And another NAUCC question

My question was posted here, but maybe it’s best to reply here.


Wendy and the current USA officers will be able to officially answer your question, but I can give you some unofficial, historical information. The citizenship requirement for NAUCC competitors was instituted to comply with the demands of the event’s insurance carrier, not, as you stated in the other thread, to prevent NAUCC 2002 from being rushed by international competitors. It was incorporated into the the May 2002 USA, Inc. Official Competition Rule Book:

“1.23 ELIGIBILITY: All attendees must be current (paid up) USA members to register. Registrations must be completed, signed, and fully paid before the rider can participate in any events. Attendees must be citizens or legal residents of the United States of America or Canada to register as competitors. Persons not eligible to register as competitors are welcome to register as non-competitors.”

To my knowledge, Rule 1.23 is still in effect.

Tom Daniels
Former President
USA, Inc.

  • and -

Event Director
NAUCC 2002 and UNICON 11

Thanks for answering. Shame (if) it’s still effective; it was a nice event for competitors that have no competition posibilities at all in their countries.

Maybe the UCI can help you out with that. :stuck_out_tongue:

Unfortunately, as long as the USA’s insurance doesn’t change, that rule probably cannot.

Hey John, Kaori was pretty sure that she was told (by you?) that if she lived in the US for more than one year, then she would be able to compete at NAUCC. She had only been in the US for about 4 months for NAUCC 2005, and although she competed, she was never mentioned in the results. For this summer, she will have been in the US for more than two years. Will she be able to compete?

I think she should. From memory, the wording in that section of the rules says something about “legal residence” but I don’t know if it gives a timeframe. Surely two years is more than enough, but I believe there is some flexibility on interpretation, and I’m not sure who gets to make the final decision.

Okay, I looked it up. Tom Daniels quoted the entire section above so it’s pretty simple. We did not attempt to define what makes a citizen or legal resident. If someone has been living here for two years and attending school (in other words not an illegal alien or similar) they should be allowed to compete.

This rule (the whole rulebook) hasn’t changed since 2002. I highly doubt that someone in Kaori’s position should be diallowed from competition. The way I interpret it, even four months should be sufficient, as long as she’s a legal resident. Wait a minute, I just looked up the results, and it shows her as 2nd place in Expert Individual Freestyle. I was one of the judges! So I believe she was a competitor:
She might not have entered anything else.

Thanks John, we both look forward to coming to NAUCC 2007.

For some reason I remember seeing the results posted somewhere that didn’t include Kaori, probably excluding some information.

Ok, I found the thread:

I guess it does say “North American Riders” on the results, though I’m not sure why that would be important.

Also, in your post (#45), you say that when you judged Kaori that you would have tied her with Amy, but you instead tied her with second even though there was a much bigger gap between Kaori and Christy. I understand that Kaori could have competed at NAUCC, but why was her ranking lowered even though she was an eligible competitor?

Maybe this is more the focus of my question, will she have a fair ranking now that she is a legal resident and has lived here for more than two years?

Thanks for asking, Leo. Tom’s right, there is a USA rule that precludes riders outside North America from competing in NAUCCs, and the rule was put in place because of insurance issues. Currently the USA Board is taking another look at the issue. I’ll let you know what’s decided.

Also I’m not sure why it was listed that way, but on reading that thread, it becomes apparent that the non-NA riders were indeed not official competitors. Again this may boil down to our insurance carrier’s definition of who is eligible to be covered rather than any other definition we put in our rulebook. I hope that’s what the USA Board is currently looking into. It’s nice to hear about the USA Board doing something every once in a while.

Apparently overseas riders were allowed to enter many events, but not to displace the North American riders from the championship awards. Now that I think about it, I believe the policy was that “North American Champions” should be people from North America. Of course that begs the question of when Kaori can beconsidered a legal resident. In the instance of Kaori, it looks like the intent was for her to tie with the next lower-scoring rider to give her a ranking, while leaving the three medals for North American riders. Too bad she didn’t receive the tie for first place, as I imagine he score was closer to that of Amy than to Cristy.

But then again maybe not, as I only know how I scored the riders and was not privvy to the scores of the other judges. All scores are submitted, basically in the form of ranking, and then the overall ranking is determined from that. If you only look at the ranking it doesn’t show “closeness,” just one above the other.

Back to the insurance thing, and I hope Wendy is reading this:
If indeed our insurance carrier doesn’t allow competition by non-NA riders, the USA is putting itself at some level of risk by having them participate in the competition events at all. Note that this is liability insurance only, but if something bad happens it will probably be tied to one or more specific riders. If any of those riders are not covered by the policy it creates a possible very deep financial hole for the USA, convention hosts, venue operators (the college) and possibly the USA directors themselves. My opinion is that if we let 'em play we should let 'em win, even if it is the “North American” championships.

As a judge I only have the power to rank the competitors. Therefore I ranked Amy a tick higher than Kaori, and made sure they did not have the same score for Difficulty, which would be the tiebreaker if the overall rankings came out tied. The decision to do the tie with second instead of first was intended, I guess, to show a more obvious ranking for first and second, though this created a less-obvious ranking for second and third.

Good question. “Legal resident” should be all you need, but I would request a straight answer from the USA Board, or from Connie (as the presumed Chief Judge) so they can work out their policy with plenty of time to think about it.

Thanks for your posting, John. I am reading this. As you can imagine, we (RTUC) are well aware of insurance and liability issues. If the USA Board decides that it’s okay to have competitors from other countries, the insurance we choose for NAUCC 007 will ultimately determine whether it’s okay for foreign competitors to compete or not.

Thank you both for the thorough responses. If either of you could update me, as well as the rest of the unicycling community with information, that would be greatly appreciated. :slight_smile:

Glad you see it to.
Let me make a little correction:
I don’t need the UCI; I quit bicycycling and I quit unicycling competition.
But yes;
the UCI could help unicycling with many issues like insurance.
If a bicyclist has licence at a national federation it includes worldwide covered insurance at (official) competitions.
For that same reason bicyclists don’t need to sign up in each country they’ll compete.
That way organizers of events don’t have to deal with dealing to get deals with insurance companies (and can focus their attention on better things, in stead of re-inventing the wheel over and over again).

Did I preach it was time for a change a while ago?

Kaori received a fair ranking from the judges at NAUCC 2005. Her results were not biased by her country of origin. On the other hand, the awards given out allowed the person who received 3rd to get the runner-up title.

The judges ranked Kaori as: 1st (one judge), tied for 1st (one judge), 2nd (two judges) and 3rd (three judges). Kaori’s presentation scores are always excellent and most judges rated her very high. On the other hand, her difficulty scores aren’t always as high and most judges rated her 3rd in the difficulty scoring. Overall, Amy’s rankings added up to 8.5 (lower is better); Kaori’s to 15.5; and Christy’s to 19. Therefore, Kaori was actually closer to Christy than Amy.

For this year’s NAUCC - Kaori will be able to compete as a legal US resident and I am looking forward to seeing her routine in the Individual Expert Freestyle competition. Other unicyclists who are in the US as tourists might not be able to compete as it depends on the insurance.


Thanks for the info. For this year however, will she be tied again with a place, or be included in the results normally?

Also, I know that the deadline to register is this weekend, but I know of someone that might want to come, but lives out of the country. Do you happen to know when we will know about allowing foreign competitors?


I believe Kaori is currently a legal resident of the US - which allows her to compete as a full competitor at NAUCC. If she is only in the US on a temporary visa and has no intentions to remain as a US citizen, then we have a grey area. Personally, I think she should compete fully.

As a side note, Kaori competed for the US team last summer at Unicon, as she qualified under the IUF rules.

Wendy will be the one to answer about the insurance question.


Thanks for all the info from Connie and Wendy. It sounds like the USA needs to establish some policy (if it’s too late to make further updates for the rulebook) on that gray area. There’s the insurance side, and the “can non-NA riders win?” side, which each pose some questions.

For someone like Kaori, her visa status must be of the type that allows her to attend school here, which makes it of a long term nature. Whatever that is, someone attending school here should be allowed to compete (unless the insurance carrier says otherwise). But does the person need to spend a minimum amount of time in the country first? If so, how much?

Someone who is visiting the country but is not working or attending school, and having a regular tourist visa, should probably be in the category of not being a NA rider, even if they’ve been here a long time. This has to do with whether or not they are a legal resident.

On the insurance side, there may be possible limitations of who can participate based on citizenship. I don’t think this was a concern in 2005, because foreign riders were allowed to participate and I don’t think we have changed our insurance carrier. But these are the kinds of things we want to know the answer to…

Thanks also for the judging details from Connie. They indicate one (or both) of two things:

  • Our judging system still has a problem with the difference between Japanese and “trick-oriented” styles of Freestyle performance
  • Our judges need better training

Probalby both, as a simple reading of any judging criteria can still lead to multiple interpretations. We probably need more training for judges, with examples of various performance styles, and basic information on what should be of value in each. For example, I think many American judges fail to realize the difficulty level involved in putting a high level of polish on a performance. We’re not used to seeing near-perfect execution at the highest levels.

Sorry, Matt. I can’t tell you when we’ll know about allowing foreign competitors at NAUCC 2007. We’re currently working with our own (RTUC’s) insurance company on NAUCC coverage and rates and will let everyone know what we learn.

On a brighter note, the early registration deadline has been changed to April 28, 2007.


International Competitors Welcome at NAUCC 2007

Although only riders from North America will be eligible to win national titles, we’re glad to announce that international competitors are welcome to compete at NAUCC 2007 this summer in Saline, Michigan. Visit for registration and information.

For those of you who are really on a budget or have been snoozing (like me) and missed booking one of the NAUCC rooms at the Best Western, there is another hotel right next door. I called and got us the AAA rate of $41.40 a night. The advertised rate isn’t too bad either. On the web site it says they have a pool and free breakfast. They’ve never heard of NAUCC but together we can change that. We’ll have to run next door and use their hot tub before we start the midnight euchre tournament.

Super 8 Motel - Ann Arbor
2910 Jackson Avenue
I-94 exit 172 Jackson Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48103 US
Phone: 734-741-8888

That’s good news. And it looks like some did: