2012 Rule Changes; 30-34 age group removed from Masters Nationals


The meeting of USA Cycling’s various Sport Committees last month resulted in several rule changes for the 2012 season.
The most significant change for 2012 is the removal of the 30-34 age category from USA Cycling Masters Road and Masters Track National Championships.
The age category’s declining participation at road and track national championship events was cited as the main reason for the rule change.
USA Cycling’s masters national championship events have very full race schedules. Creating time slots for fields with low participation has resulted in inconvenient scheduling for the other participants. By eliminating the men’s and women’s 30-34 age categories, racers and event staff will benefit from a more manageable race schedule.
“After careful vetting and approval by both internal staff and the USA Cycling road and track sport committees, the chronically low level of participation at masters road and track national championships led us to remove the category completely,” explained USA Cycling’s Managing Director of National Events, Micah Rice.  “For example, this year at Masters Road Nationals, we had 25 men show up for the 30-34 criterium while our 40-44 and 45-49 fields had over 100 riders each. For the women’s 30-34 race, there were ten riders. The numbers at Masters Track Nationals were even smaller.”
The removal of the age category resulted in the age groupings being modified for the team pursuit and team sprint events.
In addition to the removal of the youngest masters category, USA Cycling members will notice several additional changes in the 2012 rule book. These changes can be summarized as follows:
·         Elimination of tandem track sprint national championships: There will no longer be a USA Cycling Tandem Track Sprint National Championship. In order to maintain the number of track national championship events, the International Omnium Track National Championships will now be a standalone event.
·         Youth licenses for 6-9 year-olds: USA Cycling will begin selling annual licenses for the youth class in 2012. This class is defined as riders with an actual age of six through a racing age of nine.  Additionally, a “youth race” is being defined as a race held on a closed course with a circuit of five kilometers or less.
·         Young juniors must use mass start legal bikes in all races, including time trials: Beginning in 2012,youth and junior riders in the 12 and under age categories will be restricted to mass start legal bikes in all races. These legal bikes cannot have aero bars. The wheels must have no covers and must have at least 16 spokes. These rules will apply to the 13-14 age group in 2013.
The complete, updated 2012 USA Cycling rule book will be available online at www.usacycling.org/rulebook soon. USA Cycling officials will begin receiving the rule book in the mail in December of 2011.
With questions about any of these changes, please contact USA Cycling Technical Director, Shawn Farrell at sfarrell@usacycling.org.

This Article Published November 30, 2011 For more information contact: