Category Upgrade/Downgrade Information

Below you will find some information on NEBRA’s policies for rider upgrading and downgrading. NEBRA processes racing license upgrades for USA Cycling Road, Track and Cyclocross categories. We administer upgrades up to Category 2 in those disciplines. All Category 1 upgrades are handled directly by USA Cycling. These guidelines are based the USAC Rulebook, section 1.E. Please note that the rulebook is revised on a regular basis. We recommend double checking this information against the latest PDF version on the USA Cycling website. Changes and revisions in the USAC rulebook are generally noted by red text.

All upgrades are handled electronically through your USA Cycling account page. When you log into your USAC account you will see a menu bar under the welcome message. Select ‘license’ and that will bring you to a page that has all of your USAC license information. Next to your active racing license you will see an option to ‘request upgrade/downgrade’ on the right. That will bring you to a submission page where you can request your upgrade. Please fill in the resume section with the pertinent qualifying results and submit the form. Upgrade/downgrade requests take about 3 business days to process so please plan ahead.

Only races permitted by USA Cycling or Foreign races permitted by a UCI affiliated National Federation may be used for upgrades. Results used for upgrades must be from from the previous 36 months.

Please DO NOT send your license. Unless specifically requested, license stickers will not be sent. We highly recommend the use of the ‘green’ license USA Cycling smartphone app. Contact your Regional Coordinator via email with questions or circumstances not addressed in the rulebook.

Upgrades to category 1 require license reissue ($15 fee).

Category Downgrade Information:

Racers may request to move down in category if they feel that they are not competitive at their current level. Once downgraded should a rider want to return to a higher category they will need to requalify through the standard upgrade process. All downgrades are periodically reviewed to make sure that the riders new lower category is appropriate and to ensure fair competition. If a rider is regularly placing on the podium or earning upgrade points in their new lower category the NEBRA administrator reserves the right to return that rider to their original category.
Downgrades to Category 5 are not allowed.

The two types of upgrade set out in the rulebook are voluntary, and mandatory. Once you have met the minimum standards for an upgrade you can voluntarily request to be moved up to the next category. You submit your request online and it comes to the local administrator for review. The administrator reviews your race results and can either approve or decline the upgrade. If you have met the mandatory upgrade standard set out in the rulebook your upgrade must be approved. The administrator can also upgrade a rider who has surpassed that mandatory standard but has not formally applied for an upgrade.

Upgrade Considerations with Combined  Category Fields:

In races such as a Category 3/4 race, where categories are combined but a single set of results is produced with upgrade points are awarded on the overall finish placing but the field size is the number of racers your current category or higher. So for most combined fields it lowers the overall number of upgrade points available. This also applies to Masters races.

If a combined field where results are produced separately- not annotated- upgrade points are awarded as if the races were run individually. Each field must have their own results without overlap- no annotations or ‘double dipping’ on prizes or results is allowed.

 

General Considerations for Road License Category Changes:

For road license upgrades only road events may be considered. The event must be sanctioned by USA Cycling, and must be a mass start road race, circuit race or criterium.

No Time Trial or Hillclimb results may be considered, nor can Grand Fondo results be considered except as noted below for 5-4 upgrades.
All results must meet minimum distance and time standards per the most recent USAC rulebook.
Road and Circuit Race events that do not meet the minimum Road distances but do meet the Criterium distances accumulate points according to the Criterium points schedule.
For all upgrades beyond the experience based Category 5-4 upgrade, all points must be verifiable through the USA Cycling Results and Ranking page and/or Road-Results.com. Category E training race or weeknight race results that do not publish full verifiable results through the USA Cycling Results and rankings system may not be used for upgrading.
Only results obtained within the last 36 months may be used.
Strava does not count for upgrading.

NEBRA Road Upgrade Guidelines:

Category 5 – 4: Acquire 10 points by any combination of the following: Complete all three sections of a Beginner Racer Program (BRP) clinic (2 points, allowed up to 10 points). Finish a massed start race (1 point, allowed up to 10 points). Participate in a mentored raceexperience where the mentor is at least a cat 3 rider and has been approved by the Local Association. (1 point, allowed up to 5 points). Participate in USA Cycling-approved education clinics. Points available  based on the curriculum, length and content. (points determined by USA Cycling, allowed up to 5 points). Participate in a USA Cycling sanctioned Gran Fondo. (1 point, allowed up to 3 points).

Category 4 – 3: Men- Accumulate a minimum of 20 upgrade points; Women- Accumulate a minimum of 16 upgrade points. 30 upgrade points within 12 months is a mandatory* upgrade.
Category 3 – 2: Men- Accumulate a minimum of 30 upgrade points; Women- Accumulate a minimum of 24 upgrade points.   40 upgrade points within 12 months is a mandatory* upgrade.
Category 2 – 1: Accumulate a minimum of 35 upgrade points**  50 upgrade points within 12 months is a mandatory* upgrade.

* Juniors are exempt from mandatory upgrades.
** For Category 2 -1 upgrades, only 10 of the upgrade points may be earned in races that are part of a series or master races; and no points may be earned in collegiate races.

 

General Considerations for Cyclocross License Category Changes:

For Cyclocross license upgrades only Cyclocross events may be considered. The event must be sanctioned by USA Cycling.

For all upgrades beyond the experience based Category 5-4 upgrade for men, all points must be verifiable through the USA Cycling Results and Ranking page and/or Road-Results.com. Category E training race or weeknight race results that do not publish full verifiable results through the USA Cycling Results and rankings system may not be used for upgrading.
Only results obtained within the last 36 months may be used.
Strava does not count for upgrading.

NEBRA Cyclocross Upgrade Guidelines:

Category 5 – 4: Finish 5 mass start races. 10 mass start race finishes is a mandatory* upgrade.
Category 4 – 3: Accumulate a minimum of 10 upgrade points;  15 upgrade points within 12 months, or 2 wins in a field of at least 30 is a mandatory* upgrade.
Category 3 – 2: Accumulate a minimum of 15 upgrade points.   20 upgrade points within 12 months, or 2 wins in a field of at least 30 is a mandatory* upgrade.
Category 2 – 1: Accumulate a minimum of 20 upgrade points** 25 upgrade points within 12 months, or 2 wins in a field of at least 40 is a mandatory* upgrade.

* Juniors are exempt from mandatory upgrades.
** For Category 2 -1 upgrades, only 10 of the upgrade points may be earned in races that are part of a series or master races.

Cyclocross Conversion Guidelines

Cyclocross upgrades may also be requested based on road or mountain bike categories. The conversion tables may be found in the USA Cycling rulebook. Please note- these are not automatic upgrades, you must still submit a resume through the online upgrade process and be approved by the administrator.

 

General Considerations for Track License Category Changes:

Track license categories refer to traditional velodrome racing. For track license upgrades only track events may be considered. The event must be sanctioned by USA Cycling.

For all upgrades points/results must be verifiable through the USA Cycling Results and Ranking page. Collegiate results may be used for upgrading according to the table found in the USA Cycling rulebook under rule 1.D.6
Points and Race Days must be from the current racing year, or from the previous year (at 1/2 value)*.
Strava does not count for upgrading.

NEBRA Track Upgrade Guidelines:

Category 5 – 4: Complete a velodrome class or 4 race days.

Category 4 – 3: 5 race days and 20 points.

Category 3 – 2: 5 race days and 25 points

Category 2 – 1: 5 race days and 30 points

Additional Considerations:

 

  1. Ten-person field minimum for upgrading from categories 3-5, and twenty-person field minimum for upgrade to category 1.
  2. *Fifty percent of upgrading points and number of times raced will be carried over to the next year. Points do not carry over to the next category.
  3. When upgrading to a category 1, points earned need to be from more than one velodrome.
  4. A “race day” is defined as one full day of racing. A race day can include a number of events such as a kilometer, sprints or time trial, but it only counts as one race day.
  1. Omniums will be counted for upgrading if at least half of the events on the omnium were massed-start.
  2. Women and Juniors earn one point for every five race days when upgrading from category 4 through category 2.
  3. Races exempt from upgrading are Youth races and races of more than two categories (i.e., “A” and “B” races).