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Competitive classes are denoted by a distance and a type. Scores are calculated in each class according to the continental formula, the key elements of which are minimum speed for the class, actual average speed and final heart rate in bpm. The rider is aiming to have the lowest final heart rate and the highest average speed within any speed restrictions for the class.
The competitive classes on offer will vary by ride according to the distances that can be offered. Nominal distances are 20 miles, 30 miles, 40 miles and 50 miles, but the actual distances will be announced at or before the ride and may be plus or minus 10%. In order to ride distances greater than 30 miles, riders must have the correct grade (see section on grading).
The distance will have a suffix denoting the type of class.
NS & RS – Speed parameters 5mph to 8mph
LS – Speed parameters 6mph to 10 mph
FS – Speed parameters 6mph with no maximum limit
Combinations finishing outside these parameters will be eliminated.
You must be a Competitive member to be able to enter any competitive class of 20 miles plus. That means all classes except NS
The following types of class may be offered:
Next Step (NS) class – This class is designed to “have ago” at endurance and any pleasure rider who has not competed in a 20 mile ride with any society may enter this class. The distance is nominally 15 miles and it has lower speed parameters – minimum 5mph and maximum 8 mph. The idea is to give riders a flavour of what competing is all about. You can only ride this class 3 times. Try this a class for a few times and then upgrade to Competitive membership or stay as a Pleasure rider
Restricted Speed (RS) – This is a 15 mile class but the speed is reduced compared to the LS class. The speed parameters are minimum 5mph and maximum 8mph. This class is open to any Competitive member and can be ridden any number of times, but the results will not count towards any level qualification or upgrade.
Limited Speed (LS) – this class will be offered at all available distances and limits the speed to 10mph. Combinations averaging above this speed will be eliminated.
Free Speed (FS) – This class has no maximum speed, but combinations must be qualified to enter this type of class (see section on grading)
Endurance Ride (ER) – this class is similar to Free Speed but the places are determined not by the continental formula but by the order of crossing the finish line.