2014 Pro Cycling Calendar
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UCI Calendar explained
The UCI has several calenders World Tour and then Africa, America, Asia, Europe and Oceania Tours. Each race is listed with its location and UCI status as a suffix:
- (WT) means World Tour and includes all the prime races on the calendar, from the three grand tours (Giro d’Italia, Tour de France, Vuelta a Espana) to the one day classics like Paris-Roubaix, the Tour of Flanders and Il Lombardia, as well as others like the Tour of Poland or the Tour Down Under and can be anywhere in the world. All 18 UCI Pro Teams must ride plus organisers may invite UCI Pro Continental Teams.
After this come races in different races that are grouped by region, with the UCI Asia Tour, UCI America Tour, UCI Africa Tour and UCI Oceania Tour and UCI Europe Tour. The bulk of races on the calendar above are in Europe with races like the Het Nieuwsblad, the Criterium International or the Tour of Denmark but we also find races like the Tour of California and the Tour de Langkawi.
- (HC) is the next level down and up to 70% of the teams may come from the UCI Pro Teams but UCI Pro Continental and UCI Continental teams can be invited
- (.1) is another step down where up to 50% of the teams can be UCI Pro Team with the rest from Pro Continental, Continental and also national teams
- There is also (.2) but I’ve excluded these races to keep the calendar concise and focus on the top pro races around the world
- Note 1.HC and 1.1 denotes a one day race and 2.HC or 2.1 means a stage race
- Women’s races are W1.1 and the biggest races are the Women’s World Cup with the W.WC label
These classes affect the points awarded to riders. Confusingly there are different points awarded according to the calendar of races.
World Tour points scale
The World Tour is separate and riders on World Tour squads earn points on the following basis:
|Tour de France||Giro & Vuelta||Stage Races and One Day Monuments*||One Day Races**|
|*||Tour Down Under, Paris-Nice, Tirreno Adriatico, Milan-Sanremo, Tour of Flanders, Tour of Basque Country, Paris-Roubaix, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Tour de Romandie, Tour of Catalonia, Dauphiné, Tour de Suisse, Tour of Poland, Eneco Tour, Il Lombardia, Tour of Beijing|
|**||E3 Prijs Harelbeke, Gent-Wevelgem, Amstel Gold Race, Flèche Wallonne, Classica San Sebastian, Vattenfall Cyclassics, GP Plouay, GP Québec, GP Montreal|
Note points are not awarded for wearing a leaders jersey each day in a stage race, only the final overall position counts. And eyebrows may rise when a win in the Tour Down Under or Tour of Beijing brings in as many points as a win in Paris-Roubaix or Liège-Bastogne-Liège. But there’s no debate, the arithmetic is black and white.
HC, 1, 2 points scale
For HC, Class 1 and Class 2 races outside of the World Tour, the following points scale applies.
|Olympics & Worlds||HC||Class 1||Class 2|
|Overall leader||per day||10||8||4|
If you’ve made it this far then note there are other rankings, such as Cycling Quotient.
In fact the UCI itself uses an additional internal scoring system to rank riders. Because the World Tour and regional tours have different points scales this hidden system is used to score riders so that the teams can be assessed for the “sporting value” element of the World Tour selection criteria for promotion and relegation.
Finally the sport is not about leagues and rankings. The points system is a powerful driver of rider wages and race tactics to the point where UCI points are almost the coin of the realm. It’s a subject that crops up regularly on the blog. Despite all this the essence of sport is crossing the finish line first.