Suggested Revisions to USA Cycling Cyclocross Upgrade Criteria
October 13, 2015

The following are some suggested revisions to the USA Cycling upgrade criteria for cyclocross events. They were submitted for consideration by JD Bilodeau, NEBRA Administrator to the USA Cycling technical director and the USA Cycling Cyclocross Sport Committee on 10/13/2015.


Hi All-

I would like to present some suggested rule revisions for cyclocross. Over the course of the past few months I’ve had numerous discussions with riders here in New England about the cyclocross upgrade criteria. I’d like to present some updated criteria that I feel would more accurately reward racers, present an additional tranche to reflect the large field sizes we normally see in cross, and streamline the upgrade process.

I’ve also received several requests to have the mandatory upgrade process automated. I realize that this is a challenge given the various types of data uploaded by promoters and timing companies. However given the number of requests for this feature I got I wanted to include it in my email.

Changes I would recommend:

Awarding upgrade points deeper in the field. Cyclocross is more akin to time trial efforts than road racing- the best riders often tend to make it to the front by the end of the race. The points depth should be more accurately reward the efforts put in by riders in cyclocross.

An additional tranche of points should be created for races with a field size of 80+. This offers larger events the ability to offer more available upgrade points, and rewards riders for competing in the largest events in their region.

Award Category 4 women one upgrade point for finishing a mass start cyclocross race, with a maximum of 10 of those points being available for 4-3 upgrades. This gives beginner women an experience based credit, similar to the Cat 5 – 4 upgrade criteria for men.

Eliminate the “2 race win” mandatory upgrade language from all cyclocross upgrades. Winning races already gives riders points. This additional upgrade criteria is redundant and generally confusing. Instead stick with points based mandatory upgrade criteria, and make those similar to the road point schedules.

Increase the points requirements for upgrading to reflect the new points tables and to mirror the road race upgrade guidelines. The amount of points required to go from one category to another should remain the same for all disciplines, and only the points distribution tables should change per discipline. Additionally, the mandatory upgrade language and points requirements should also mirror road.

I would recommend the following point distribution for cyclocross races.:

field size
placing 5-10 11-20 21-50 50-80 81+
1 3 7 10 11 12
2 2 5 8 9 9
3 1 4 6 7 8
4 3 5 6 7
5 2 4 5 6
6 1 3 4 5
7 2 3 4
8 1 2 3
9 1 2
10 1


I would also recommend changing the required upgrade points and language to:

  • Requirements for upgrading:

5-4: Voluntary upgrade after 5 races. Experience in 10 races is a mandatory upgrade.

4-3: Voluntary upgrade with 20 points. 30 points in 12 months is a mandatory upgrade.* ***

3-2: Voluntary upgrade with 30 points. 40 points in 12 months is a mandatory upgrade.*

2-1: Voluntary upgrade with 35 points. 50 points in 12 months is a mandatory upgrade.**

*Juniors are exempt from this mandatory upgrade

** For category 1 upgrades, only 10 of the points may be earned in races that are part of a weekly series or may be earned in master’s races.

*** Category 4 Women earn 1 upgrade point for finishing a mass start race. A maximum of 10 such points may be used for a 4-3 upgrade.


Thank you for your consideration of these proposals.


JD Bilodeau

Administrator, New England Bicycle Racing Association