USA Cycling is the primary
national governing body for bicycle road racing in the United States. Although the United States Cycling Federation is a component of USA Cycling, you will generally see the area of bicycle racing for which the USCF is responsible referred to as USA Cycling Road/Track/Cyclocross.
The USCF, the
Off-Road Bicycle Association (NORBA), the
National Collegiate Cycling
Association (NCCA) and
together comprise USA Cycling.
Presently, the NCCA is a program under the USCF. USa Cycling is a member of the
U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC), and is an affiliated member of the
International Cycling Union
(UCI), which governs most international cycling competitions. Most bicycle
road racing clubs and cyclists in the U.S. belong the the USCF, which holds
annual National Championships competitions, maintains
competitions, certifies officials and coaches, conducts training workshops,
etc. Most competitive road cyclists hold
Racing Licenses, which indicate to which class and category they belong. Bicycle races
are usually divided up according to these age-based classes and
experience-based categories, and riders strive to achieve results and gain
experience in order to justify upgrading to more
You can access the
Entry Blank and Release Form,
Application Form, Online
License Applications and Renewals and
a number of other USCF-related items directly from the USA
USA Cycling can be contacted directly at:
||United States Cycling Federation |
210 USA Cycling Point
Colorado Springs, CO 80919
Bicycle Racing Association (LAMBRA) is the official point of contact for
race permitting, officiating, event coordination, rider licensing, rider
upgrades, etc. In order to compete in USCF-sanctioned events (all major races
and the District Championships), you must join the United States Cycling
Federation. Membership in the USCF insures that the rider will receive most
regional race announcements, as well as Cycling USA, the USCF newspaper. The
USCF conducts rider training camps, and clinics throughout the year. NOBC
members are strongly urged to join the USCF. For information and an
application, contact the Louisiana/Mississippi
Bicycle Racing Association (LAMBRA). Membership
Basic USA Cycling Road/Track/Cyclocross membership costs $60 (2009) and includes a racing
accident and catastropic insurance,
and other benefits. Applications are available,
from the USAC. The best method is to
renew online. USCF members can also have concurrent
memberships in NORBA and NCCA using the same application form.
USCF Classes and Categories
USCF riders are divided up into a number of classes for both men
and women according to age. Riders under 18 are classified as Juniors (although
they can opt to race as seniors). Riders over the are of 30 are typically considered to be Masters (although they too can
always race as Seniors). Within a given event, races may be held for a number
of age divisions, at the discretion of the race organizers. Most often, there
will be a race for Juniors, a number of races for the various racing categories, one or two races for Masters 35 and over, and a race for Women. Larger events
will have races for more classes. Smaller events may combine classes into
Each USCF rider is assigned to one of five numbered Categories
(Women are assigned to one of four), depending on experience and race results.
New members are automatically assigned to Category 5 for Men and Category 4 for
Women. Many local recreational riders never seek to advance beyone Category 3.
Riders can upgrade to the lower-numbered, more competitive categories based on
a combination of experience and race results. In general, categories are as
Category 1: National Caliber atheletes who often compete in the
same races as professionals.
Category 2: Advanced riders with several
successful seasons of experience in major races.
Category 3: Intermediate riders with one
to three years of experience in major races.
Category 4: Experienced riders in their first or
second seasons and riders who race only occasionally.
Category 5: New Licensees and 1-day licencees.
Most rider upgrades for Louisiana and Mississippi are handled by
LAMBRA. To request an upgrade, sign on to your USA Cycling account ("My USA Cycling"), click on the "License Info." tab, and select "upgrade/downgrade" for the appropriate racing license, or contact Shane
Hernandez (337-234-7474). Additional information on upgrading is available on the LAMBRA website.
USACycling has specific requirements and
procedures for upgrading. You can see them on the USA Cycling Road Categorization Guidelines page. Upgrades from Category 5 to Category 4 require only experience in ten mass-start races. Upgrades to Categories 3, 2 and 1 require a combination of experience and results. There are specific upgrade points schedules that are used to determine when a riders is eligible to upgrade beyond Category 4. A summary of the guildelines from 2009 appears below.
Guidelines and Notes by Category:
- 5-4: Experience in 10 mass start races.
Local Associations may also establish policies where upgrade credit is given for taking a sanctioned rider education clinic.
- 4-3: 20 points in any 12-month period; or experience in 25 races with a minimum of 10 top ten finishes with fields of 30 riders or more, or 20 pack finishes with fields over 50. 30 points in 12 months is an automatic upgrade
- 3-2: 25 points in any 12-month period
40 points in 12 months is an automatic upgrade
- 2-1: 30 points in any 12-month period
50 points in 12 months is an automatic upgrade
Return to NOBC