Types of Road Events

Road Race

Competitors begin together on either a large circuit of roads or a point-to-point course, with the first rider over the finish line winning the event. Terrain and weather conditions take their toll on the riders, as does the length of the race.


A Criterium is a massed start road race consisting of multiple laps on a short, 1 to 2 km circuit. Originating on the city streets of Europe, “crits” are exciting races to watch, as the riders are in almost constant view.

From a rider’s perspective, these races place a premium on speed and nerve as tight corners demand bike-handling skill and rapid acceleration from the corner exits into the straights. High speeds become higher when the race organizers include “primes” or special sprints for prizes. These events can often finish in mass sprints of 50 riders or more.

Time Trial

In these events the individuals race against the clock, commonly over distances of 15 to 40 km. Known as the “race of truth”, the time trial demands the utmost stamina and concentration from riders, where discipline, conditioning and technique are the traits leading to a victory.

Time trials also can be ideal introductions to competition for novice riders who are still learning the basics of group riding and may not be confident enough to participate in massed-start events. Efficient riding technique and good aerodynamics are essential and make time trials one of the most technically exacting of cycling events. Ontario’s Anne Samplonius won the silver medal in the Senior Women’s ITT at the 1994 World Championships.

Stage Races

Stage races incorporate elements of all of the types of races described above. Each event is known as a stage. Racing over a different distance day after day is only for the fittest of the fit.

The winner with the lowest aggregate time is the winner. There is a winner for each stage, and of course an overall winner. A crafty, consistent rider may win a stage race without ever winning a stage.

Hill Climbs

Point-to-point time trials in which the finish line is at a considerably higher altitude than the start line are commonly referred to as hill climbs. The steepest, toughest climbs in Ontario are sought out for these events, which pit the riders against both the clock and the hill.

Selecting a Road Race Category and Licence

This chart is designed to help riders new to the sport to pick a category as well as help all riders determine which kind of membership is required to participate in their categories. Riders who still have questions about categories after reading these charts should contact the OCA office.

Age Information
UCI Licence
Junior Men**Age: 17-18*
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RMJ
Ability Level: All
Junior Women**Age: 17-18*
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RMJ
Ability Level: All
Elite 1/2 MenAge: 19+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RME.1 / RME.2 / RMU23.1 / RMU23.2
Ability Level: Professional and/or Highly Skilled Elite Amateur Racers
RME.1 / RME.2 / RMU23.1 / RMU23.2Professional and/or Highly Skilled Elite Amateur Racers
Elite 3 MenAge: 19+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RME.3 / RMU23.3
Ability Level: Intermediate - Advanced
RME.3 / RMU23.3Intermediate - Advanced
Elite 4 Men**Age: 19+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RME.4 / RMU23.4
Ability Level: Novice - Intermediate
RME.4 / RMU23.4Novice - Intermediate
Elite Women (E3)**Age: 19+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RME.1 / RME.2 / RME.3
Ability Level: Novice - Intermediate
RME.1 / RME.2 / RME.3Novice - Intermediate
M1 MenAge: 35+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RMMA.1 / RMMB.1 / RMMC.1 / RMMD.1
Ability Level: Advanced – Elite
RMMA.1 / RMMB.1 / RMMC.1 / RMMD.1Advanced – Elite
M2 MenAge: 35+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RMMA.2 / RMMB.2 / RMMC.2 / RMMD.2
Ability Level: Intermediate - Advanced
RMMA.2 / RMMB.2 / RMMC.2 / RMMD.2Intermediate - Advanced
M3 Men**Age: 35+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RMMA.3 / RMMB.3 / RMMC.3 / RMMD.3
Ability Level: Novice - Intermediate
RMMA.3 / RMMB.3 / RMMC.3 / RMMD.3Novice - Intermediate
Master 30-39 Women**Age: 30-39
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RWMA
Ability Level: All
Master 40+ Women**Age: 40+
UCI Licence
UCI Licence: RWMB
Ability Level: All
Sportif Category M/W**Age: 17+
Citizen Permit
UCI Licence: No Code on UCI
Ability Level: Novice/Beginner
No Code on UCINovice/Beginner

* Any riders under 17 interested in racing in an Ontario Cup or Regional Road Race in the Junior category must be approved by the OCA and hold a UCI Licence.
** New members MUST select an entry level/novice category unless they have a previous race licence with another cycling body (proof of this is required before a licence will be granted).

Citizen Events
Licence requirements subject to event rules.
Note availability of non-member permits subject to OCA approval

Race type and membership required
Age Beginner Sport Open
Dependent on Event UCI
Non-Member Permit
Non-Member Permit
Non-Member Permit

Ontario Cup and Upgrade Points

Ontario Cup Points

Ontario Cup points are awarded to all categories except Senior 4 Men.  Only riders who purchase their racing membership through the OCA are eligible for O-Cup points.

(Please visit MEMBERSHIP for One-Event Racing Permit details).  DNF riders (riders who do not finish) are not entitled to O-Cup points.  O-Cup points are different than upgrade points.

The breakdown of O-Cup points is as follows for each category:

Place Points Place Points
1st 25 9th 7
2nd 20 10th 6
3rd 16 11th 5
4th 13 12th 4
5th 11 13th 3
6th 10 14th 2
7th 9 15th 1
8th 8

Season ending  Ontario Cup Road Series point totals will be a simple tally of the all the O-Cup points earned at O-Cup events for the current year.  In the event of a tie, the Series Champion will be decided by the following; 1) Most Wins 2) If still tied, most 2nd places 3) If still tied, most 3rd places 4) If still tied, most 4th places 5) If still tied, then highest placed finish in final race takes precedence.

Since 2009: O-Cup points and upgrade points will be consumed by out of Province riders. i.e. A rider with a Quebec licence who finishes 3rd in a O-Cup will “consume” those points.

Upgrade Points

Upgrade points will be awarded at all Ontario based regional and Ontario Cup races running ability based categories. Upgrade points will be awarded for all categories based on field size. Points will also be awarded on the basis of any combined field sizes so if a field is combined, points will not be broken out by category placing but rather placing in that combined category.

Riders may upgrade at 30 points and must upgrade once they have 45 points or more.

Field Size of 41+ riders (Not including DNS) Field Size of 30-40 riders (Not Including DNS) Field Size of 15-29 riders (Not Including DNS) Field Size of less than 15 riders (Not Including DNS)
1st place – 20 points 1st place – 17 points 1st place – 15 points 1st place – 11 points
2nd place – 17 points 2nd place – 15 points 2nd place – 13 points 2nd place – 9 points
3rd place – 15 points 3rd place – 13 points 3rd place – 11 points 3rd place – 7 points
4th place – 13 points 4th place – 11 points 4th place – 9 points 4th place – 5 points
5th place – 11 points 5th place – 10 points 5th place – 7 points 5th place – 3 points
6th place – 10 points 6th place – 9 points 6th place – 5 points
7th place – 9 points 7th place – 8 points 7th place – 4 points
8th place – 8 points 8th place – 7 points 8th place – 3 points
9th place – 7 points 9th place – 6 points 9th place – 2 points
10th place – 6 points 10th place – 5 points 10th place – 1 points
11th place – 5 points 11th place – 4 points
12th place – 4 points 12th place – 3 points
13th place – 3 points 13th place – 2 points
14th place – 2 points 14th place – 1 point
15th-20th place – 1 point 15th place – 1 point

Note the above points scale is based on the field size. In races with combined fields, the above chart will apply to the combined field as a whole and not to each individual category.

The Master Women and Junior Men & women categories however will NOT have a mandatory upgrade.

Elite 1/2 Downgrade Rule

Elite 1/2 Men and Women must earn at least 1 upgrade point during the season to retain their status for the following season.


  • Riders who are riding on UCI, or CCC Private/Trade Teams are exempt from Elite ½ downgrade
  • OCA Private/Trade Teams are now no longer exempt from the above downgrade rule. Any riders not meeting the point requirement criteria will be downgraded at the end of the season. They may apply for an exemption to the OCA Licensing Committee prior to the following season.
  • Riders who have Elite MTB Status may retain E2 status if they choose.

Out of Province Races and Results

Note Out-of-Province racers “eat up” points should they finish in a position that would earn points.

For riders who participate in sanctioned races outside of Ontario, you may earn the equivalent upgrade points in these races by having the out-of-province results verification sheet filled out.

Competition Results and Protests

If a rider has a race problem/protest at an event they should deal immediately with the Chief Commissaire at that event. The Chief Commissaire’s decision shall be final.  If a rider wishes to further appeal the decision, a written protest must be filed to the Provincial Chief Commissaire c/o the OCA within 10 business days.

NOTE: Any race result discrepancies must be reported to the finish commissaire within 15 minutes of being posted at the event. Following this 15 minute period, results are considered final and are signed off as official.