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USAT Rankings
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Two questions concerning the national rankings provided by USAT:

1. Is it right for a race director to have an elite wave in his or her race but submit the results as if everything was run in age groups but website results show such a wave?

2. If the USAT's reasoning for not ranking elite waves is because the participants get clear water and no congestion on the bike, shouldn't every race's first wave not be rankee for the same reason? In other words, the only fair start ia a mass start.

Bob Sigerson
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Re: USAT Rankings [sig] [ In reply to ]
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I think that the elite waves should be ranked, but you are right with your logic. Weh the elite waves run first, they always get the clear shot. When it is up to the RD, there is a little more of a crap shoot as to who goes first, although it tends to be the older age groups.

tommy
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Re: USAT Rankings [sig] [ In reply to ]
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Bob,

I sent a very lengthy email just the other day to the folks at Timberline and USAT giving my views on the subject. I feel that I gave a constructive argument outlining some of the fallacies in their reasoning. I've only received a response from Tim Yount. His response basically said that they were more concerned about leveling the playing field within each age group. I brought up the exact point you mention about first waves as well as a couple of other examples specifically Vineman a couple of years ago where an age grouper won the entire race after starting well behind the pros. The disgruntled pros stated that a definite advantage was gained by starting later since the water was broken up (like drafting) and there was the ability to slingshot past people on the bike making for a faster bike split and run split, the very reasons USAT gave for the exculsion of some elite waves.

I was also curious as to how many compliants they had regarding the inclusion of elite waves, and it'd be nice to know how many complaints they receive from folks (like me) who don't recieve their full ranking due to a race not being counted. I raced in the elite wave at the CapTexas tri last year and received a '0' instead of '93' and lost 4 or 5 ranking positions. I don't know how difficult it would be for RDs to just submit an overall listing of results, with chip timing not too difficult, but that would fix the issue.

In all honesty, it doesn't really matter to me. I race for the competition and until I see a good reason to either turn pro or back down into the age group waves, I'll stick with the 'elite' waves. Anyone else?


Brandon Marsh - Website | @BrandonMarshTX | Cervelo | RokaWetsuits | 1stEndurance | ATC Bikeshop |
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Re: USAT Rankings [sig] [ In reply to ]
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A race director friend of mine informed me the other day that he could no longer do elite waves since someone in the 65-69 age group complained. He has always included the top two or three guys in EVERY age group in the elite wave. Ive stood there next to guys in their 60's, most of them outswimming me anyway:)

My opinion is that there should be an elite wave. It is not fair to the faster folks to have to plow through slower people who are breaststroking on the swim, nor is it safe for either. It is also not safe nor fair to faster folks on the bike to constantly have to go around slower folks, who alot of times are chatting on the bikes and riding two abreast or more. I think it creates an unsafe situation for all involved. Not to mention that the guy who won this race is in the 40-44 age group. He would have never crossed the line first. I came in second behind him an would have most likely crossed first, that would have sucked for both of us. (Though I know I cant beat this guy.)

I would much rather have an elite wave a receive no ranking than be forced into an age group wave and feel that my safety was in jeopardy. I spent many years as a back of the packer before climbing the ranks and when I was much slower I wouldnt have wanted to get put up front. As a slower swimmer in years past I got trampled by faster guys who would swim right over me. My wife, a ridiculously strong swimmer faces this situation every race as women normally start in the last wave of many races. Last year my wife got kicked in the face in two separate races by breaststrokers. (I have no problem with people swimming like that, im glad theyre willing to participate!!! But it is fair for neither) I say either have a situation where you could "Seed" yourself or have a mass start (which I dont particularly care for either) . My feeling is that safety must be the priority....Just my thoughts..

mmm....another thought, maybe triathlon could go to a situation like road cyclists use (Cat 1 thru V) where you race based on ability. Any opinions??
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Re: USAT Rankings [marty] [ In reply to ]
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In Reply To:
Last year my wife got kicked in the face in two separate races by breaststrokers.
Getting Kicked in the face sucks, no two ways about it. But there has not been a race where i have not been kicked in the face or worse. I think it is a fact of the sport, and it is something we will have to get used to. The only way to solve the problem would be to set up cats. like you mentioned. But the problem will still exist on the swim, when there is a mass of people in a small body of water, somebody will take a hit, it is inevitable.
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