Several of you have asked questions regarding pre-registration and the increased costs for the Chicago Cyclocross Cup (CCC) this season so we’d like to address them all here.
- First off, thank you all for racing and for all of your comments. Not to sound cliché but the CCC truly values all of your opinions and we try to improve the CCC every year based on rider input. We want to have the most challenging and fun CX series as possible and your feedback is absolutely essential for us to deliver on that idea.
- None of the CCC directors, promoters, or volunteers are compensated for their work and none of us are forced to do what we do. We all are involved because we love ‘cross and want to have a lot of fun. In addition to jobs, families, etc (and occasionally playing in the dirt ourselves) there is a lot of hard work that goes into making the CCC happen every year and there are only so many of us. We encourage anyone who is unsatisfied or wants to help to get involved with the CCC.
- The number one complaint we heard from racers in 2008 (besides the lack of mud?) were that results were both untimely and incorrect. While overall there weren’t really that many issues, the CCC is making every effort this year to have results done correctly first… and then also quickly after the end of each race. Remember the officials are standing out in the cold all day (you only have to race for less than an hour) and basically volunteering too (their compensation is ridiculously small). Keeping track of 75 riders all over a cross course is not an easy thing to do. If you doubt it, we invite you to try it some time.
- Which brings us to pre-registration. Compiling results does not start when the first person crosses the finish line, but rather when the first person registers for the race. Preregistration is not, and will likely never be, mandatory for any CCC race. But just as the ICA did on the road this summer, the CCC is trying to incentivize as many people as possible to pre-reg, to make the entire registration through results process better. The basic idea is “Garbage In, Garbage Out”. If we can’t read your chicken scratch handwriting on the release form, how can we be expected to score you in a race?
- So what’s the catch? All fields (excluding juniors) will see a $5 increases in online registration from last year. Remember though that all CCC races have deeply discounted 2nd races… for only $10. We know this only really applies to masters racers and Cat 3’s, but we think being able to do two quality races for $40 within an hour drive from the city is a pretty good deal.
- The nice round number of $5 was chosen to incorporate both the additional $1 USAC insurance fee charged to the promoter (up from $2 in 2008 to $3 in 2009) and the $2.80 BikeReg service fee. All CCC promoters will be absorbing the BikeReg online service charge so at the end of the day, the promoter is only gaining an extra $1.20. We could have asked promoters to increase their fees by $3.80, but we simply didn’t want anyone fumbling around for change in the cold in registration line while 20 other people are waiting behind… plus there would be no economic incentive to register online.
- Anyone who has ever been promoted a race knows that bike races operate on the slimmest of margins. Even with an additional $1.20 per racer, no promoter is going to get rich and those additional monies are eventually plowed back into the race to make it a better event. If your gripe is that the promoters will be making more profit, remember that day-of registrations always bring in more money for the promoter since there is no online service fee and there is also an additional $5 late fee. So why wouldn’t you pre-reg?
- Also remember that for most teams/clubs their race is their main fund raiser. In some cases (Woodstock) all of the profits go to charity, and in many cases the promoters are donating portions of registration fees back to World Bicycle Relief.
- While probably 90% of you have used BikeReg for a road race this summer, we realize there may be a few hold outs. If you need help using BikeReg, shoot us an email at ChicagoCrossCup@gmail.com and we’ll gladly help you through the process. However, we choose BikeReg.com because we think its hands down the easiest online registration site to use… and we know you’re all smart people anyway… why else would you be racing your bike in the dirt and mud in sub-zero temperatures?
- BikeReg.com was chosen as the Illinois Cycling Association’s preferred online registration site after an extensive due diligence process to find the best online provider. While most online registration sites are similar in many ways, BikeReg is unique in that it:- Focuses only on bicycle racing (i.e. not running, triathlons, etc.), Has a dedicated section of their site for the ICA (look for Illinois Cycling Assoc logo on the main page) and hence the CCC, Has many other relationships with local USAC associations, teams, and event series (including several CX series), and most importantly, Is giving back $0.25 of each racer service fee to the ICA to be put towards things like safety equipment, state championship jerseys, finish line cameras, computers, etc. So in a way, your registration dollars are coming back to you.
I hope the above points have helped you to understand why the CCC is using BikeReg.com this season and why there is an increase in registration fees.
If you have any questions, concerns, ideas, or just want to get involved, don’t hesitate to contact us directly at ChicagoCrossCup@gmail.com!
Director – Chicago Cyclocross Cup
ICA Registration & Results Coordinator