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Thread: "Nationals in January Sucks"

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    Default "Nationals in January Sucks"

    According to Steve Tilford's new blog post and Adam Craig's interview imbedded within. From a spectator POV, I like nats in January as it gives something interesting to look forward to viewing and media-wise for January. It also has the makings for more epic conditions, although that is always depending on course, location, and weather. I have a problem with his statement that nationals at their current date are not accessible for the grassroots masses. How many of the grassroots masses are going to nationals as participants? Maybe 1%? I would imagine less...

    However, if I was a masters participant or parent of a participant I KNOW I would hate it for exactly the reasons stated. It's hard enough to keep training through mid December when it's dark at 5pm where I live and all weekday riding is done indoors for us 8-5 types, let alone adding in a 3+ week stretch with little to no American racing and lots of family obligations to complicate. I think there's something to be said to the point that this system would interfere with a European campaign/world's prep for elite riders, but how many US riders outside of Compton and Page have shown they care about Europe? There are promising juniors going over there that could benefit from changing the date, but I haven't seen a lot of interest from current elite riders. Maybe if the system would change, that would as well, but I'm not fully convinced. Also, if you're not a pure cross racer like many of the elite women and many of the elite men outside the top 5 or so you're extending your season really late as well.

    I realize US elite riders have a tough act to balance. They are sponsored by US brands so they race in the US to get the sponsors the exposure they're paying for. Maybe changing the date would allow these brands more European exposure, but do they care about that? They haven't shown it thus far by pushing their riders over there. I would posit that the only US elites racing over there are doing so because of their desire to race over their at the highest level of the sport, not because their sponsors are pushing them to. Case in point, the late Amy Domboski.

    I realize I haven't really taken a side here, but I can't see a clear cut reason to go one way or the other--maybe someone can convince me.

    Why was nationals moved to January in the first place?
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by BSUdude View Post

    Why was nationals moved to January in the first place?
    To coincide with the rest of the world's Natz scedules (except Canada) and to have the event in the same year as the Worlds are held atmo.

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    its stupid in the us to have nats in january disconnected from the racing season.

    the ( very few ) elite racers who intend to participate at worlds should race in europe as worlds prep.
    it is a super pita for the rest of the riders... trying to hold fitness for a month after the races stop.
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    -- & for a peanut-gallery'r, damn hard to get direct flights..

    ronnie
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    The solution? More races! It is cold until April. Come on!
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    "Plus, if you stay race fit through the middle of January when do you get time off?"
    What does he mean? This is the season!!
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    American CX dominance continues!!

    oh, wait
    "make the break"

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    One thing I find unfortunate about the CX bubble is the death of XC mtb racing in the Northeast after August(same thing for road racing, but pulled back to JULY). Some of the best MTB races used to happen in the fall, and the road season well, used to be longer than 3 and a half months.

    Now there are just expensive rinky-dink, heavily attended grass criteriums chock full of dweebs with pretty shitty handling skills every fall, and "particpant-based" road events that are like, SO EPIC BRO, in the late-summer.

    The CX season is tooo damnnnn loooong.
    mickey.denoncourt
    BRCA
    Eastern Trail Co

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by suspectdevice View Post
    One thing I find unfortunate about the CX bubble is the death of XC mtb racing in the Northeast after August(same thing for road racing, but pulled back to JULY). Some of the best MTB races used to happen in the fall, and the road season well, used to be longer than 3 and a half months.

    Now there are just expensive rinky-dink, heavily attended grass criteriums chock full of dweebs with pretty shitty handling skills every fall, and "particpant-based" road events that are like, SO EPIC BRO, in the late-summer.

    The CX season is tooo damnnnn loooong.
    Mickey, apparently new englanders have spoken and their voice (i.e. Registration dollars) says that cx trumps mtb and road. Maybe mountain bike races need to evolve (singlespeedapalooza) to draw back the registration dollars.

    I agree though, nats in January is dumb, except for the elite race. But, money talks, and in order to make money, the whole show has to happen together.

    So, who is going to win the masters 20+ this year?
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by suspectdevice View Post
    One thing I find unfortunate about the CX bubble is the death of XC mtb racing in the Northeast after August(same thing for road racing, but pulled back to JULY). Some of the best MTB races used to happen in the fall, and the road season well, used to be longer than 3 and a half months.

    Now there are just expensive rinky-dink, heavily attended grass criteriums chock full of dweebs with pretty shitty handling skills every fall, and "particpant-based" road events that are like, SO EPIC BRO, in the late-summer.

    The CX season is tooo damnnnn loooong.
    You know what, I haven't been racing for very long but I agree with you.

    But if CX season actually occurred when you can't ride MTB trails because you'd damage them, and when riding road sucks because of snow/unsafe conditions, then it would actually make more sense, wouldn't it?

    Paying $35 to race for 30 minutes (and get transportation, and take up most of your day) like plenty of folks will do in NY this weekend is slightly mad.
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveP View Post
    its stupid in the us to have nats in january disconnected from the racing season.

    the ( very few ) elite racers who intend to participate at worlds should race in europe as worlds prep.
    it is a super pita for the rest of the riders... trying to hold fitness for a month after the races stop.
    What's the point of having nats for non elite racers (I include juniors and u23 as elite racers as they are eligible for worlds too) ? Those age group national championships are a complete non-sense. Isn't it like being the national champion of those who sucks ?

    Besides, nats are on january 13. It's hardly a long time after the last cross races of late december.
    --
    T h o m a s

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by sk_tle View Post
    What's the point of having nats for non elite racers (I include juniors and u23 as elite racers as they are eligible for worlds too) ? Those age group national championships are a complete non-sense. Isn't it like being the national champion of those who sucks ?

    Besides, nats are on january 13. It's hardly a long time after the last cross races of late december.
    i agree that having 40 different age grouped "national champs" is dumb, but in America, very few people would pay to watch the elite races so the only way to fund the event is to charge the amateurs a ton of money so they can feel special too, thus subsidizing the cost of hosting the elite races.
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by roseyscot View Post
    i agree that having 40 different age grouped "national champs" is dumb, but in America, very few people would pay to watch the elite races so the only way to fund the event is to charge the amateurs a ton of money so they can feel special too, thus subsidizing the cost of hosting the elite races.
    That first Natz in Providence maybe 9 years ago was the beginning of the end atmo. The volume of people permitted to compete in each category (and many categories are beyond stupid) dumbs down the event.

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    because the reality of cris in the usa is it is a sport of masters, 3s and beginners.
    they enter the races, their entry fees support the entire sport
    without the 125 person cat 3 race the promotors would end up deciding its not worth the effort

    if an "elite" nationals alone were held anywhere in the usa in the middle of winter there would be 50 spectators to watch it..
    usa is not belgium.

    it does boggle my mind that anyone will fly with 2 bikes and assorted junk to wisconsin in january to compete in a 30 minute race.
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    That first Natz in Providence maybe 9 years ago was the beginning of the end atmo. The volume of people permitted to compete in each category (and many categories are beyond stupid) dumbs down the event.
    It seems that all the guys who were beating me in cross had a full head of hair. Maybe I can lobby USA Cycling to have a bald-head category.
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveP View Post
    because the reality of cris in the usa is it is a sport of masters, 3s and beginners.


    it does boggle my mind that anyone will fly with 2 bikes and assorted junk to wisconsin in january to compete in a 30 minute race.
    Dude you are making my head hurt atmo.

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by sk_tle View Post
    What's the point of having nats for non elite racers (I include juniors and u23 as elite racers as they are eligible for worlds too) ? Those age group national championships are a complete non-sense. Isn't it like being the national champion of those who sucks ?

    Besides, nats are on january 13. It's hardly a long time after the last cross races of late december.
    This, and there's a relatively small sample. There are probably hundreds of master's participants who are too sane to travel to race such a race. People with families, work commitments, and general life for those of us who are non-professionals.
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    The fingerprinting is humorous; even the elite guys are just delaying the onset of adulthood by playing dress up as a pro bike racer.

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by suspectdevice View Post
    The CX season is tooo damnnnn loooong.
    Agreed--I've seen well attended amateur events happening in late August. Then by the time the real cross weather is here for good in the 2nd half of November forward, participation is starting to wane just when everything is getting good. But maybe that's because by that time the cat 4/5 triathletes who are doing the races as "off season training" have hung up their CX rigs.

    As far as driving 2-3 hours for a 30 minute race, I think the reason CX is booming is because it's about more than just the race. It's about hanging out with your buds, watching other categories and teammates race. It's an event for many, not just a race. If it was just about lining up in the 5th row and getting 40th in cat4/5 race with 100 people in it, you would be nuts to do that. To me, that is the beautiful thing about the CX scene in America right now, at least where I live.
     

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    Default Re: "Nationals in January Sucks"

    Quote Originally Posted by BSUdude View Post
    As far as driving 2-3 hours for a 30 minute race, I think the reason CX is booming is because it's about more than just the race. It's about hanging out with your buds, watching other categories and teammates race. It's an event for many, not just a race. If it was just about lining up in the 5th row and getting 40th in cat4/5 race with 100 people in it, you would be nuts to do that. To me, that is the beautiful thing about the CX scene in America right now, at least where I live.
    I don't know, I started racing without knowing anyone else who races, and generally just go show up with my girlfriend. I like the idea of getting to know people eventually, but I really like the racing on its own. I enjoy riding my bikes in dirt and mud, I enjoy being competitive with people, and I enjoy working to get faster.
    --------------------
    another jaunt
    REBAR

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