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Racing in Nice, France(7 posts)

Racing in Nice, FranceB123
Jan 5, 2003 3:02 PM
I'll be staying with family in Nice this June/July and I'd like to try some road racing. I have a UCI elite/espoir license, it would be great to race for a team with others my age and strength.

Any ideas for teams/people to contact in Nice? Racing calendar? Group rides?

Thanks,

B
re: Racing in Nice, FranceCARBON110
Jan 6, 2003 6:01 AM
It doesnt work that way over on the continent. veryone races together... there arent realy different cats but there sort of are. Everyone races at the same time on the same start line.... there are teams butthe race field is usually so big and the amature pros so good you will just want some company to finish the race with who speaks a common language. Its harder, more nasty, longer, and thecurses much more brutal sometimes... but it will be a blast! Have a great time
Schedule?B123
Jan 7, 2003 8:21 AM
Is there a place where I can find the start times, dates, and locations of the races in that area?

Thanks
answers....philippec
Jan 7, 2003 9:36 AM
First off, there are three racing federations in France: The FFC (somewhat equal to the USCF), UFOLEP (less competitive) and the FSGT. You'll probably want to race in one of the first two.

Secondly, there are categories in all racing federations. The FFC has 4 main categories: Départementale (roughly cat 4), Régionale (roughly cat 2-3), Nationale (cat 1-2) and elite/pro. They also run age-based categories (cadets, minimes, juniors, espoirs, etc). UFOLEP and FSGT also have categories. It is not true that riders of all levels line up for the same start (as posted earlier) -- perhaps they were referring to mass-start "cyclosportives" which are more like competitive centuries than true races.

The races are pretty tough events and are more difficult than your typical US race in any given category -- the riders are there to put the hurt on and are usually extremely experienced bike handlers and tacticians -- you can learn alot from just participating... herein lies the rub though, you cannot just walk up and register yourself for a race (at least not in the FFC).

There are usually several races to choose from every week-end but it is difficult to enter them w/out some sort of official affiliation -- and this is especialy true for the FFC races. Your best bet is to get in touch with a local club and see if they would not be willing to tack you on to their race squad.

For more info, you can go to the websites of the federations: www.ffc.fr (seems to be down right now)and www.ufolep.org.

hope this helps,

Philippe
Thanks!B123
Jan 7, 2003 3:59 PM
re: Racing in Nice, Franceeurochien
Jan 7, 2003 12:21 PM
Just as Philippe said, three main federations sanction races and the FFC is the most elite-oriented. There are several trade teams but also regional teams. I don't know what it would take for you as a US rider to race with the Provence-Côte d'Azur (covering the region of Nice) team but that might be worth a shot. Marseille also has a great dynamic team called VC (Velo club) La Pomme. There is a lot of interest for juniors in French cycling so I'm sure you'll find some organization to work with. The terrain around Nice is very tough, lots of elevation gain and drop on narrow, twisty roads. You'll have a blast. Check out "La France Cycliste", the FFC monthly paper when you're over there, sold in all newsstands, lots of info (of course all in French...). Note that the whole region is overcrowded in the summer and most races that you'll do with even a local team may be far from Nice itself (for reference, the Tour de France never goes east of Marseille along the coast).
l'eurochien
re: Racing in Nice, FranceB123
Jan 7, 2003 4:01 PM
Its going to be a balancing act...racing and relaxing on the beach!

Thanks