USAC Changing Upgrade Policy

Are the MTB requirements for a pro upgrade removed where you can only get points from certain races/series (AMBC, Nats, etc…)?

I’m interested to see how mandatory upgrades are handled. I had 28 points towards Cat 2 and now I have over 60… Technically I must upgrade but most of those points are from the weekly Wednesday crit. I have to hang on for dear life in the bigger crits and forcing me to go to 2 would have me getting dropped.

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None of this will matter unless they start enforcing mandatory upgrades.


I think you get points from both.


That’s my interpretation as well

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I cant figure out how they would do mandatory since they don’t even keep track of it on the website anymore???


Exactly, but now I feel obligated. I guess if someone wants to make an accusation of sandbagging they can bring it up to his or her local USAC rep. Even then they can only look by what RoadResults says.

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Hopefully! I was probably reading it with an overly critical mood.

They look like they are the same requirements as last year, but without some of the field size and time language.

The “two top-three” or “three top-five” probably refers to regular USAC races of a reasonable field size (it was 15 last year).

Top 3 at Nationals probably still refers to finishing time? Otherwise they’ve dramatically increase the number of potential pros.

Heck, you could self select into Cat 1 your first year, race 3 USAC races to go to Nationals and then podium and boom, you are a pro within 6 months.

Boy. I really hope the USAC gets involved in gravel racing. We could really use this level of clarity and organization. It would make everything so much better.



I think you tell on people who are sandbaggers for mandatory.

It should make it way easier to keep track of points now since it’s the same for all races.

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I think for some people who excel in local races but struggle in bigger ones will have a problem. I wouldn’t want to be accused of sandbagging at my local crit only to get smashed somewhere else. Our local crit is USAC sanctioned so I’ve racked up a lot of points that way.


It would just make sense that they have all the info to keep track of that information in one spot. Would make it easier on everyone. I myself am not sure of how many points I have but I would say it is over 20 but have no interest to try and figure it out lol.

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They need further clarification on the stage race thing. The points table for road says “mass start only” at the bottom. A GC finishing position isn’t technically mass start, but I guess they mean for this table to apply to GC as well (unless there is some additional info on stage race points elsewhere). If you look at this table literally, you’d only get credit for the mass start events within the stage race and no points for GC. I can’t believe they would do that.

Also, on MTB, you’d think they would add a time limit on forced upgrade for X top 5 finishes. Are you really going to force someone to upgrade from 2 to 1 when they have those top 5 finishes over a bunch of years? An occasional top 5 finish in a field of 15+ isn’t exactly sand bagging and should not result in a forced upgrade. I’m sure they don’t police it, but it just seems like a dumb thing to put on paper. I like the way they did it for road. 3 wins in 12 months should probably require a forced upgrade.

Their site states GC points are awarded based on the road matrix. Also stated is that upgrading looks at the past 36 months of racing.

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I don’t have a lot of thoughts on a lot of aspects of this as a cat 4 (it took me from 2014-2019 to actually get 10 races to upgrade lol)

I think the at will update from cat 5/novice is interesting, as it has the potential to move the stronger people on earlier, but it makes me wonder how many of the “good” novices will actually choose to upgrade vs stay in and just enjoy beating the novices.


The removal of the language defining races based on distance hugely simplifies things

I also don’t see any language qualifying who is considered for ‘starters’. Does this mean in a P123 field you can earn points based on total field size or would a 2->1 upgrade point decision subtract out the cat 3 starters?

Certainly seems to be implied, but hard to imagine they’ve moved that far away from that type of logic

Sorry if I missed it when reading through. But when does this go into effect?

Are we still subtracting the number of racers from a lower category (for mixed fields)? Or are the points based only on the total number of “starters” now?

For example, I am a Cat 3 and I race in a 3/4 field, does the entire field count for the # of Starters or do I only count the Cat 3’s (like before)? It is not clearly stated in this policy…

USAC put zero thought into the XC racing upgrades…there needs to be some minimum criteria for the move from CAT 2 to 1…voluntarily moving up should not be allowed.