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Beginning Cat 4 racing in the south west

bukowski102bukowski102 Posts: 88
edited November 2010 in Amateur race
Hello there I am very interested in starting Cat 4 racing nxt year, I feel I am fit enough and have experience riding in groups. I am interested in purchasing a day license to see how It goes.
My question is where are the road racing venues in the south west? I am in bristol.
When do they start? which would be an appropriate race to start in?


Many thanks

Posts

  • ProssPross Posts: 25,483
    Castle Coombe has a regular Thursday? night series and I think there are quite a lot of races on an airfield in Yeovil. Not sure when they start but late March or early April would be my guess. There are also a few 'proper' races in the area. You could also try coming across the bridge and racing at Llandow or Pembrey as quite a few others from Bristol do.
  • Tom ButcherTom Butcher Posts: 7,137
    If you get a BC membership that should come with a provisional licence - depending on the the races you plan to do that may cover you - or at least give you a free day licence. THese tend to be lower cat circuit races.

    Otherwise I'd just bite the bullet and get a licence - if you are paying full whack for a day licence to ride proper road races you only have to do a couple and you could pretty much have bought a full licence.

    There is a table somewhere on the BC site which tells you what licence requirements are at each classification of race but I don't have a spare month to find it *



    *(in joke about BC website in case OP thought it was a dig at them).

    it's a hard life if you don't weaken.
  • milesemilese Posts: 1,233
    Go on BC website and look at the results from last year in your area to get an idea of what's coming up next year.

    Any ideas of when next years racing programme is published?
  • BronzieBronzie Posts: 4,927
    milese wrote:
    Any ideas of when next years racing programme is published?
    2011 Events are already available on the Race Calendar on the BC website
  • jonmackjonmack Posts: 522
    How fitting, I was coming on the forum to look about starting to do some races next season and I live in Weston-s-Mare, so this topic is perfect.

    I've been looking on the BC website for races in the south west, seems there are a lot at "Merryfield Airfield", all on a closed circuit which I've heard is "flat and short".

    I was looking at doing http://www.britishcycling.org.uk/events ... it-Races-1 and seeing how I get on, then go from there...

    I don't really know what to expect, so I'm gonna do lots of researching over the winter to get my head around everything.

    Check out the BC calendar and membership page for more info, the site seems to be pretty in depth and explains the points system in simple terms which is what I'm most worried about. I think it's just gonna be a case of train up over this winter, turn up on the day, and hope I don't get laughed at for having a £3k bike and placing last... I am really worried about what kinda speeds are gonna be being averaged, I usually average about 28-30k, seems like riding at that speed I'll just get dropped by everyone!
  • jibberjimjibberjim Posts: 2,810
    jonmack wrote:
    I think it's just gonna be a case of train up over this winter, turn up on the day, and hope I don't get laughed at for having a £3k bike and placing last... I am really worried about what kinda speeds are gonna be being averaged, I usually average about 28-30k, seems like riding at that speed I'll just get dropped by everyone!

    Find some friends, and start riding in groups fast, try to drop each other. From the above you're going to be fit enough to race in 4th cats, what you're possibly not going to be is experienced enough to not get dropped on the first few corners. Whilst racing in small groups doesn't give you all the experience you can get it will help!
    Jibbering Sports Stuff: http://jibbering.com/sports/
  • Tom ButcherTom Butcher Posts: 7,137
    Good advice from Jim - like he says you really need to be riding with other people who do race - that'll bring you on and you'll get to see what kind of standard people are.

    it's a hard life if you don't weaken.
  • jonmackjonmack Posts: 522
    Thanks for that guys, I'll have a chat to some of the local riders and see if they'd be up for that some time.
  • g_ripg_rip Posts: 7
    Last season I raced every Thursday evening throughout the summer from the beginning of May until the middle of August. I rode alternate weeks at Castle Coombe motor racing circuit and Ilton Airfield in Somerset. Ilton is also sometimes called Merryfield but they are the same place ! Ilton is about 10 miles from Taunton along the A358 towards Ilminster. It takes a bit more than an hour to get there from Bristol.
    Castle coombe runs every week and is usually a handicap format with 4th cat riders going of first, 3rd cats next then Elite/1st/2nd Cats just over a lap behind.
    Ilton racing is split so there are seperate races for each catergory. Usually 4ths in there own race, 3rds in there own and E12 in the other. There are also several races at Ilton throughout the summer on Saturdays.
    There is also closed circuit racing at Upavon airfield in wiltshire. Although a bit further to travel from Bristol it dosen't take much longer than Ilton. In 2010 a summer series ran on Mondays with 2 races (3/4cats and E/1/2cats). There is also a winter series which runs at Upavon. The first next year is 8th Jan and runs for about 10 weeks on saturday mornings. Can be affected by the weather tho'. The ones I rode this year had fields of 50 plus in3/4 cats and may well be a good place for you to start out.
    As far as 3rd/4th ct racing goes on a totally flat circuit with no sharp corners like Ilton the average speed will be between 23-25mph. If you are used to riding in a group and know how to follow a wheel and stay out of the wind then you should be able to keep up with the main field. My advice would be to get as much experience as possible riding in groups. Get out with a club if you dont already.
    As far as getting a licence goes it will cost you an extra £10 at both CC and Ilton and Upavon for a day licence. You need a full licence to ride these events so if you have not bought a licence you will have to buy a day licence each time. 4-5 events in the season and you have your money back ! The provisional licence that comes with BC membership does not cover these events.
    There are also many road races within travelling distance of Bristol. I'd get a bit of experience of large fields on the closed circuits first. Details of all races can be found on BC website and next years calender is already starting to appear.
    I plan on racing every week this coming summer (and winter) and whatever RR's there are at weekends It's brilliant fun
    Bukowski102 and johnmack My e-mail in profile if you want any more info Bukowski102 possible lift share to races from Bristol??
  • jonmackjonmack Posts: 522
    Will be sending you an email this evening after I train. Excellent post though, thank you very much.
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