Firstly – thank-you to all of you (90 responses) who took the time to give us your feedback. We’re really proud that so many of you gave us such a high overall rating (96% 3 or 4 out of 4).
I know you’ve all missed my REALLY LONG Discord messages – so I’ll make up for that here. 😎. And for those of you in the TL;DR category … just check out the bits in bold. But we hope the rest is useful for those who like to understand why we’ve done certain stuff.
The biggest area we already knew we needed to improve on, and the bit that caused the most dissatisfaction, was the results processing so let’s nail that one first!
As I’ve said before, we’re trying hard to build something scalable … and that is HARD. This resulted in 3 system changes in 3 season. And boy did we pay for that decision, and it led to really long delays in results for you for which we’re really sorry!
But we are on the right track … and last season identified some things that we just HAVE to do to give ourselves half a chance of timely results.
One of the biggest challenges is the linking of riders and teams. 🎻-time… The openness of our system and our willingness to allow literally last-minute changes probably cost us somewhere in the region of about 8-hours work each week. (When you’ve 1000 riders across over 100 teams, stuff gets complex … FAST!). Of course this is work that we’re trying to squeeze in amongst the family and the work that pays the bills. (You can pop the violin’s away now 😆)
So for Season 3 we are going to make 2 major changes:
1) Riders will have to self register on dirtracingseries.com in order to be selected for a team
2) Rider changes will be locked 18-24 hours prior to race start (except Race 1 where they are locked at 17:00 UTC on the Friday before Race 1).
We recognise that point 1 is a little more work for your riders … but of course it does then give them race result viewing and it allows us to build for the future when we’d like to do even more to help with the rider validation. Our goal is no one ever races in the wrong pen and we’ll keep working towards that even if we’re not there yet!
And on point 2, we do know that this makes it harder if you have some last minute #dirtlife issues … believe me we know those! … BUT given the roster size of 8 we hope it won’t be too much of a problem overall. At the end of Season 3, we’ll again come back and ask you all what the impact of this was and if it was too onerous then we’ll find another way. But for Season 3 – please work with us and understand that we won’t be able to say Yes to late changes for fear of letting you all down on the results processing (and driving ourselves loopy with all the manual changes). We really hope you understand. 🙏🏼
The feedback from around a quarter of you was that the rule requiring people to race up if all 3 races were within 0.05w/kg either swept up the wrong people or was too complex.
We agree! But we will never give up on trying to make this the most competitive racing series on Zwift.
We are binning that rule for Season 2 … but we are introducing a new race-up rule!
If you are one of the top riders in your category by Zwiftpower Race Ranking https://zwiftpower.com/rankings.php then you will be required to race up one half-category.
This will mean out of ALL of the riders on Zwiftpower the top 50/60 riders in D race up, the top 150 riders in C race up and the top 120 riders in B categories race up (and about the same we expect in the half-categories). But remember it is only one half category.
So if your race ranking is BELOW the below thresholds in your category then you will be required to race up 1 half-category.
Lastly – we really want to run all timezones this season for both A+ and A and incorporating Half-Categories here too if at all possible. We’ve adapted this from last week based on the new race-up rules to try to create the best racing for all that we can:
A category will only allow Cat A or below riders (including those racing up from B+ of course)
A+ category is where teams with anywhere from 1 to 8 A+ riders would register (and this includes those Cat A riders who must race up due to race ranking).
However, if 1-week prior to registration-close there are 4 or less teams in either of these two categories then we will combine the categories into a single A+ category to ensure decent pen sizes and good races.
P.S. We love the work that Tim Hanson has done on zwiftracing.app but in discussion with Tim, it’s not quite the right time to incorporate that whilst its still in Beta and the algorithm is evolving. But rest assured we’re well linked into Tim’s work and keeping a close eye on the development.
As the rules mature, there are few changes this season, other than to add a rule that in a TTT race if you leave the Pen with a rider who is not registered to your team in time and on dirtracingseries.com then this will be a whole-team DQ and you will be placed last in your race.
Elsewhere, we will require a team to be registered with a rider by registration close to be included in the series, there will be no minimum rider requirements but there will be no late team additions in Series 3 onwards.
We had really good feedback on the points from last season so they are staying as-is. However this time 71% of you were either in favour,, or up for giving it a go, of having a FTS segment in the TTT. EDIT … not for Season 3, we’ll see if we can work out how to do it right for Season 4!
Registrations will open soon – so keep an eye out for Kevin’s message.
Can’t wait to race with you all – next season is going to be our BEST yet! 🔥