After the great turnout at last year's Tuesday & Friday Night Chico Airport Criterium Bicycle Racing Series, we're going to do them again for 2012! For those curious, the definition of a "Criterium" bicycle race is here:
This 1st Official Airport Criterium Event for the 2012 Chico Airport Criterium Series starts up Tuesday, April 10th, 2012 and ends on Friday, October 12th, 2012. Registration normally starts at 5:30pm - with the Category A & B events starting PROMPTLY at 6:00pm......and the Category C & Junior event starting at 7:00pm. The Awards Ceremony at the end of the Series will be held in October 2012 at a location to be determined. This will be a pretty long season of Criteriums, but will most definitely help to improve your riding, speed, skill, strength, stamina and smarts out there on the bicycle. They're a GREAT workout, and lots of fun - so come on out and give 'em a shot!
RAIN AND WET PAVEMENT WILL ALWAYS CANCEL THE CRITERIUMS!
How does it work?
1. There will be 2 distinct racing times this year at each event, as we had last year - 6pm & 7pm. 6:00pm is the Category "A"(Advanced riders) & Category "B"(Intermediate riders) races..........while 7:00pm is Category "C"(Novice Riders) & Junior races(normally under the age of 16 - last year, we had kids ranging in age from 3 to 15 - and at times during the summer months, the kids outnumbered the Cat. A & B groups!). Mentors/adults may also ride in the Junior races in order to help teach them....and keep an eye on these young up & coming riders/racers. All racers MUST sign in at the registration table prior to the start of their event.
2. We will be using 2 primary courses for the Criteriums this year, our standard Tuesday/Friday Night Criterium course starting/finishing at Convair Avenue(our normal course) & the Long-Course, starting and finishing on Marauder Avenue on the north end of the Chico Airport.
In addition to the normal Tuesday & Friday night Criterium races, we will be holding Criteriums on the weekends this year. In addition, there MIGHT be Criteriums held on other or new courses in the area. AND - It's almost a certainty that we will be holding Women's Only & Juniors Only Criteriums this year at some point........in addition to a Night-time Criterium. Many of the Criteriums will be part of this year's Omniums as well(Rodneyums, Nutcracker, Dog Days, Rumpstomper, Knockoffer, Bilirubin and others). An "Omnium" is just a stage race using points rather than time - and you do not have to complete one stage in order to do the next stage. You garner points for each stage depending upon how you did in the stage.......and, in the R.A.C.E. Omniums, the MOST points wins(many Omniums reverse this and have the least amount of points winning).
3. NEW THIS YEAR - The Criterium course will normally be set up at 5:30pm on Tuesdays & Fridays for warm-ups. However, at some of the Criteriums, we will have some mentoring sessions out there for the Criterium riders from 5:30pm to 6:00pm with Criterium-experienced riders. If you would like to be a mentor, please e-mail me at ChicoCyclist@gmail.com
4. ALL riders must sign-in - There will be a small table on the sidewalk at the Start/Finish Line of the Criteriums - just sign in at the table and you are good-to-go! No entry fee and no racing license required......although donations & sponsorships are always extremely appreciated! Sign-ins start at 5:30pm - the racing action starts at 6:00pm for As & Bs, and 7:00pm for Category "C" and Juniors. Category "A"(Advanced riders) normally starts....then, 30 seconds later, the Category "B"(Intermediate riders) race starts up. We usually end Category A & B events by 6:55pm.....and end the Junior Races by 7:30pm. RAIN AND WET PAVEMENT WILL ALWAYS CANCEL THE CRITERIUMS! In addition, in 2008, we had some tremendous smoke from the Humboldt Fire in this area......which would also cancel the Criteriums due to hazardous air quality. And, finally, the Race Director plans to go on vacation this summer at some point, so no Criteriums will be held during vacation days(sorry). And, obviously, if I'm sick I probably will not be able to be there either(will try not to get sick!).
5. The Category "B" races normally go for 40 to 45 minutes PLUS 3 laps.........while the Category "A" races normally go for 45 to 50 minutes PLUS 3 laps. In the case of the two Categories being combined(for instance, if only a few riders show up, and we combine the A & B fields), the race will be 45 minutes PLUS 3 laps. Category "C" & Junior Races usually go for 20 to 25 Minutes PLUS 3 laps, if daylight allows. There can be anywhere from 1 to 15+ Primes in the Airport Criteriums......just depends on the mood of the Dictator.....er......I mean, Director. ;) The usual Cowbell will be utilized to announce Primes - along with me screaming at you, as usual. :)
---So, after 40 minutes in the Category "B" race, I will call out "3 laps to go!", then 2, then 1 to go. Category B Riders - Remember, once you finish your race, you MUST vacate the course immediately - the Category A Riders are still out there racing for another 5 minutes, and we must have the course cleared. Any rider NOT clearing the course in a timely manner will be DQ'd. Also, no warming up/cooling down on the course while a race is in progress. We want y'all to have a safe and fun time out there, so please do your best to be careful, aware and looking out for your fellow riders!
AND - New this year - We will have either lap cards out there.......or a Dry Erase Board with the Lap Numbers on them........in case you can't hear me screaming at you! I will try to give you the 3-to-go mark, and so on.
AND, finally - Category "A" & "B" riders MUST clear the course entirely for the Junior & Category "C" riders - please reciprocate the respect they have for y'all out there!!
6. NEW THIS YEAR - Any rider who is very late to the Criteriums, or any rider who has been lapped, will NOT be eligible for Primes this year. Sorry - I had too many complaints last year about this issue, so we'll be racing a little bit more like a "real" race this year. So, just try your best! If you get dropped, no worries - just soft-pedal and keep the legs loose - when the pack comes back around, just latch back on! You will still be counted in the finish - you will never be pulled for just racing - you just won't be eligible for Primes at that point. BUT - as usual in all R.A.C.E. events, there could be exceptions to this rule(for instance, chase packs could have chase pack Primes offered, etc.).
7. Helmets are absolutely MANDATORY! So, please....please.....wear your helmet! No helmet = no race.
8. All are welcome - you don't have to do the Series - just come on out and give this Criterium training/riding a shot! It's amazing what kind of workout you can get in during a 45 to 60 minute practice event. Or just come out to watch - we had lots of spectators out there last year. This will be our 5th year out there(not counting the 80s & 90s Series!), and it has been an absolute blast! Hope you can join us!
9. Points are used to calculate the Overall Standings in the 2012 Chico Criterium Series. The point breakdown for each Criterium has changed this year, and will be as follows:
20-16-14-12-10-8-6-4-2-1-1-1, with an additional 3 points being given to each participant at each event(must race though).
So, 20 points goes to the winner, 16 points goes to 2nd place, 14 points goes to 3rd place and so on.........in addition to 3 more points for finishing the event. PLUS Prime Points count towards the 2012 Series. AND - some prizes will be given out this year as Primes.
The rider with the MOST points at the end of the Series in their respective Category wins the Overall Series Title - and the 2012 Chico Criterium Series Championship Trophy, plus whatever goodies we can give you.
Also, Prime Points will be given out during each of the Crits - these are just lap prizes......but in this case, the prizes are points. We will also have some product Primes out there this year as well! Primes are normally worth anywhere between 1 point and 6 points.......and everything in between. There may also be Multi-PLACE Primes: If I call a 3-Place Prime, the Prime Points go 3-deep........say, 6 points for 1st, 4 points for 2nd and 2 points for 3rd. If I call a 6-point 3-Place Prime, the previous example may be the formula used(6 for 1st, 4 for 2nd, 2 for 3rd).
ALSO - Some races will be classified as DOUBLE-POINT races(in particular, some Friday night races), and a couple of races may be TRIPLE-POINT races(especially Omnium Criteriums).......which means, the finishing points(and Prime Points) are doubled and tripled, respectively.
AND - due to the new format of the R.A.C.E. events, there will be quite a bit more Primes called during Criteriums this year compared to last year........just wanted to warn ya! ;)
NEW this year too - Riders in Solo or small-group breakaways will be awarded accordingly, in order to promote aggressive racing. So, if a rider - or riders - takes off on a breakaway and stay out there for a good portion of the race, you can be sure that I will make it worth it for that rider(s) via Prime Points/Aggressive Racing Points awarded. Aggressive Racing Points are an additional award given during the race for aggressive type racing(no no - not knocking others off their bikes and wrestling, etc.!) - basically, launching attacks to try to breakaway, or coordinating launches - or tremendous chases - during the race.
10. We may use different formats for some of the Criteriums......Devil Takes The Hindmost(aka - Miss And Out) & Points Races are likely events to be used off and on during the season:
In addition, aspects of EACH of these track racing events MAY appear at any Criterium(at some point during the race, the Devil may make an appearance......same with Points Races). You can be certain that there will be AT LEAST two events that have Prime Points every single lap this coming year. ;) With regard to the Devil Takes The Hindmost races - the race will go for 30-35 minutes BEFORE riders will start being pulled....that way, you can race a bunch first....then sprint to stay in the race each lap. I know.....I'm really evil......sorry. ;)
11. Free lap rule is in effect - within reason. So, if you have a flat tire or mechanical, you'll have one or two laps to get it fixed and back in the race without penalty.......within reason. Bringing extra wheels for the "Pit Area" is quite acceptable, and encouraged. The Pit Area is at the Start/Finish location of the Crit. Remember though - I will be viewing the Free Lap rule as I would as an USA Cycling Official....somewhat.
12. Please, no inter-mixing of groups during the Category "A" & Category "B" races.......in other words, just race in your own Category and don't use the other Category to help your placing, pacing, racing, etc. Also, PLEASE listen carefully to pre-race instructions at the Start Line - the instructions could change from week-to-week.....and I want you to be aware of any course hazards or rule changes before your race.
13. Last year, we had just two categories during the 6pm races - Category "A"(Advanced riders) and Category "B"(Intermediate riders) - and two categories for the 7pm races - Category "C"(Novice riders) & Juniors(riders under the age of 16). However, the Series itself has even more Trophy Categories, including:
Juniors Category(Riders under the age of 16)
Masters 50+ Category in the "B" race
***In addition - The rider who has the MOST points in the entire Series at the end will receive the "Grand Champion's" Plaque as well.
These are the Categories which all qualify for a Series Championship Trophy. If nobody - or very few folks are in one category - we may eliminate it and add an additional category where the numbers allow it. If weeks go by and nobody enters a particular category, it's a certainty that it will be eliminated as a category. On the other hand, if suddenly we have a slew of 8-year olds racing the Junior Races, you can be fairly certain that an "8-year-old Junior Category" will be added!
As usual, sandbaggers are strongly discouraged (A Sandbagger would be a Category "A" rider entering a Category "B" event). Results for each of the Criterium events will be processed within 24 hours after completion, as well as the updated Overall Standings in the 2012 Chico Airport Criterium Series - and can be found on www.RaceChico.com
, as well as posted on Facebook, Twitter and www.ChicoBike.com
. Video and photos of the event are usually posted at www.Flickr.com & www.YouTube.com within 24 hours after the completion of the event. In addition, there will be a 24-hour protest period to verify and update the results, if needed.
NOTE - The Race Director reserves the right to upgrade you at any time if he sees fit - must be very obvious though(for instance, if you are just demolishing the field in the Category "B" races, it's a pretty sure bet that I will re-classify you as an "A" Category rider this year).
14. Although donations to put on these events are always very very appreciated and accepted, this Series is FREE - so come on out and take advantage of some, or all, of these Criteriums in 2012! Also, ANY and ALL sponsorships for these events are extremely appreciated and welcome - so, if you'd like to sponsor the R.A.C.E. events, just let me know! We accept pretty much any types of Primes - from services to goods, to whatever you may have to offer......a link to your business website/e-mail will go on the R.A.C.E. e-mails, Facebook, Twitter, www.RaceChico.com, www.ChicoBike.com and so forth.
15. The Race Director reserves the right to disqualify (DQ) any rider for unsafe riding or unsportsmanlike conduct at ANY time. Also, PLEASE - NO colorful language will be used out there - especially with the little kids around watching the races(we have kids out there ranging in age from 2 to 12 watching the racing action - including my 7-year-old Co-R.A.C.E. Director)! ANY rider breaking these rules can be subject to Disqualification from - not only the race - but from the entire Series. So, please - just do what ya always do and just be cool.
16. Finally, remember - these Criterium events are essentially for practice and exercise - we have fun out there and get a great little workout in, and we get to work on some quality cycling skills. But, overall, they're no big whoop....no World Championship/Olympic medals or million dollar contracts on the line. So, with that in mind, just treat 'em as such - a good training event to try some new things, gain some good fitness, get some experience.....and maybe even get into a "real" sanctioned Criterium at some point in time(they are held ALL over northern California every season). Or not. Just have fun with it! We'll have trophies and hopefully some prizes for the Series winners & placers - and definitely loads of fun....and pain and suffering. ;) But remember - it's all in good fun!
This Series is FREE - so come on out and take advantage of some, or all, of these Criteriums in 2012! Although donations are always extremely appreciated, they are NEVER necessary to enter these events - I just want y'all out there testing yourselves on your bicycles and having a good time! Also, this Series is not associated with any cycling clubs, so you don't have to be a member of any club to take part in any of these events.(Sorry - get asked that question all the time).
Hope to see you out there!
R.A.C.E. - Rodney's Amateur Cycling Events
~Grassroots Bicycle Racing Events~