Tour de France hill rating system

  • Thread starter Chris Zacho The Wheelman
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Chris Zacho The Wheelman

Guest
Although the Climb to Kaiser is not a race, the question I have would be
best answered by racers. so here goes...

In the Tour de France, hills are rated by categories based on their
length, steepness and location. However, I cannot seem to be able to
find any "table" or guide as to exactly how these statistics are put
together to rate a certain climb. If anybody here has an insight on how
to rate climbs "TdF style", could you please use it to rate these
significant climbs on the Climb to Kaiser?

Thanks.

Climb to Kaiser Stats. Total ride:
250 km in length
4115 meters total climbing
Maximum elevation: 2804 meters

Hills;

Wildcat Hill
Approx. 22 km into ride. 5 km in length, Avg. grade; 8% Max 10%
(Max grade must be continuous for a minimum of 0.8 km)

Burroughs Grade
Approx 38 km into ride. 9 km in length, Avg grade; 6%, Max; 7%

Tollhouse Grade
Approx 54 km into ride, 13 km in length. Avg. grade; 7% Max 14% (in 2
places)

Shaver Grade
Approx 67 km into ride, 13 km in length. Avg grade 7% Max; 9%

Big Creek Grade
Approx. 90 km into ride, 7 km in length. Avg. grade; 10% Max; 16%

Kaiser Pass Grade
Approx. 114 km into ride, 11 km in length. Avg. grade; 7% Max; 15%
(ride attains maximum atitude at the summit of this climb)

Tamarack Ridge
137 km into ride. 4 climbs, 2 - 5 km each in length, Avg grade; 6% Max;
7-8%

Thanks again for your help. If possible, could you reply to the E-mail
addy above? I rarely visit this group.

- -

"May you have the winds at your back,
And a really low gear for the hills!"

Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"

Chris'Z Corner
http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
 
On Sat, 9 Jul 2005 23:57:17 -0400, Chris Zacho "The Wheelman" wrote:
> In the Tour de France, hills are rated by categories based on their
> length, steepness and location. However, I cannot seem to be able to
> find any "table" or guide as to exactly how these statistics are put
> together to rate a certain climb.


That's because there are none.

> 250 km in length


> Wildcat Hill
> Approx. 22 km into ride. 5 km in length, Avg. grade; 8% Max 10%


Cat. 4.

> Burroughs Grade
> Approx 38 km into ride. 9 km in length, Avg grade; 6%, Max; 7%


Cat. 3.

> Tollhouse Grade
> Approx 54 km into ride, 13 km in length. Avg. grade; 7% Max 14% (in 2
> places)
> Shaver Grade
> Approx 67 km into ride, 13 km in length. Avg grade 7% Max; 9%


These seem to be consecutive (54+13=67), so one HC.

> Big Creek Grade
> Approx. 90 km into ride, 7 km in length. Avg. grade; 10% Max; 16%


Cat. 1.

> Kaiser Pass Grade
> Approx. 114 km into ride, 11 km in length. Avg. grade; 7% Max; 15%
> (ride attains maximum atitude at the summit of this climb)


Cat. 1.

> Tamarack Ridge
> 137 km into ride. 4 climbs, 2 - 5 km each in length, Avg grade; 6% Max;
> 7-8%


3x cat. 4, 1x cat. 3.

--
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<[email protected]> wrote in message
> I always thougt the rating was based on in which gear a car could drive
> on these slopes.
> -> Cat. 2: car drives in second gear.
>


The climbs are rated by altitude gain, distance climbed, % grade, but
also what has preceded the particular climb, i.e. flat road leading up
to the climb or several other climbs before it. IOW, it is somewhat on
a scale of relative difficulty within the stage. OTOH, on some
dreadfully flat stages in the early stages of a race, a cat 4 rating
can be given to an overpass, just to give the climber's jersey a
location to award points (although a cat. designation is not required
as a location to have a mountain points finish line).
 
In article <[email protected]>,
[email protected] wrote:

> I always thougt the rating was based on in which gear a car could drive
> on these slopes.
> -> Cat. 2: car drives in second gear.


Correct. HC climbs are ascents that normal cars cannot traverse. That's
why all the tour vehicles have special "Tour gears" that make them the
only cars capable of going up these hills. As you watch some of the
upcoming stages, look for the wreckage of spectator's cars, burned out
from attempting HC climbs, along the sides of the roads. Every year the
authorities warn fans against attempting to climb these roads in
unmodified cars, and yet every year many hundreds make the attempt.

Also, I have a bridge I would like to sell you. It's central span is
rated a Cat 4 climb, so it's safe for cars.

--
Ryan Cousineau [email protected] http://www.wiredcola.com/
"I don't want kids who are thinking about going into mathematics
to think that they have to take drugs to succeed." -Paul Erdos
 

>In article <[email protected]>,
>[email protected] wrote:
>
>> I always thougt the rating was based on in which gear a car could drive
>> on these slopes.
>> -> Cat. 2: car drives in second gear.


If you change "a car" to "a 1903 car" you would be getting warm.
I think the car in question was a Renault.
 
Thank you so very much! And I do remember hearing one of the announcer's
mentioning gears on an old Renault....

- -

"May you have the winds at your back,
And a really low gear for the hills!"

Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"

Chris'Z Corner
http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
 
Bob Martin wrote:
> >
> >> I always thougt the rating was based on in which gear a car could drive
> >> on these slopes.
> >> -> Cat. 2: car drives in second gear.

>
> If you change "a car" to "a 1903 car" you would be getting warm.
> I think the car in question was a Renault.


How many [forward]gears do you think cars in 1903 had? Likely two at
the most.
 
Turgun Gringioni says...

>Dumbass -


>The definitive RBR post on rated climbs (by Hildenbrand):


>http://groups-beta.google.com/group...nd+rated+climbs&rnum=2&hl=en#02f8fa45f4516d4c


If that's definitive, then there's still a ways to go to salvation. For
example, the discussion of Stelvio vs. Evans makes no mention of altitude. You
hear TdF riders talk as if a 2,000 meter summit is serious altitude but the Mt.
Evans race starts at almost 2,300 meters and tops out at over 4,300. So, yes,
length, steepness and how sustained a climb is all figure into the rating, but
if there were 4,300 meter summits to climbs in the TdF, then altitude would be a
component also. So, I agree that the grade of Evans does not merit HC, but I'd
bet the Danielson suffered at an HC level when he broke the record on it last
year, especially on the upper switchbacks.
 
"Carl Sundquist" <[email protected]> wrote in news:1121024828.820405.215790
@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com:

> How many [forward]gears do you think cars in 1903 had? Likely two at
> the most.


The Tour was much harder then. All the climbs were either Cat I or II. Oh,
how I yearn for those days!
 
Mad Dog wrote:
> Turgun Gringioni says...
>
> >Dumbass -

>
> >The definitive RBR post on rated climbs (by Hildenbrand):

>
> >http://groups-beta.google.com/group...nd+rated+climbs&rnum=2&hl=en#02f8fa45f4516d4c

>
> If that's definitive, then there's still a ways to go to salvation. For
> example, the discussion of Stelvio vs. Evans makes no mention of altitude.




<snip>



Dumbass -

The TdF does not calculate altitude into their ratings. As for the
article by Hildenbrand, IIRC, Cycle Sport published it. They published
some other stuff by him also.

I didn't agree with everything he said, but he was much more
knowledgable than the average RBR Fred. Such as yourself.

thanks,

K. Gringioni.
 
Kurgan Gringioni wrote:

> I didn't agree with everything he said, but he was much more
> knowledgable than the average RBR Fred. Such as yourself.


fyi dumbass,

the dude's still contributing. i picked up a copy of Rocky Mtn. Sports
in colo. (a freebie magazine you get in bike shops) and they used his
material for a tdf article.
 
Turdgun Gringioni says...

>The TdF does not calculate altitude into their ratings.


Dumbass -

If they had a stage going to 14,000' in the TDF, you'd hear about it and I'd bet
it would contribute to the rating. However, if you actually knew how to read,
you'd see that I was commenting on the thread you referenced and the fact that
in the context of that thread discussion (which included comparing Evans to
Stelvio) altitude SHOULD be included. Maybe you should go race Evans then try
to convince us that altidude doesn't figure into climb difficulty.

>I didn't agree with everything he said, but he was much more
>knowledgable than the average RBR Fred. Such as yourself.


If he's so much more knowledgable than me, then why wasn't altitude included
when comparing the Stelvio to Evans? You were the one claiming it was the
definitive RBR post on hill ratings and now you say that you don't agree with
everything he said. You're tripping over your own tongue. Fred.
 
Mad Dog wrote:
> Turdgun Gringioni says...
>
> >The TdF does not calculate altitude into their ratings.

>
> Dumbass -
>
> If they had a stage going to 14,000' in the TDF, you'd hear about it and I'd bet
> it would contribute to the rating. However, if you actually knew how to read,
> you'd see that I was commenting on the thread you referenced and the fact that
> in the context of that thread discussion (which included comparing Evans to
> Stelvio) altitude SHOULD be included. Maybe you should go race Evans then try
> to convince us that altidude doesn't figure into climb difficulty.




Dumbass Fred -

I've ridden over 17,500 ft. passes and yes, the altitude does factor
in, of course.

But: that't no the purpose of the TdF categorization system. The
measurements are intended to reflect selectivity potential. The longer
and steeper the climb, the less drafting matters. The climbs I did in
Tibet - they were all over 12,000 ft. at the base, but the gradients
were typically only 2-3%. It would be devastatingly selective for those
not good at altitude, but for the ones who could handle it, they could
draft each other all the way up.

World class climbers - they're within 1 or 2 percent of each other in
ability and they go much faster than us Freds. Given those 2 factors,
drafting matters on climbs, hence the rating system.

thanks,

K. Gringioni.
 
Turdgun Gringioni says...

>I've ridden over 17,500 ft. passes and yes, the altitude does factor
>in, of course.


I suppose I'm supposed to be impressed? Sorry, not. Were you in a race? Did
you win? Was first prize a liter of soured yak butter? It that why you're such
a bitter *****?

>But: that't no the purpose of the TdF categorization system. The
>measurements are intended to reflect selectivity potential.


Altitude such as on Evans has huge selectivity potential, dipshit.

>The longer
>and steeper the climb, the less drafting matters. The climbs I did in
>Tibet - they were all over 12,000 ft. at the base, but the gradients
>were typically only 2-3%. It would be devastatingly selective for those
>not good at altitude, but for the ones who could handle it, they could
>draft each other all the way up.


You're evading the issue. You put your seal of approval on Bruce's post, then
you've said you have criticisms of it. You fail to see that the thread you
referenced was in fact not definitive as you claimed because it neglected
altitude in a specific comparison it made, but now you acknowledge altitude's
importance.

You can't seem to approach any kind of consistency in your argument. That's
probably because you are wrong - and a dumbass Fred.
 
Mad Dog wrote:
> Turdgun Gringioni says...
>
> >I've ridden over 17,500 ft. passes and yes, the altitude does factor
> >in, of course.

>
> I suppose I'm supposed to be impressed? Sorry, not. Were you in a race? Did
> you win? Was first prize a liter of soured yak butter? It that why you're such
> a bitter *****?
>
> >But: that't no the purpose of the TdF categorization system. The
> >measurements are intended to reflect selectivity potential.

>
> Altitude such as on Evans has huge selectivity potential, dipshit.
>
> >The longer
> >and steeper the climb, the less drafting matters. The climbs I did in
> >Tibet - they were all over 12,000 ft. at the base, but the gradients
> >were typically only 2-3%. It would be devastatingly selective for those
> >not good at altitude, but for the ones who could handle it, they could
> >draft each other all the way up.

>
> You're evading the issue. You put your seal of approval on Bruce's post, then
> you've said you have criticisms of it. You fail to see that the thread you
> referenced was in fact not definitive as you claimed because it neglected
> altitude in a specific comparison it made, but now you acknowledge altitude's
> importance.




Dumbass -

It's rating w/ regards to mass start racing.

That's why sometimes a climb late in the race will be HC while if the
same climb is early, it will be Cat 1.

thanks,

K. Gringioni.
 
"Kurgan Gringioni" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
>
>
>
> I've ridden over 17,500 ft. passes and yes, the altitude does factor
> in, of course.
>


My penis is bigger than yours and my father can beat your father up
 
Frank Drackman wrote:
> "Kurgan Gringioni" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:[email protected]...
> >
> >
> >
> > I've ridden over 17,500 ft. passes and yes, the altitude does factor
> > in, of course.
> >

>
> My penis is bigger than yours and my father can beat your father up





Dumbass -

Any Fred, even you, can ride over passes that high, as long as enough
acclimatization time is put in.

thanks,

K. Gringioni.
 
Turdgun Gringioni says...

>It's rating w/ regards to mass start racing.


Penis Breath -

You're far dumber than you appear to be at first glance.

And that's impressive, to say the least.