Scoring and points can be a little complicated depending on what you’re trying to score and who is doing the calculations, but we’ll try to keep it simple for beginners. When it comes down to it, you can compete against yourself, your friends or the entire world.
Races are scored in several ways:
- For each individual event
- Across the Wisconsin series
- Across all races throughout North America (either permitted through USA Cycling (USAC) and its partners OR races tracked through CrossResults)
- And across the world (through the UCI)
For the purposes of the Wisconsin CX Series, the amount of points you get depends on the position you finish within your category. The more points you have, the better you’re doing.
In larger views (regional, national and beyond) the calculations change, and the amount of points you receive depends on where you finish, the number of participants in a race, and the competitive level of the participants. Here the numbers invert and the fewer points you have, the better you’re doing.
There are also upgrade points, which are completely separate. You can cash in your upgrade points to advance to higher level categories and race tougher competition.
Race day results
Day-of race results are posted as they are calculated, and posted after each race near registration. At the end of the day they are ultimately submitted to USAC and can subsequently be tracked via CrossResults. Results should be confirmed and disputes should be resolved before you leave the premises, but if you still need to register a complaint, please email us.
How important are points?
Null: This is most of us. If the podium is not your concern, and you are planning on racing for personal reasons, such as for fun, fitness, or personal challenge, you can stop reading here. You don’t need to worry about any points.
Low: If you are planning on racing fewer than 5 races this season, you probably don’t need to worry about series points, unless you start getting on the podium.
Medium: If you plan on participating in many events, want to get on the podium and win prizes, or want to advance to a tougher category, you may want to think about points. The lower your placement at the finish line is, the higher your score will go. With a higher score, you get a better call-up (starting position) for the next race.
High: If you want to earn swag and a series jersey that proves you are a top racer in your category at the end of the season, or race at Nationals to have a shot at proving you are a top racer in the country, you will need to think about points.
Series points – How are Wisconsin Series cyclocross races scored?
Overall leaders are scored for each race with a separate start time.
The series’ overall leaders will be determined by your best [n] races for the year where [n] is roughly 80% of total series races, excluding the State Championships race and other non-series races (even inf they’re based in Wisconsin), like Trek CX Cup.
To be eligible for the overall competition, riders must participate in a MINIMUM of [n] series races where [n] = roughly 33% of series races.
Sample participation chart
|Number of series races|
|Min. participation for scoring|
(33% rounded down)
|Total races scored|
(80% rounded down)
Series winners will be awarded a champion’s jersey and some higher tier races may qualify for prize money. Your details will be distributed at the close of the series.
The Wisconsin CX Series overall standings can be tracked on CrossResults.
The most up-to-date, official information regarding scoring can be found in the Wisconsin Cyclocross Racers’ Guidelines.
Overall points – Scoring beyond Wisconsin
Overall points are calculated in a somewhat esoteric manner by 2 different bodies. Both of these calculations can be used to position you against the entire world of cyclocross, all the way to Mathieu van der Poel the top. Cool! (But perhaps overkill.)
USA Cycling (USAC) is our official governing body and they provide permits and insurance for all our races. They take into consideration: your best 5 races, the field size, and the field quality (based on the 5 best riders from the top 10 finishers).
CrossResults glibly uses a different calculation: “an exciting combination of voodoo, internets, and linear interpolation.”
So who’s points are the most correct?
It depends on what your needs are. Because nobody raced in 2020, USAC ended up resetting all series points to 0. USAC also seems to have imploded through COVID, and their website has historically been very disorganized and prone to bugs; it can be a frustrating experience (though it has been getting better over the last few years).
CrossResults, on the other hand, seems to be humming along efficiently and they simply transferred their pre-COVID season points towards future seasons.
As a result, most participants seem to follow their scores (and their competition) via CrossResults and, as such, the WCA decided to use those same results to determine call-up positions, and track the overall going forward.
How call-ups work
Call-ups help organize riders at the start line based on past performance. Like Category separations, this ensures a more even level of competition within the race. The better your standing, the better your call-up will be.
If this is your first race, you don’t need to worry about call-ups. Just show up to your race about 10 minutes early and slot into the back of the start gate when your name is called.
Call-ups for the opening day of racing will be based off of CrossResults overall points. In subsequent races:
- The first 5 call-ups are based on the previous years’ series standings. Riders must be pre-registered.
- Next call-ups are based on CrossResults overall points for pre-registered riders.
- The last round of call-ups are based on CrossResults overall points for day-of registrants.
Upgrade points – Advancing through categories
USAC upgrade points are awarded in all qualifying races (where field sizes are large enough, etc.)
Upgrade Points are used to help you advance through the race categories and get you into stronger fields for better and fairer competition. Upgrade points are based on field size and your finishing position. The bigger the field, the more upgrade points are available to lower positions.
USAC does not seem to list your upgrade points anywhere. However, you can see a close approximation to your Upgrade Points on your CrossResults profile (scroll down and click Show Upgrade Points), though they also include unsanctioned or unofficial races, so they may be on the high side. If you’ve only raced in sanctioned events, it should be fairly accurate. If you’ve got 10 points in the last 12 months, you’re due for an upgrade. If you’ve got 10 in the last 36 months, you can choose to wait, if you want.
How to upgrade
If you believe you qualify for an upgrade, you have to manually request an upgrade through USAC:
Instructions on how to request an upgrade: https://usacycling.org/resources/upgrades
USAC’s Upgrade Points rubric: https://usacycling.org/about-us/governance/policy-viii#cxupgrades
If that doesn’t work, let us know.
Normally upgrade requests are pretty lenient (if you wanna race harder races, hey, it’s your funeral). Downgrade requests are more closely scrutinized.