Irish Cyclo-cross news

The seasons are changing, summer is coming to an end so it must be time for cyclo-cross!!!  The calendar of events we have had confirmed to the commission so far are shown here.   The age categories for cyclo-cross are based on the age group you will be in next year.  For the 2017/2018 cyclo-cross season the list of age categories by year of birth is shown here.

The commission has also been working to get the technical rules reviewed for cyclo-cross.  Part of this review looked at race length for youth riders.  Statement below.

Rule Changes for Youth Cyclocross Races        

As of 1st September 2017, cyclo-cross race durations for Youth riders will be updated as per new rules recently approved by Cycling Ireland. It was felt that the previous rules were out dated, where race durations were based on distances as opposed to time. This now brings Ireland’s rules into line with the majority of leading cyclo-cross nations globally.

Both the Cycling Ireland Off Road Commission’s Youth Co-ordinator Beth McCluskey and new Cyclocross Co-ordinator Andy Layhe were behind the changes after they were initially trialled at the inaugural Youth Cyclo-cross Championships in Dublin last February. The Off Road Commission approved the changes prior to being passed at Cycling Ireland Board level last week.

Over recent months, Layhe had been in touch with many national federations, Youth Cyclesport UK, leading professional cyclo-cross riders and world class coaches about the issue to gauge feedback and see how youth cyclo-cross could be developed to maintain interest for younger riders and ensure they improved.

“Research and experience has shown that shorter races provide better quality racing, where emphasis is on speed, tactics and technical ability as opposed to attrition and endurance.” Layhe said. “Feedback from both riders and parents at the Youth CX championships was very positive and the racing was second to none. It’s important we align ourselves with leading cyclo-cross nations at youth level where riders progress through a system that places more emphasis on speed and technical ability yet continues to be fun and exciting.”

“We have some very talented young riders coming through the cyclo-cross system here and it’s important they learn all aspects of cyclo-cross racing. With the world junior cyclo-cross championships and world cups lasting only 35-40 minutes, it’s imperative younger riders race at realistic durations to reach this level of race time.”

The rule changes, effective from 1st September 2017 are as follows:

Under 8s – 10mins max (winners time)
Under 10s – 10mins max (winners time)
Under 12s – 15mins max (winners time)
Under 14s – 30mins max (winners time)
Under 16s – 30mins max (winners time)

Race organisers and commissaire’s are expected to implement the new rules from the start of September.

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