?Posted 6 years ago
How does the jersey thing work for shop teams, do they have to be registered?
Yes, any commercial team no matter what size whether you are Rapha Condor or Bob’s Bikes needs to pay £175 a year plus another £62 per sponsor which may appear on their jersey. This doesn’t give you any insurance or anything, jut allows you to see ‘Bob’s Bikes’ in the results list – complete farce….Posted 6 years ago
Something to hopefully inspire. This was from today’s race. Cold and wet but still a lot of fun.Posted 6 years ago
Good write up TiRed, I enjoyed reading that!
Hillingdon have done wonders with the 4th cats in particular, that introductory video they have seems to have calmed things down a lot.
I did a round last year in similarly shit conditions (E/1/2/3 race), hoping to do another one this year when I’m in London after Christmas.Posted 6 years ago
Aye that was good that TiRed, are you the scribe for all the other stuff? Just read the “race curious” one and it’s a good read too, will have a scan through the rest I think.Posted 6 years ago
I thought the clothing rule for Cat 4 has been all but waived, it was generally perceived that anyone turning up wanting to race at that level could wear what they wanted?. Sure, it takes balls to turn up in full Sky attire for your first Cat 4 race but I dont see the harm personally, its another person racing which can only be a good thing. Stupid rules and things will only put people off though I appreciate there is an advertising issue somewhere.Posted 6 years ago
If you’re unattached, you are asked to race in as plain a kit as possible. If you rock up in full Sky kit for your first race, you’ll be allowed to race, but likely advised against it for future races.
What you won’t get away with is a load of folk all turning up in a matching team strip that has no affiliation / registraion to BC.
As for putting people off racing, that’s really not an issue at the moment. 3/4 races are massively popular with road races sometimes selling out months in advance.Posted 6 years ago
Thought the jersey thing was 3rd Cat upwards with team shorts?Posted 6 years ago
I thought the clothing rule for Cat 4 has been all but waived, it was generally perceived that anyone turning up wanting to race at that level could wear what they wanted?.
4th Cats can (within reason) wear whatever kit they want so long as its not offensive (ie no racial/political/sexist statements on it) and fulfils the other clothing obligations (so no sleeveless tops for example).
Once you reach 3rd Cat or above then you either wear the kit of the club listed on your licence or, if you’re not in a club, plain colours (usually black).
You can’t just go and knock up your own “Team STW Forumite” clothing – clubs and teams have to be affiliated as a way of proving that the name, clothing design and sponsors are all actually true rather than a rider attempting to sound like they’re sponsored by loads of companies or someonne isn’t trying to rip off an existing team name or kit design.
The rules are there for a reason and they’re not supposed to be too arduous although MTBers have historically always been very anti things like rules, governing bodies and organisation… 😉Posted 6 years ago
I like rules, keeps the riff-raff out.
I’ll be wearing my finest club kit 🙂Posted 6 years ago
Yes I wrote “Race Curious” too. And most of the Cat 4 reports. I’ve managed to encourage half a dozen new racers to have a go in the past few months. Steve was one, and he did very well.
As for kit. Officially, Cat 4 is anything goes. But if you are in a BC affiliated club then you are expected to ride in their team kit. At Cat 3 you ride in your club kit or plain. At Cat 2 and above, our club supply the kit.Posted 6 years ago
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