Dec 16, 2010

Rule Changes

With all the chat/BS about the Cat1/2 rule change below, it struck me that I have no clear idea how rule changes are made in Little 500? In recent times these rules have been attempted/ succeeded-
1. Current Cat1/2 rule (allowing Hans to ride in 2006). As I recall this came from Riders Council (of which Hans was a member..nice work Sir!)
2. Alumni Coach rule (banning them and starting student coaches). This seemed to come from high up in IUF and was nothing to do with IUSF. Obviously it was withdrawn at the last minute leaving a significant amount of egg of IUSFs face.
3. Women's Gear Change rule (changes Women's gear to 46*20 instead of the Mens 46*18). Not sure where this came from but if I recall it was Rob Rhamys idea (then race director- although I may be wrong about that).

Therefore I don't really know how rules are changed and wonder whether there should be a defined method of changing rules. I'm sure plenty of people have insight on this topic so please discuss.


Anonymous said...

As much as I've enjoyed all 55 comments the previous post (see RC post from 12/10), let's not loose sight on the real issue. Before we discuss the merits or process of changing the Cat Rule (or any other rule) let’s make sure we are focusing on the correct rule. As it relates to Eric Young’s eligibility, many of you are focusing on the Cat. 1 rule vs. the professional status rule. These are two separate issues.

In regards to Eric's eligibility and how it relates to the Category rule - - he's free and clear. Eric is a perfect example of how that rule is designed to work. It allows novice cyclists, who use L5 as their starting point, to work their way through the USCF cycling ranks and still compete in L5. The rule is perfect - it in inhibits (already) elite level cyclists from participating in an intramural event and promotes the development of eligible riders. That's good for the riders and good for the race!

However - this is not the rule that Eric is allegedly "skirting". The issue with Eric is whether he has reached professional status. The eligibility rule is a two part analysis. The first having to do with Category restrictions (which has been discussed at some length on the blog recently and in the past). As mentioned above, Eric is completely within the category requirements.

The second part of the rule reads as follows:

"Any rider who is, or ever has been, classified under one or more of the following professional categorizations shall be deemed ineligible to ride in the Little 500.

1. Any rider who has held or obtained a professional status in any sport related to cycling or a sport that could be used as conditioning for cycling. A list of cycling related sports includes, but is not limited to, speed skating, mountain biking, and triathlons."

It is my understanding that Eric has signed a contract to ride with Team Bissell. It could be argued that the signing of a contract to ride for a professional cycling constitutes professional status. The obvious counterargument is that the contract doesn’t start until after the race and therefore he is not a professional until then. Nevertheless, putting pen to paper and executing a pro contract arguably makes one a professional. By way of example, would it be permissible for Maurice Creek to sign an NBA contract today even though the contract isn’t set to start until after he graduates. Obviously not the same rules and regulations, but the concept is the same.

Putting the contract start date argument aside, the next question to ask is whether or not he is receiving any benefit from Bissell? bikes? clothes? coaching? etc.?? If he has absolutely no contact with the team and is receiving no benefits than I suppose he hasn't "officially" reached professional status. However, if he is receiving ANYTHING from OR participating in ANY way then one could argue he's "reached professional status."

With all of that said, I honestly hope Eric rides. I don't want another team to win this thing without Eric on the track and then hear the Cutters complain about how IUSF and riders fought to get Eric kicked out just so they could stop the dynasty. I want Cutters firing on all pistons so that they don't have any excuse. Because let's all be honest - - Eric is a machine, but Clayton was the workhorse. Cutters will realize come race day how much they relied on Clayton.

The point of this post is to point out the real issues with the rule – not the perceived issue with the Cat 1 & 2 rule. So, if you want Eric out of the race, at least focus on the appropriate aspect of the professional status rule. That being said, someone else will need to take up the fight because my team and I will be out busting our ass preparing to dominate an extremely vulnerable 2011 Cutter team!!

Anonymous said...

Everyone just wants everyone to race. No one is trying to say Eric young can't race. It just isn't fair to say that he as a cat 1 who is categorically ranked better then the those who are cat 2's but can't race. Change the fraternity is going to start recruiting again Little 500 is awesome but no Fraternity these days is willing to "recruit"

Tom said...

Two of these rules were basically people wanting to leave their "mark" on the Little 500, the exception is the Cat2 rule. I provided a link to a long explanation of the history of the Cat2 two rule in another post. The other two were Rhamy and Purvis deciding they knew best and had the power to make changes.

There was no valid reason to change the women's gear and IUSF was buried in an avalanche of criticism and scientific data to refute every "claim" that IUSF made regarding the change. One letter was from Allan Lim of the RadioShack team. It was finally uncovered that the “testing” that IUSF claimed was performed regarding the gear change was never done and the results were fabricated. IUSF backed off this change after that was exposed.

The alumni coaching rule, as far as I could determine, as there is no record of how this was sold to IUF by Purvis, was Purvis getting tired of having alumni coaches refuting his numerous claims to riders that “This is the way things have always been.” He found 2 out of roughly 20 coaches who felt that completely removing alumni coaches from the race was a great idea and he went from there. There were no discussions with riders or coaches before the rule was enacted, about 3 weeks after everyone left town for the summer in 2006, IUF President sent out a letter regarding the rule.

There is a record of Purvis making false claims regarding the actions of the alumni coaches commenting that sooner or later every alumni coach will be “just like Courtney Bishop”. IUSF & IUF refused to have any relevant discussion regarding the rule. GP you were in the room for the first and last Alumni Coaching Advisory Meeting so you know what a farce that was. In the end, nothing that IUSF was supposed to provide the teams as a result of the rule was provided, but the teams had to find a student coach, make them attend classes and be subject to grade restrictions same as the riders. There were three teams in the men’s race last year who had student coaches who not undergraduates, not taken that class and hence were in violation of the rule, none of these teams received penalities for this rule infraction.

Much of this was the result of the constant change in the staff at IUSF. In the last 12 years there have been over 7 Directors and even more Asst. Directors. Fortunately that trend is no longer the case.

As of now there is no formal body that is charged with reviewing the rules, in the 70’s IUSF had a Rules & Regulations committee of students (many of them riders) that looked at the rules every year. It was that committee that instituted the “Black Flag” rule at quals in 1973. Around 1985 Riders Council suggested that each team get to pick their pit based on where they qualified, as they do at the Indy 500. That was finally adopted in 1991.

Tom said...

"It is my understanding that Eric has signed a contract to ride with Team Bissell."

I believe that you are incorrect. The Cutters know that this would immediately take Eric out of the race. and if anyone knows the rules, it's the Cutters.

Anonymous said...

If I've learned anything from my political days it's this...the people that are doing the talking don't know, and the people that know aren't doing the talking.

Just a few words of wisdom for you young pups out there. Be very careful taking Tom's word as law. He likes to pontificate like he is all knowing, but is often times unaware to the major players and the real pezzonovante that hold the puppet strings. Do you really think Rhamy and Purvis were making the puppet dance?

Keeping this in mind - I look forward to continued comments from Tom and others.

Anonymous said...

If youre so smart, tell us what you know, and put your name to it, anonymity provies you cover but no credibility.

Tom said...

Feel free to enlighten us.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...

If youre so smart, tell us what you know, and put your name to it, anonymity provies you cover but no credibility."

Says the anonymous poster?!

The internet is not the forum for such discussions. Give me a call and we'll grab a beer sometime.

Anonymous said...

"1. Current Cat1/2 rule (allowing Hans to ride in 2006). As I recall this came from Riders Council (of which Hans was a member..nice work Sir!"

Geraint, I know you like to stir the pot, but the cat1/2 rule change that was passed by the 2005/06 RC committee was discussed and proposed by IUSF and RC the prior year (2004/05 RC). Hans upgraded to Cat 2 in the summer after the 2005 race, understanding that he would not be eligible to ride in 2006. He applied for and was elected to the RC committee during the beginning of the 2005 school year knowing he was ineligible for the race, but joined bc he was passionate about the race and wanted to stay involved with the Little 500. The rule change was passed by RC in 2005/06 by a vast majority. Obviously it did work out for him and he fell within the new rule structure and was able to ride in 2006. It was by no means changed just for him.

Anonymous said...

I was on RC in 2003 and we had a discussion on the gear change. Alex was race director and Rob wasn't even on staff.

Anonymous said...

While all are invited to parse the details of the 'Cat 2 rule' (and some undoubtedly will).

Its worth simply asking ourselves what the intent of the rule was and if it achieved its (stated?!) purpose.

For many of us veterans of Little 500, the 80s was often viewed as the high water mark of the race. (Cat 2s were a common sight on the track throughout the decade).

Teams vied to be the unquestioned _best_ on campus. Nary was heard a quibble about not wanting to race because some other team had a "ringer" who was a Category 2.

Is the race better served banning Category 2 riders? (I think not). If so, why?


Geraint Parry said...

The fact is that Hans was able to vote for a rule that hugely benefited ATO. Anyway the point was to figure out WHAT the process is for rule changes?

More importantly, the Anonymous poster who wrote the word 'pezzonovante' needs to be banned. That's way too intellectual for BVN.

Anonymous said...

rule changes start with RC or IUSF. One approaches the other and then a discussion about the rule should occur. Or IUSF just implements a rule without querying the RC, hah.

Kushnick said...

It is true that Hans participated in the discussion on the Cat 1/2 Rule change, but if I recall correctly he left the room for the vote. Maybe someone else who was also there can verify this. I know Lucas in retrospect wished that Hans had not taken part in the discussion at all, but I do not think that it influenced the decision anyways.

Further, I also believe that Hans was not the only one that benefited from the rule change that year. I am pretty sure there was a woman rider who was granted eligibility based on the rule.

Anonymous said...

The women's gear got blown up because it was a slap in the face to gender equality in many opinions. There was talk of changing it because men have stronger legs on average and they spin at 110 for example while the women are only spinning on average 90 rpms (example). I think they wanted to get the spin on par with the men. Well, the top woman who could beat over half the men led the charge along with Tom to make sure it did not get changed.

Do the top women in track racing automatically ride the same gear ratio as the top men? Doubtful. And in terms of equality, why not ask for a 200 lap race?

I think 46-20 was too small. If they could have gotten somewhere in the middle it might have been better but I also don't think there was anything truly wrong with the 46-18 as it's not a huge gear that women can't push,effectively like a 53-12 might be.

As far as retroactive rules go, I hate them. Any new rules should never be made to benefit someone who already skated that rule ala Hans. He was directly involved and was the only rider affected. Now you have Young who stayed within the rules and followed them to a T, and you have people complaining that 2 people that catted up early should be able to ride even though they knew last year was their last year of eligibility.

Either get rid of the rule completely, or follow the rules and make any changes the year after a problem comes up.

Don't just allow people to ride because "it's not fair" that they can't ride but a cat 1 can ride. They knew the consequences of their actions so there should be no way to change that.

Osterman said...

OK, I'm going to try and steer clear of a lot of the personalized arguments here, but I will address comparing Maurice Creek to Eric Young, which is rather silly. Creek plays under one gigantic bureaucracy, fraught with arcane rules and intentionally vague decision-making processes. Transitioning from a college sport into a clearly defined professional organization is not in any way the same as working under IUSF rules related to Little 5.

One of the things I've always enjoyed about IUSF, throughout my time dealing with them, is how simple the process was. If you wanted to challenge a rule, any rule, you took you case to a board, and they made what, in my five-plus years, were usually reasoned and mostly fair decisions. Sometimes I agreed, sometimes I didn't, but I never felt like anybody was really getting screwed.

You say the concept is the same, but no, it isn't, because it can't be, when you're working with two completely different governing entities. If Young has signed a professional contract and it doesn't start until after the race, then I've seen others take equally creative steps to get to race one more time. There was nothing wrong with it then, and I don't think there's anything wrong with it now. It's always been my opinion that the race should be as inclusive as possible, and Young especially deserves this consideration because he is a perfect example of the kind of rider that this rule change was thinking about when it was considered.

The Creek comparison just doesn't hold up. There's no way it can.

Graham said...

To clarify things, I upgraded two years ago when I hadn't even watched the Little 500.. or even realized that I was going to be going to school at IU. After seeing Little 500 It's fair to say that upgrading was a big mistake.Regardless of cat 1 or 2, I think you should be able to ride in this race as long as you are taking enough credits to be a legitimate student.I find it puzzling that I am going to be watching Eric Young (who is clearly a better rider) race, while I can't. This argument has nothing to do with the cutters because they have done nothing wrong..its intended at the rule. I'm not asking to race.. I have already talked to Pam in the Fall and she has respectfully discussed the issue with me. If the rule is to be changed it will happen because people actually see the gray area it creates. I love cycling and no matter what I will have a blast being a spectator for the next 4..perhaps 5 years that I will be a student here. I look forward to riding and meeting more people as the temperature warms, and hope this discussion will continue.

-Graham Dewart

PS: Whoever posts under TFM, Frat..etc. please stop. Your part of the reason why greek life gets a bad image.

Anonymous said...


I hear you. If you knew the rule and upgraded anyway, then I'd say too bad. But if you didn't know anything and just aren't allowed to ride because you upgraded earlier in life then that is a legitmate complaint and goes back to the recruiting riders in the 1970's excuse from IUSF.

Lets look at what it does to participation when Cat 1's race. It does nothing!!! The lower tier teams still get their asses handed to them by 20+ laps when it's just cat 3's. Now when it's just one team sucking in all the cat 1's and 2's then it might cause serious problems.
So make the rule just one cat 1-2 rider per team is allowed unless they started as a cat 5 and moved up. That keeps dynasties from forming (besides Cutters) and too many good riders jumping Miami Heat style into the race on the same team. So you can still have 4 cat 1-2 riders on your team but 3 of them started as beginners. Now this would rarely if ever happen anyway, but it's more fair then what is happening now.

Anonymous said...

"As far as retroactive rules go, I hate them. Any new rules should never be made to benefit someone who already skated that rule ala Hans."

How is it really a retroactive rule? He fit the criteria of the rule the year that it was implemented.. Why argue that the rule goes into affect another year later? The timing just so happened that it worked for him. The changes were discussed for many years prior.

For example, if you want to argue that all Cat 1/2 riders are allowed in the race (which I think is a good argument and rule change) and the rule gets passed before the 2011 race wouldn't you implement it now and allow riders who fit that criteria to ride this year? Why not? Once it is passed it should apply.

Rules are not made to benefit one person.. seriously.

Anonymous said...

No, you don't make a new playoff rule for overtime in the NFL 3 weeks before the playoffs begin. And you don't sit in a meeting about a rule change that affects you only that year if you don't want anyone being a bit presumptuous as to what's in it for him. The rule was talked about every year for the last 20 years. It wasn't something that just popped up a year or 2 before Hans became ineligible.

I'm glad he rode and won because it was something else to watch and it's a great part of history. But changing the rules a month or 2 before the race is not how things should be done because it looks like they are changing them to accomodate just a couple of people that year.

For example, IUSF made a rule to kick off a Cutter rider a week or two before the race because they instated a new rule about Pro mountain bikers not being able to ride. Is that fair to his team that followed the rules? This is the same thing but in favor of riders becoming eligible. Any rule changes that are made should be done before raceday 2011 to be included in the following 2012 rulebook to avoid looking like a bias organization.

In this case, the rule would again go against the Cutters as they followed the rules to get a Cat 1 in and another team didn't. Cutters wouldn't care because they know they still have far and away the best rider, but it still gives them a disadvantage due to a rule that just popped up before the race started to make it harder for them to win AGAIN!

Anonymous said...

I agree with your comment about having the rule in the rulebook; yes, it should be made before the rulebook gets printed. But in Little 5 there is no "season". Maybe the spring series events, but that's about it. Are you implying that all rule changes should be made in the summer? I think if RC/IUSF changes a rule before the rulebook is printed than that is fair.

Anonymous said...

Curious..who was the pro mt. biker from cutters that was kicked out? What year was it?

Tom said...

Hans upgraded before the rule was changed, not after.

Art Keith was the Cutter mentioned above. It was in 1994. The cutters took IUSF to court. And the ruling was against the Cutters cam the morning of the Women's race in 1994.

adamrodkey said...

(I didn't read all of this) But if young doesn't (or didn't) sign a pro contract in order to remain L5 eligible, that dude is dedicated (and perhaps mental).

Anonymous said...

Cutters get booed off the track every year. Enough said. Let them keep doing their thing. I plan on putting on a show.

Thug Life.

Anonymous said...

so why is it that Ren-Jay can't ride!? I don't think he was Cat 2 in high school like Graham? I bet it's because if Ren-Jay was allowed to race he would drop bombs on your moms---the boy be off the chain.....

Anonymous said...

Eric Young is a cheater. I hope someone takes out their team this year. Nobody at the track likes them. God says go cutters? Why did god make them get trucked by a car on 446?

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...
Eric Young is a cheater. I hope someone takes out their team this year. Nobody at the track likes them. God says go cutters? Why did god make them get trucked by a car on 446?"

That's a tall order to say everything you just said. I'd like to go ahed and break down that idiotic post you just made.
1. "Eric Young is a cheater" - evidence for this? All Eric Young does is ride his bike faster than everyone else on the track. The man is one of the most dedicated and honest people I've ever met.
2. "I hope someone takes out their team this year" - With all due respect (which is none) I hope someone takes YOU out this year (though you'll probably take yourself out, being that the odds are high that you are sitting somewhere in the last row this year).
3. "Nobody at the track likes them" - that's just not true. period. I know PLENTY of people that like them. I'm at the track, and I like them. Therefore, your statement is untrue. How dare you speak for everyone.
4. "God says go cutters?" - I'd like to point out that it's safe to assume that you probably don't even know the origin of this.... watch Freewheels or read a book on the Little 500. You'll see where it came from.
5. "Why did god make them get trucked by a car on 446?" - Now I know you're a moron (as if I was questioning this before.... I wasn't at all)... All I have to say to this is that if you believe 'god' has a hand in everything, 'god' 'made' them survive, with MINIMAL injuries. By your logic, 'God' really does say "Go Cutters".

adamrodkey said...

"Anonymous said...
Eric Young is a cheater. I hope someone takes out their team this year. Nobody at the track likes them. God says go cutters? Why did god make them get trucked by a car on 446?"

Holy crappers! Anonymous has some BIG OL BALLZ!

Anonymous said...

Why even respond to a post like that. GP should just delete those.

Anonymous said...

No Adam. If he had "BIG OL BALLZ" he wouldn't have posted as "Anonymous".

No that "person" is merely a sick human that wants to stir the pot.

There was nothing that wasn't disgusting about that post. (its a hope I have that we're a better group than that).


Lusk said...

I'll expand on the anonymous post from above:
Come talk to our team and you will find out that we are a good group of guys. Are we hated because of past success? If so that's a terrible reason to "hate" someone. This is a new year and a totally different team as it is every year. If we did something other than the race to be hated than fine but I think its fair to say that we respect everyone out on the track and expect to be treated with that same respect. Has stuff been said before, sure, but in all fairness its been about making Little 5 faster, safer, and more enjoyable; no one likes idiots on the track causing accidents. We have a passion for this race along with many other teams and they're probably not the ones posting ridiculous comments on here anyways wasting their time. In regards to Eric Young being a cheater you are totally out of line to say that. The man took an entire summer off in order to be able to race Little 5 his senior year sticking by the rules to a T. That's dedication to his passion for Little 5 and his teammates. He doesn't go out drinking and stretches more than a gymnast trying to get better everyday. He is also one of the nicest guys I've ever met and I'm glad I've had the pleasure to ride/become great friends with him. I encourage you again to take a stroll over to the Cutters pit one day and get to know us then maybe you can change your clouded perception of our team. For you to wish injury on anyone is inhumane and for this I'm sure "God" will seek his revenge on you for wishing such a terrible act onto someone. Put your name up on the board next time you want to talk shit too so you can allow everyone to see how ignorant you really are. Happy Holidays everyone; safe travels as well.

JB said...

"More importantly, the Anonymous poster who wrote the word 'pezzonovante' needs to be banned. That's way too intellectual for BVN."

That was a typical Courtney Bishop "drive-by" posting by the “master” himself…Courtney Bishop. Who else would caution "young pups" not to listen to someone who was present at the events being discussed? His record of duplicity is well documented; from lying about Josh Weir’s status to the current court case pending against him by the heirs of Major Taylor.

alley fruit said...

Jim said...

Graham, you will get my support/vote allowing you to ride Little 500. I have always been for removing restrictions and allowing any undergraduate passing 12 credit hours to ride. The race needs stars!


PS. You are not a pro until you hold a USCF license. You are not a pro just because you get a free jersey or a bike. If that were the case then teams like Wing It would be in question.

Neil said...

The Cutters have my respect. I saw 4 of them riding outside in the 20 degree weather last week. That's dedication and love for the sport.

Anonymous said...

Im sure they were the only team out riding... Im sure. Im sure.

Anonymous said...

Wow! This much passion is great for cycling. Makes for some entertaining reading and I'm sure makes everyone involved ride just a little harder. Well done GP!

Anonymous said...

Riding outside in 20 degree weather isn't dedication ... It's just not being a pussy. We are in INDIANA. It's just the nature of training in the winter here. If you want to win you will train however you are able. I've seen Delts, Cutters, and even Hoosier Climber outdoors these past few weeks, but again its not bragging worthy, its just the NORM for competitive athletes.

Anonymous said...

Wait til April 16th and we'll see who's been training whether it be inside or out and until then it doesn't really matter

Anonymous said...

with the same sword they night you
they gonna good night you with
shit, that's only half what they might do
that's only the half if they like you
don't believe me? ask michael
see martin see malcom
see biggy see pac see success and its outcome
see caesar see brutus
see jesus see judas see success is like suicide
suicide it's a suicide
if you succeed prepare to be crucified
media mettles
niggaz sue you, you settle
every step you take they remind you they ghetto
But the question is: is to have had and lost
better than to not have had it at all?

Pacifist said...

Lusk is the only current cutter who posts on here with regularity. My guess is he has something to prove.

For the record I spoke with Young and Kirkham at the track the past 2 years and they are nice guys, as stated previously many times. Maybe 'Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dumb' are just shy, and I'll give them the benefit of the doubt that they are. I won't comment on ex-team members.

All that being said, I found that the environment on the track is very friendly and outgoing. Perhaps if the cutters riders struck up a conversation with another team while they are doing their cool-down around the track they would get a better reputation, and have less people who insult them. Then again, if they don't care about being disliked, or use it as motivation, so be it.

Just a thought.

Pacifist said...

Also, not trying to stir the pot, but I heard David Ellis played semi-pro hockey for a year before his freshman year (which would explain a lot). Can anyone dispel that rumor or shed any light on it?

Anonymous said...

Why does it matter if he played Hockey for Carmel High School Semi Pro league or not?

Anonymous said...

Pacifist might be referring to the rule which states that a little 5 rider can not have held a position at the "pro" level in sports which muscular demands mimic that of cycling, such as speed skating, running, etc. Semi pro isn't pro, and a pro in ice hockey would be a stretch for ineligibility in my book.

Anonymous said...

isn't there the same rule for IU varsity sports, and wasn't paul from cutters a a few back swimmer?

Let all IU students ride, makes for a better race. is there going to be an appeal this year from any that are ineligble as of now?

Anonymous said...

Whats the verdict? Has Pam Loebig seen this thread? Is any action going to be taken? It is still unclear on how to go about to change the rule

Anonymous said...

The rule changes don't necessarily start with Pam. Start with the RC exec board and then they can bring up the discussion amongst the RC group and Pam.

Anonymous said...

Everyone rides!

Anonymous said...

I know for a fact that the first thing Pam does when she wakes up EVERY morning is check BVN. I always thought it was weird but she does like to keep her finger on the pulse.