Racers opinions please !

pixychick

JORBA: Ringwood
JORBA.ORG
Hi Ladies and Girls,

I would like to thank all the women for coming out to race in the Campmor H2H Series this past year. There were many outstanding performances from women as well as first time performances. I have not crunched all the numbers yet, but I think the record was set at LM this year with 39 women coming out to race. Awesome!

Each year, I analize the Series results for women, and try to make the necessary adjustments to try to keep this series current with the trends in women's cycling.

What I am lookinfg for is your opinion on women's racing categories in the Campmor H2H series. Do you like age break downs? Want less age breakdowns for increased competition? Different age breakdowns? Etc.

If I have not already spoken with you about this, please feel free to post or PM me your thoughts, and please be specific with reasons.

Also any comments on Women's events pre-rides etc. Planning for next year is already under way.

Thanks and looking forward to next year,
Ellen

Campmor H2H Series
 

PlayAllDay

Member
HI Ellen,
The age breakdown as is seems fine to me. Most of the races there were at least 5or 6 girls in both Sport age groups, which was decent. I think combining to one group wouldn't be a good idea because it would only intimidate competitors. Just my thoughts... :)
 

Eileen

Active Member
The age groups were fine with me. There were usually about 7 of us in my age group. It's hard to predict how many people are going to show because there were 11 in my age group at LewMo but only 3 of us at Ringwood.

One of the races I looked at, I was the youngest one in my age group. I think that someone in the 35+ might not want to race the 20 year olds (even though they're faster than us). I agree with PlayAllDay that an open category might seem intimidating to new comers.

If the women race was to be an open category, how would it compare to a typical guy's race in the amount of people? (just figured I'd throw this out there)

The women rides were awesome, I plan to attend as many as possible!!

Thanks for a great season, I can't wait for next year :D
 
J

JerseyGirl

Guest
The age grouping always worked for me. Did the NJ series in 02 and 03 and allamuchy for the past 6 years or so. Never bothered me that in some races there were 14 riders in my age group and other races 3 riders. I never felt like a medal was handed to me even if I took first out of one :). During awards I felt like the women made more of a presence when we had the comparable groupings to that of the men. Yes our field would be larger for the races but that may be the only advantage. As far as a competitive drive, either you are in it to race or you are doing it just to be a part. Your mind and drive is made up on the start line regardless of the number of competitors. In a smaller field I even pushed myself simply to beat my old times. In a nut shell- I say keep the age grouping the way it was. ROCK ON LADIES
 
S

Shar0se

Guest
Hi Ellen,

I am glad you asked about this!! I would vote for more age groups.

The reason being is that the 30-39 year old age group is always the most competative in endurance sports. It doesn't seem fair to me that a 34 year old be compared to a 20 year old or that a 35 year old be compared to a 48 year old, as they currently are. I would strongly urge for <19, 20-29, 30-39 and then 40+ or even a 40-49 if the numbers sustain it.
This would allow for more woman to have success. More success = happier woman = more woman.

A little sidebar: On another note I feel I can speak for myself and a number of women I have spoken to at races that HATE being put as one big group at the start. I realize that a mens sport category may bring 35 guys out and all the women combined in a beginner field may be only 15. So what?! If we are going to encourage more woman to come out, feel respected and safe we should race in the correct age categories off the start all the time. What is another 2 minutes on the start time!?

There are many arguments that could go various ways however, the bottom line is that mountain biking is a male dominated sport. In order to foster the growth of women within the sport things need to be present within in the fabrics of the issue. Having matching age categories with the men and separate start times begins to set the tone at a fundamental level.

I would love to hear other ways that we can help foster the growth of the sport among females!! Ellen- you rock! Thanks for doing all this! You are probably one of the best examples of women bikers that I can think of who are working diligently on this issue!!

And now I will step down off my soapbox.....:)
 

Eileen

Active Member
A little sidebar: On another note I feel I can speak for myself and a number of women I have spoken to at races that HATE being put as one big group at the start. I realize that a mens sport category may bring 35 guys out and all the women combined in a beginner field may be only 15. So what?! If we are going to encourage more woman to come out, feel respected and safe we should race in the correct age categories off the start all the time. What is another 2 minutes on the start time!?

I can't agree with this more!!!

At the Wayway race they started all of the women with the junior guys and the 50+ guys. The beginning of the course is pretty wide but it was still chaotic to say the least.

At Stewart, the race director gave us the option to start together or split. We chose to start according to our age groups. I liked the split start much better because it wasn't as crazy and I could actually see who I was racing with.

Each race director does it differently, but it's something that I think most women would like.
 

pixychick

JORBA: Ringwood
JORBA.ORG
I just wanted you all to know that when you go to the line with the other women, you can always check their number plates to see if they are in your class. All our races use the same sequences. If you can not figure out the number breaks, you can ask at registration. You can also just introduce yourself to everyone at the start too. Most women at races are pretty friendly and will tell you their ages. :)
 

xc62701

Well-Known Member
The women should be separated by age groups for the start of the race. Personally my group always starts off with probably 6-15 riders and I'm very happy that we don't get lumped in with the 30-39 guys which would be madness. It seems very unfair to lump all the ladies together when they could be run separately. Of course if there are VERY small numbers I could see putting a couple of categories together. But just so it's easier for scorekeeping doesn't make sense. Make it easier on the riders who are competing. It's more of a real race with your competitors that way.
 
S

Shar0se

Guest
The women should be separated by age groups for the start of the race. Personally my group always starts off with probably 6-15 riders and I'm very happy that we don't get lumped in with the 30-39 guys which would be madness. It seems very unfair to lump all the ladies together when they could be run separately. Of course if there are VERY small numbers I could see putting a couple of categories together. But just so it's easier for scorekeeping doesn't make sense. Make it easier on the riders who are competing. It's more of a real race with your competitors that way.
any thoughts on the age groups for the categories?
 

PlayAllDay

Member
In Sport races, the 12-34 group starts together with the 35 plus group and I'm totally fine with that. And they usually ask us if it's ok if we all go together. There aren't that many Sport women racers so combining us at the start didn't bother me at all. But, If Sport women start to get large groups next year, then it could change so that they're spread out.
Also, I still think the age groups are fine as is and should only change if we get a lot more women. Up to 34 and 35 plus works for Sport because we usually only have 5-6 in each group max, if that. We could maybe have an under 19 group too. Just my 2 cents.
But, I'm totally fine with whatever is decided. I just want to ride. ;)
 

pixychick

JORBA: Ringwood
JORBA.ORG
Thanks women for all your thoughts. This really helps, as what works for some classes may not always work for others. So hearing from racers in beginner and sport is always a help for me, when asked what women like. If it were up to me, I would always just vote for more chocolate!

Good luck to you, and ... next year will be awesome fun!! :)
 

pixychick

JORBA: Ringwood
JORBA.ORG
Good news. .... The Campmor H2H series will continue to have age groups for all women's categories like last year. The few changes will be the addition of a pro class and combining the sport ss and the expert ss into one women's ss class that will do sport distance. Also, All women should have separate starts from men.

Now, about all girl pre-ride's .... if there were a choice, day before or weekend before ??

Ellen
 

Eileen

Active Member
It doesn't really matter to me - I'll be there either way.

If it was the weekend before, we could stay out longer and not have to worry about tiring ourselves out for race day.
 
S

Shar0se

Guest
Good news. .... The Campmor H2H series will continue to have age groups for all women's categories like last year. The few changes will be the addition of a pro class and combining the sport ss and the expert ss into one women's ss class that will do sport distance. Also, All women should have separate starts from men.

Now, about all girl pre-ride's .... if there were a choice, day before or weekend before ??

Ellen
Either way works for me!
 
F

FallGirl1430

Guest
Hi Ladies and Girls,

I would like to thank all the women for coming out to race in the Campmor H2H Series this past year. There were many outstanding performances from women as well as first time performances. I have not crunched all the numbers yet, but I think the record was set at LM this year with 39 women coming out to race. Awesome!

Each year, I analize the Series results for women, and try to make the necessary adjustments to try to keep this series current with the trends in women's cycling.

What I am lookinfg for is your opinion on women's racing categories in the Campmor H2H series. Do you like age break downs? Want less age breakdowns for increased competition? Different age breakdowns? Etc.

If I have not already spoken with you about this, please feel free to post or PM me your thoughts, and please be specific with reasons.

Also any comments on Women's events pre-rides etc. Planning for next year is already under way.

Thanks and looking forward to next year,
Ellen

Campmor H2H Series
Im new to this site, the 07 H2H series was a blast. I raced women's begginer 35+ class finishing 3rd for the series. For 08 Im moving up to Sport 35+, I just turned ...gulp, 50. I didn't mind riding with the younger women, it made me try that much harder. I think having a 45+ class would be good, but how many would there be in that class? Hardly enough I believe. I did hear a few of my fellow racers speaking in terms of their ages too. I also like when the race director split up the age groups. At the Lewis Morris race, they let all beginner woman age groups start at the same time with the Jrs. going off first and so on. When we came to that little creek crossing it was a traffic jam and I had to play catch up the entire race. Yes it made me try harder but a few of my main comp didn't get caught up in the mess. Either way like the rest of you, racing is so much fun and whatever the classes are Im in.
Christina ....
ps. Thank you Pixychic for posting your concerns
 

pixychick

JORBA: Ringwood
JORBA.ORG
Hi Christina and welcome to mountain bike racing. Thanks for your interest as well. I am looking forward to seeing you out there racing, and I am real excited to have another 50 year old racing as well. :) Keep up the good work.
 

Mare45

Well-Known Member
I am not saying I'd be able to attend all the prerides, but just voicing my opinion... I prefer to preride a week before. The day before a race I like to ride somewhere predictable and local so I don't tire myself out too much. I cannot believe race season will be here before we know it!
 
N

Neen

Guest
I vote for pre-rides the week before, rather than the day before. Allows time to heal if I do something stupid on unfamiliar terrain! :p
 
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