You may recall, if you have read this blog before, that I have touched in the past upon the subject of racing outside the bounds of what certain people might call “an actual race”. Here is an applicable quote from the linked article:
In truth, if you are astride a bicycle, and you can see someone else who is also astride a bicycle, it is a race, and you must crush them.
That idea was expounded upon a mere one week later in Good Magazine. Regardez la!
Cyclists have a joke about “racing in cat 6,” which, despite the name, is not exactly a race nor does it refer to an official category of cyclists. Cat 6 refers to commuter cyclists, and racing each other to work is their sport. Also called “the great commuter race” and “hipster racing,” cat-6 racing is the unspoken urban tradition of trying to go faster than, and not get passed by, a stranger on your bike.
Is it a coincidence, or is Allison Burtch, the article’s author, being influenced by my blog? I’m kidding of course; only my friends and people to whom I slip the occasional few dollars read this blog. Still, the phenomenon of non-sanctioned racing does exist, but I’m not sure that the application of the phrase “cat 6” to it is correct.
As far as I know, Cat 6 is a joke mostly propagated by, or at least popularized by, the clothing company Twin Six, which makes cycling apparel for those people who wish to wear a team style kit that isn’t from a team. I happen to own some of their items, and they’re just dandy. They fit nicely in the niche between real team kit and Primal kits like so:
Keep in mind that being obsessively self conscious about color and style of attire and accessories is the most important thing about being a cyclist. This system provides a very neat and organized class hierarchy, but that is another matter for another post.
Let’s also not forget that there’s already a category for slow, neophyte bicycle racers who have no idea what the hell. It’s called Category 5, and it is printed clearly on my license.
If you would like to gaze upon my slow, neophyte face, you can see it tomorrow at a bicycle shindig called Southern Discomfort. Please come out and ride with us. You stand to win some great prizes, and you’ll also get to see some nice people who are actually good on a bike, like Jon “Twotone” Woodroof. His face is fast as hell.
Have a great weekend, friends!