Sacramento Cross Series Drops USAC

by editors on May 18, 2017

In an open letter to their racers Sacramento Cyclocross Series Coordinators Clint and Jennifer Claassen outlined exactly why they won’t be running any USA Cycling sanctioned cyclocross events next year.

We’re sharing their open letter here because we know many cycling event promoters (from all disciplines) that are experiencing similar lack of flexibility issues with the USAC. If the goal of the USAC is to increase participation and promote racing it seems strange that they are making it so difficult for event promoters to help them with their mission.

Follow the jump for the whole letter:

May 17, 2017:

Dear SacCXers,

Last year we announced the Sacramento Cyclocross series would offer “split days” of both grassroots and USA Cycling sanctioned racing. As we explained at the time:

“SacCX has long been a grassroots series that encourages newcomers to come give it a try and discover what the sport has to offer… yet the greater Sacramento area is also home to many exceptionally gifted cyclocross racers who pour their hearts, souls, time, energy and talents into competing on the state, national, and even the international CX stage.”

We worked hard to create a schedule that accommodated both types of racers as National Championships in Reno approached, and considered the 2016 season a success:

  • It was the first time we had a presenting sponsor:
  • We had over 3,000 registered racers throughout the eight race series
  • 52.4% of those racers chose the “grassroots” morning races
  • 47.6% of those racers chose afternoon USA Cycling sanctioned races
  • We streamlined registration to comply with all USA Cycling requirements while remaining fast and flexible with race credit check-in

Sadly we had to pay over $6,000 to USA Cycling for insurance coverage that was redundant to what we already had, but it was a sacrifice we were willing to make to help our CX community have a strong, successful showing at National Championships in January 2018.

Unfortunately, USA Cycling has indicated they will not approve a “split day” permit for the upcoming 2017 season.

We were informed that we can either sanction the entire day through USA Cycling… or they will refuse to work with us at all. As much as we want support our racers who will be competitive at National Championships in Reno, we cannot afford to

  • Pay $12,000+ for insurance we don’t need
  • Spend $2,000+ for USA Cycling officials to rubber-stamp the quality results we already provide
  • Alienate half our racers who don’t want to pay $70 additional for an annual USA Cycling license
  • Add paperwork and a $10 one-day license fee to new racers who just want to give cyclocross a try

We have asked what specific concerns USA Cycling has so that we can address them. Other than being told that last year was a special test case, and in general it’s against their rules, they have not offered a path forward to compromise.

We are discouraged and frustrated about their lack of understanding to the realities we face. And honestly, we’re confused why they feel they have the power to dictate what we can and can’t do outside of USA Cycling permitted events! But given they will not approve a race flier similar to last year we have no choice but to move forward without their involvement.

We wanted to present this to our CX community to let you know where things stand. As always, we welcome your suggestions and feedback.


Clint and Jennifer Claassen
Sacramento Cyclocross Series Coordinators

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