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Virtual Directeur Sportif 2009: The Races!

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Vds2_mediumUrsula and I have been tinkering with the schedule a bit, and at his prompting I've come up with a slight adjustment: going large! No, we will not be adding every race from the CQ calendar. I wouldn't know where to find Coupe de France results (and believe me, I tried last year). But I propose the following changes:

Relegations and subtractions:

  • Volta a Catalunya (from category 3 to 5)
  • DeutschlandTour (out)
  • Olympics (out, duh)

Promotions:

  • Vattenfalls (promoted to cat 4)
  • Giro dell'Emilia (promoted to cat 4)

Additions:

  • Tour of Poland (cat 5)
  • Vuelta a Murcia (cat 5)
  • Vuelta a Castilla y Leon (cat 5)
  • Klasika Primavera (cat 4)
  • GP Miguel Indurain (cat 5)
  • Tour of Poland (cat 5)
  • Tour de Georgia (cat 5)
  • Monte Paschi Erioca (5)
  • Coppa Sabatini (cat 4)
  • Sochi Tour (cat 5)
  • Rund um den Henninger Turm (cat 5)
  • Ster Elektroer (cat 5)
  • National Championships (bonus points only)
  • Tour du Limousin (cat 5)
  • Giro del Lazio (cat 5)

The basic idea is, with more races available, more riders on your roster become important, which simply makes the competition more interesting. As long as these lesser events are only worth a limited number of points, it shouldn't upset the rankings. More rationale and discussion on the flip. And I need your input here.

First, let's quickly review the categories. I will only include the final standings points so you get a relative sense:

Cat 1: Grand Tours... final GC (top 20): 600-450-375-325-300; 275-250-225-200-175; 150-135-120-105-90; 75-60-45-30-15 [and several other point categories]

Cat 2: Monuments...final Results (top 20): 350-300-275-250-225; 200-175-150-125-100; 90-80-70-60-50; 40-30-20-10-5

Cat 3: Top Stage Races... final GC (top 10): 250-180-150-125-100; 80-60-40-20-10 [plus other points categories]

Cat 4: Top Classics... final Results (top 15): 250-200-180-160-140; 120-100-90-80-70; 60-50-40-30-15

Cat 5: Best of the Rest... final Results (top 10): 150-125-100-80-60; 50-40-30-20-10, plus stage win points where applicable.

So, here's a look at the full calendar for 2009, per my proposal:

February

28 Het Volk (4)

March
1 Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne (5)
4-8 Vuelta a Murcia (5)
7 Monte Paschi Eroica (5)
8-15 Paris-Nice (3)
11-17 Tirreno-Adriatico (3)
21 Milan-San Remo (2)
23-27 Vuelta a Castilla y Leon (5)
25 Dwars door Vlaanderen (5)
28 E3 Prijs Vlaanderen (4)
28-29 Critérium International (5)
29 Brabantse Pijl (5)
31-2 April Dreidaagse de Panne (5)

April

4 GP Miguel Indurain (5)
5 Tour of Flanders (2)
6-11 Vuelta Ciclista a Pais Vasco (3)
8 Gent-Wevelegem (4)
12 Paris-Roubaix (2)
12 Klasika Primavera (4)
15 Scheldeprijs (5)
19 Amstel Gold Race (4)
22-26 Tour of Sochi (5)
20-26 Tour de Georgia (5)
22 La Flèche Wallonne (4)
26 Liège-Bastogne-Liège (2)
28-3May Tour de Romandie (3)

May

1 Rund um den Henninger Turm (5)
9-31Jun Giro d'Italia (1)
19-25 Volta a Catalunya (5)

June

7-14 Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré (3)
13-21 Tour de Suisse (3)
17-21 Ster Elektroer (5)
22-28 National Championships (bonus)

July

5-27 Tour de France (1)

August

1 Clasica San Sebastian (4)
2-8 Tour of Poland (5)
16 Vattenfalls Classic (4)
18-21 Tour du Limousin (5)
23 GP Ouest France-Plouay (4)
29-20 Sept Vuelta a Espana (1)

September

23 World Champs Time Trial (4)
26 World Champs Road Race (4)

October

4 Giro del Lazio (5)
8 Coppa Sabatini (5)
10 Giro dell'Emilia (4)
11 Paris-Tours (4)
17 Giro di Lombardia (2)

Races by category:

Cat 1 and Cat 2: GTs and monuments

Cat 3: Paris-Nice, Tirreno-Adriatico, Vuelta a Pais Vasco, Tour de Romandie, Dauphine Libere, Tour de Suisse

Cat 4: Het Volk, E3 Prijs, Gent-Wevelgem, Klasika Primavera (5?), Amstel Gold, Fleche Wallonne, San Sebastian, Vattenfalls, Plouay, Worlds, Emilia, Paris-Tours

Cat 5: KBK, Murcia, Dwars door Vlaanderen, Criterium International, Castilla y Leon, Brabantse Pijl, Monte Paschi Eroica, Dreidaagse de Panne, GP Miguel Indurain, Scheldeprijs, Sochi Tour, Tour de Georgia, Henninger Turm, Catalunya, Ster Elektroer, Tour of Poland, Tour du Limousin, Giro del Lazio, Coppa Sabatini

Bonus: National championships, 100 points to any rider who wins a national championship road race or time trial. No other points.

A few additional thoughts:

Cats 1-4 look much like they did last year, so if the mass expansion of cat-5 looks bizarre, one solution is to lower the points available. However, I do like making these races worthwhile to the VDS.

The Tour du Limousin is kind of a placeholder. I would like to add a little more French racing, and this seems like perhaps the next best event, but am open to other ideas.

I tossed in Georgia, it's time we had an American race, and I remain opposed to the Tour of California for oft-cited logistical reasons. Update: I'm an idiot.

I'm not thrilled at the overload in March, but what can you do?

Ursula, don't freak out. OK, what say ye? I'd like to finalize the calendar by the middle of next week. Thanks.