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TimKendall

Speeding Up
Dec 28, 2009
129
0
36
Nagoya
#1
Yes, I have read all the posts regarding categories here in Japan, but am still very confused. Surely it shouldn't be up to me to decide what category I am.

The way that I remeber it in the UK was...

Points were given to the first six places in a race, and this was recorded on the back of the racing license. For premier calander races, the placing/points were for the top 10.

3rd Cat - Basically novices, or those that had scored less than 10 points on their license.

2nd Cat - If you scored more that 10 points on your license, you are promoted to 2nd Cat. You have no choice.

1st Cat - scoring an additional 35 points on your license as a 2nd Cat will get you promoted to 1st Cat. Again, no choice.

The reason that I can understand the system her is that I get to choose which Cat I am, and there dosen't seem to be a lot on consistency in the national system vs local systems.

Yesterday, I had the choice of 'Sports', 'Beginner', 'Intermediate', and 'Elite'! I rode the beginner race for a luagh and won, but there were another 30 in my race that were no more beginner than I am.

Is there any plans to intro a nationwide system that covers all races?

Tim
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#2
Hey Tim,

tried to answer all of your questions but its a bit of a maze out there so I have written what I know so far and hope members like Andywood and other JBCF/JCF racers add to this sticky.

Also we have several members like MOB and Ludwig that know the JCRC system inside and out who can add to my ramblings as well as Deej, Echo3, Mike, Tom and other mountain goats that can hopefully add more information regarding the hill climbs.

One of the biggest problems serious races face is the amount of non-JCR races that are set up by local clubs, shops and organisations. I have no idea why they do not approach the JCR for recognition, especailly the JCRC system that is probably the largest non recognised events in Japan, but I have a feel its to do with money and insurance.

Hopefully my sticky will help you get a better understand of where you would place in the system and again this is just a foundation based on my own personal experience and for it to help others I need members to add thier comparisons or experiences to the sticky so that it grows in to a knowledge base.

Japanese Racing Classification Information and Comparison
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#3
Thanks for this! Great consolidated viewpoint. Too bad Japan just doesn't put everything into a single (discpline) sanctioning body. They'd have more overall support and consistency throughout the entire cycling and racing community..
 

TimKendall

Speeding Up
Dec 28, 2009
129
0
36
Nagoya
#4
Guys,
Thanks for this.

As was pointed out, it is a shame that there isn't just one system. It was a little bizarre being asked, what category are you today!?.... Errrr, well err, I don't fanct being spat out the back, or riding 35km in this heat, so I'd like to chose the begiiner category please... Wow, the are 62 riders in my race, and only 18 in the main event (expert cat).... me thinks that this is nothing to do with performance ability!

Brute of a course yesterday (Little World, Aichi)... 2.6km circuit with a 1.5km climb in it, and the rest being downhill.
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
1,739
1,390
133
Niigata
#5
James, very good information indeed.

Worth mentioning that within the TR the difference is in ability is huge between the full-time pros and your every day salaryman. A few non-pros can compete well (ex. Nishitani san of Ovest and Morimoto san of Island) but often the list of DNF is huge, even on relatively easy road races like Gunma and Ishikawa.

As for entry to pro races such as the Japan Cup, Tour of Japan and Tour of Hokkaido, this is on an invitation basis so only the top teams can compete.

Despite it's UCI status, the JBCF itself is a surprisingly poorly run organisation really! The system for promotion and demotion between categories seems to change each year and is completely at their discretion. However, the chance to rub shoulders with the best is what makes it so popular.

Andy
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#7
I think the JCRC and JFBM categories make just as much or little sense as elsewhere.

All other races are basically ad hoc, so out of category, and so you choose yourself who you want to compete with. Which has some merits too.
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,516
213
83
Noda
japanichiban.com
#8
We have a few guys in JBCF and they were super strong at JCRC...but now they are really struggling.
The gap is quite huge between the two associations.

Once you ride in JBCF though not many come back to JCRC.

The team racing is really good though at JBCF and with our guys to form a team they had to team up with other guys in other teams. It's pretty hard to field a strong team after progressing through JCRC.
We have 3 teams.

Semas Shin Matsudo (99%) JCRC level.
Semas Makuhari (mixed levels)
SEO Racing. (S class JCRC and JBCF and Keirin).

We have lost a few guys to other teams at the highest levels.

I watched the JBCF Ogawa race in Nagano last year. Super hard. Most riders don't even finish the course.

If you look through the JBCF results pages you will see a large percentage don't finish.
Most of them though are doing their best for the Ace and have no intention of finishing. Die for the team.
Unless you're the best rider in the team in those races you do a lot of training and not much racing...

It's great though that Japan has the 2 associations (and more) and that you can ride as seriously as you like or just do it for fun...
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#10
Thanks, James, very illuminating, especially about JBCF.

What does it take to acquire a racing license?

Ludwig
(JCRC + Tour du Japon D-class double champion 2009, with no further ambitions...)
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#11
Good question Ludwig and I added to the Sticky regarding licence requirements.

Actually there is no requirements needed on behalf of the rider except filling in the form and paying for it. But having one will get you discounts on certain events like the JCF citizens races that are held the same time as the UCI events.

To race in the JBCF and UCI events you must have one.
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
1,739
1,390
133
Niigata
#12
Ogawa? Definitely the toughest race in Japan. 5 climbs up the the same steep 500m climb. What's worse it's on the last weekend in July! Why they don't do it in the spring or autumn I don't know. It's the only race where I've fallen over after crossing the line!

Licence - yes easy to get. If I remember rightly, about 5000 yen first time and 4000 yen thereafter. The licences are issued by prefecture. There is the opportunity to ride for your prefecture in the national games event (kokusai taikai) but you probably need to be able to ride both track and road.

Having a licence also makes you subject to fines (not signing on, dangerous riding, arguing with officials etc). I got one for refusing to take a ski lift! And also to doping control. I was subject to testing after 2 Japan Cups in a row - I worked out the odds and needess to say I don't reckon there is room for the word "random" in the UCI's drug testing procedure....

Andy