A USACycling Local Association-fostering the development of racing cyclists and promoting participation in Idaho, National and International Bike Racing  | SWICA is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Become a Bike Racer

How do I start racing?

Getting started in racing is easier than you think.  In fact it's simple.  

Besides your equipment all you need to do is find and show up at a race and pay the entry fee.  New bike racers are always welcome.  

Don't be scared of the racer lingo.  If you are a man you will be in the Category 5 (or mixed 4/5) race.  Women start as Category 4 racers.  This is just the name for the beginner categories. (You move up in categories based on specific criteria.  But don't worry about that for your first race.  Just go have fun.)  There are also "master's" races based on age at many events.  

The Idaho race calendar is a good place to start and find a race. There are links to race flyers that give details as to location, time, cost, categories, race distances, etc.     Many of the clubs maintain a copy of the calendar on their website.  

It is good to have some group riding experience before you attempt your first mass-start race.   Many of the local bike clubs offer group rides where you can meet some other racers and develop basic group riding skills.  You can get some basic initial tips on riding in a group here and some here as well.

Here is an entire Website devoted to New Bike Racers
(A hat tip to our friends at the Minnesota Cycling Federation.)

And here is some information from our neighbors at the Utah Cycling Association some is specific to the UCA but most applies to everybody.

Another good source of information are our local bike shops. They'll most likely have information on races and most sponsor one or more of the local clubs. 
You should review the USACycling rulebook prior to your first race.

Important Notes For that First Race

  • A racing license is required  you can buy a one-day or an annual license. (How do I obtain a license?)
  • You MUST wear your helmet while on your bike.
  • Sleeveless jerseys are not allowed
  • NO aero bars are allowed unless its a time trial.

More information is at USACycling