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Cat.5 to Cat.1?(21 posts)

Cat.5 to Cat.1?seyboro
Dec 29, 2003 7:33 PM
Is it possible to go from Cat.5 racer to Cat.1 in one year's time? I'd love to call bullsh*t on a kid who bragged a little much on a ride the other day. Thoughts?
I doubt it.the bull
Dec 29, 2003 7:45 PM
Getting to cat 3 is more likely, but still hard.
You have to fill out forms and there is paperwork.
Why worry?
Sit back and let the bullsh!t flow.
He is just a kid.
Self-humbling is the best kind!
re: Cat.5 to Cat.1?torquecal
Dec 29, 2003 8:05 PM
technically possible i guess... has he got 100 mass start races he/she can start?
One of the Navigators did itspookyload
Dec 29, 2003 8:23 PM
He went from first season to pro.
I could do it if I had the time....Matno
Dec 29, 2003 8:44 PM
Ha! Right. In my current shape, I'd be lucky to get INTO Cat 5!

Seriously though, the official racing requirements alone would take too long, realistically speaking.

As for ability, who knows what people are capable of? I'm sure I'm not the only one who wonders what I could be like if I trained 6 hours a day like some of the pros. After all, I have the same height, weight, and general build as Lance Armstrong. (I'm even from Texas). I have a brother-in-law who could probably do it. In his first mountain bike race, he beat a pro racer by almost 2 minutes (1:52 in a 20 mile race). In his second race a week later, he raced the category he was "supposed" to be in and beat second place by 8 minutes (in a 10 mile race). But then, he has always done a lot of riding, and he's somewhat of a freak of nature. He just hasn't ever done much official racing and probably never will. Too bad.
I could do it if I had the time....Woof the dog
Dec 30, 2003 9:46 AM
A lot of mtn bike pros get their ass kicked in a cat 3 race.

That sounds a little far fetched, but part of it ishuez
Dec 30, 2003 2:23 PM
because the fittest guy only sometimes wins a road race. In cross or mtb racing the strongest almost always wins.

In my area, a mtb pro would definitley not get his ass kicked in a cat 3 race. Especially if the race has climbs. It would be quite the opposite.

In Kansas, maybe I could see it happening.....
Discussed this on the Racing board last month...biknben
Dec 29, 2003 8:47 PM
Check it out:
Yes, it's possibleThe Human G-Nome
Dec 29, 2003 10:15 PM
If you were a world-class runner who dabbled in cycling but never raced, the chances are actually quite good. Still, that's a rare bird.
It's possible, but not at all easy....russw19
Dec 29, 2003 10:20 PM
All you would need to do is stomp some butt in a few races and get a sympathetic USCF official to hand over the upgrade to Cat 3. From there it gets tough. Going from a 5 to a 3 is simple. Just show the talent and ask the right person for the upgrade. If you raced as a Junior and were assigned a 5 your first Senior season, you may not even have to race a single 5 race to move to a 3. Just ask someone in the USCF who knew you when you were a Junior. If you showed enough talent, they could fast track you to the 3 races. From there you would need merit to move up.

If you won your first 3 or 4 Cat 3 races, you could ask for the upgrade to a 2 and you may get it. From there it's just about the points. Place well enough in a few early season races and get one really big win and you are now racing as a Cat 1. It's possible, and it happens, but not that much. And when it does happen, it is most likely because some USCF official took a liking to the person and recognized talent. It would be rare for someone to do it just by getting the points without someone helping them out by moving them up faster than normal.

I went from a Cat 4 (Cat 5 wasn't around yet my first year of Senior racing... it came about 2 years later) to a Cat 2 in less than 6 months, but it was only because I knew the right people. I did 4 races as a 4 and won 3 of them and was 6th in the other. I raced for 5 months as a 3 and did 3 races a week and got about 60% of the points I needed to move up so I asked for the upgrade and got it. That turned out to be a bad move for me as I only won 2 more races in the next 2 years.

A lot of this would have to do with 2 major factors that I can see... having sympathetic officials to fast track him, and being in an area where the fields are small enough that they want to move riders up as fast as they can. For example if they have big Cat 3 fields but small 2 and 1 fields, they may want to move people along that they think could do OK in the higher fields.

I would hesitate to call b.s., but go ride with the kid and see if he's all that. Let his legs speak for him.

Just my thoughts on this...

I think Greg Ruckman almost did itgeorge_da_trog
Dec 29, 2003 11:18 PM
In 2001,

bit more about Greg: "Greg Ruckman is a member of the Hancock/MOTO/Cycle Couriers. Our team is based in San Francisco, CA. We are mostly former messengers and dispatchers. (see


"Greg began racing bikes this year on Jan 1st at the San Bruno hill climb, where he had to move up from the back of over 100 riders, as he was a cat 5, to finish 4th, after dragging the winners teamate and another rider to the line. He was an Olympic rower in Sydney, and began racing bicycles this year to see where it would lead him. He moved up to a cat 2 by May, after winning the Tour of Willamete in his 3rd cat 3 race, and has based his season on the Mt Evans and Mt Washington hill climbs."

Did he end the year with a contract?

Yes, this guy did it......african
Dec 30, 2003 6:39 AM
And beyond..............................nmMR_GRUMPY
Dec 30, 2003 7:01 AM
I think he did it in *one race*! nmDougSloan
Dec 30, 2003 8:08 AM
I knew it was gonna be that pic w/o even looking (nm)OffTheBack
Dec 30, 2003 8:58 AM
It was either Arrontony or Skinsuit Guy...biknben
Dec 30, 2003 9:34 AM
Coming from African, I figured it would be one or the other.
What do the different catagories mean??lendog
Dec 30, 2003 10:54 AM
What do the different catagories mean??DougSloan
Dec 30, 2003 2:40 PM
For men, you start at a 5, then move up with experience and results; 1 is the highest before pro. Check the USA Cycling website for more info.

thanks for responding (nm)lendog
Dec 31, 2003 7:39 AM
Yes, this guy did it......rogue_CT1
Dec 30, 2003 11:57 AM
LMFAO!!!! Geez African you forgot to mention he did it in only 4 months! 3 miles in 5 minutes has to be a world record. Thank God for Scattante.
This Guy did it in 7 weeks!853
Dec 30, 2003 9:04 AM
Jamie Paolinetti - from the movie "The Hard Road"

"Now a master strategist with the motor to bring his plans to fruition, Jamie's introduction to cycling was by chance: "a freak thing." He played baseball in college, but had stopped, and was in his last year of school, looking for something to do just to stay active. He was surfing a lot at the time when a friend of his, who was a Cat 2 racer, came to him "one day when the waves had been flat a long time and said ‘Come with me for a bike ride.' "

Jamie's fit with cycling was instant and perfect. Physically, mentally and analytically engaging, it satisfied "everything I thought I was about at the time." An immediate string of strong results and victories moved him quickly through the categories, and within a few months, he found himself on the start line of the district championships, encompassing all of the west coast. Out of a field of approximately 300, Jamie took 15th, which, along with his previous strong showings, qualified him as a Cat 2 racer within an amazing seven weeks of hitting the local circuit. His first start as a Cat 2 was at a race in La Jolla, California, where he found himself riding with the big boys: "Alexei Grewal, Davis Phinney, and Jeff Pierce were there; superstars who had just come back from the Tour de France. It was a huge step up, and even though I had been on a bike just seven weeks, I was hanging in there! So, I kind of figured out that I had something. Some knack you need to do the sport."

Jamie finished his first season with good results, got a spot on the best amateur team in Southern California at that time, and did a full year as a Cat 1. During that year, he and his team did over 110 races and by the end of the season he had an offer from a small pro team, and went on to ride the national circuit and a few international races for the first time."