I am starting my own thread for this so hopefully it won’t interfere with the NAUCC thread and can only be a memory once addressed (self explanatory as you read on) my questions are with regard to the muni races for whoever can answer or might be familiar from this or past events.
I am going to prerequisite with…I hope I don’t offend anyone, especially the people hosting the NAUCC with the below questions/statements and I totally blame myself due to my lack of experience both regarding unicycle events and riding. I have never been to any type of unicycle event, so do not be offended, take these as questions of ignorance from complete inexperience and one who is trying to gain knowledge of this upcoming event to decide whether or not to attend.
Let me add I can see much hard work has been put into this event and it is very much appreciated as a unicyclist whether or not participating that the hosts have gone above and beyond to do so much in such a short amount of time to facilitate an event like this on the East Coast, so congratulations to all of you who have worked to do this, you should be proud and commended.
There seems to be a nice beginner muni course with plenty of room for a good group of riders, no seriously technical terrain, good planning, nice job.
Here is where my questions/statements might get me into hot water. :o I do not see any distinguishable difference between the intermediate and advanced muni courses. I honestly am disappointed not seeing a noteworthy difference. I was hoping to find a good “dividing course” for intermediate riders so I could plan this ride, yet my observation shows it to be in essence the same course as the advanced riders. The definition of intermediate is “half way”. Therefore, I was expecting the intermediate course would be half way between beginner and advanced skill level of riding. Yet,I only see what potentially might be a few more rock gardens and a slightly longer distance for the advanced course from what the intermediate course offers. My understanding of any type competitive event, each class distinguishes ability, it is the challenge that the class presents to the competitor, I don’t see the distinction between two classes of riders if they are riding over the same terrain, just slightly less of it, and in my flawed opinion it is or would be considered the same skill level of riding.
I’m concerned for a few reasons. With regard to myself, I am not an advanced rider, I have much to learn, (including how these events take shape) however I am not a beginner rider and find it unmerited if I enter as a beginner. I am that “half way” between beginner and advanced, thus should classify myself as intermediate. I am able to do some technical, but not as much of what is presented in the intermediate video. I find myself torn because although I may perhaps walk the rougher parts of the scheduled intermediate muni course, according to the IUF Rules I cannot pass a mounted rider which would probably put me in the back of the pack from the first rock garden to the end.
So to sum up, why is there no discernible difference between the intermediate and advanced course?
Another apprehension I have are some entrants going to enter the intermediate because they don’t want to be labeled as “beginner” only to wreak havoc on the more able riders when they attempt some parts of the trail that are too advanced for them, but egos and/ or similarity to my situation places them in the intermediate/advanced course so as not to label themselves “beginners”. Is chaos going to emerge on the trail.
With this in mind I would also like to ask if the intermediate course lends to the IUF Rules that state:
“When course building, it is important to imagine what it would be like for ten or more people to fight over it at top speed. Avoid trails that will not work for this, or plan for additional heats with smaller numbers of riders. Look for areas that will create bottlenecks, such as technical spots and uphill areas, and plan the course so these areas do not have too many riders at the same time.”
Seems like both the intermediate/advance courses encompass frequent bottlenecks, understandable for advanced riders, as I am certain advanced riders will excel at different phases of the course route and also have the experience to adapt. For intermediates; the construct doesn’t look as though it works with the IUF Rules from observing the video.
I am aware I could walk the more technical parts of the course, I recognize I could do the beginner course I don’t think that would be proper to participate as a beginner since I do have time in the saddle and ride more technical than what the beginner course offers again from my observation of the beginner videos, and I understand I should come for the fun of it but honestly if I’m walking every other quarter mile and not truly participating in the sport in the manor that I would like, it isn’t going to be fun. I certainly am able to afford to travel to the event and participate, but I cannot see spending my time there if I am walking much of a muni trail and going to feel defeated as it is the only event I would compete in, so you see my quandary.
This being said one more question is does the IUF Rules allow a contestant to enter both beginner and intermediate contests and if so how would that work as far as participation/placements.
I understand everyone’s excitement about this event, for myself being a “middle of the road rider”, I find I am on the fence with regard to attending, maybe it’s my own ego getting in the way, if so I’m sorry. I hope this post is taken in the context it is meant as does not cause insult to anyone, I merely have questions/concerns before making my decision. Thanks for any explanations/input, so I can make a judgment that I feel best for my situation. I’m reserving my decision for a few months and hope to have a better understanding. Thanks.