Dear WUCA Community,
As 2023 comes to an end, I’d like to share a brief retrospect and an invitation for your involvement in 2024.
The 2023 season saw two major steps forward for WUCA, and set the stage for an even broader invitation to ultra-cyclists around the world for 2024. For the first time in our sport, an Ultra-Cycling World Championship was held, hosted by the Race Around Poland, and was a tremendous success both in terms of organization and level of competition. The other noteworthy step was the introduction of a new website, overcoming what had been persistent technical difficulties with our former site. The new site will continue to improve, both in functionality and user interface, but the skeleton is now in place and core functions of calendar, results, challenge series, and records history are all in place.
As for 2024, WUCA has selected the events for our continental championships and has added a new race format to this list – both for the continental and world championships. That new format represents a major expansion for WUCA — into the quickly growing realm of unsupported ultra-distance racing! The 2024 unsupported championships will be hosted by the HooDoo 500 for North America, the Race Across Italy for Europe, and, in parallel with the supported format World Championship race, a first-ever unsupported world championship at the Race Around Poland.
Our sport continues to evolve, with some events going away and new ones arriving. The evolution is not only evidenced by a changing calendar, but also a changing demographic of participants. Our membership has grown rapidly outside of the USA, and even outside of Europe with rapid growth in India. And with the growth in unsupported racing, the age profile of racers appears to be making a shift toward a younger range.
Continued growth requires energy and input from those who are passionate about it. In the short term, WUCA works to encourage a welcoming environment for newcomers to the sport, a safe and supportive series of competitive events across a wide range of distances, and a robust set of rules for ultra-distance records. I invite you to get involved on any of these fronts. If you’re a person who likes to attack immediate challenges and see tangible results, we have several positions that fit. If your interest is more oriented to the longer view, we need that input as well.
Whether short or long term, it is the WUCA Board that can best influence the future of ultra-cycling and there are multiple Director positions on the Board that turn over each calendar year. If you are interested in joining the Board, there are positions opening in January. To be eligible to serve on the Board, you must have been a WUCA member for at least two years. If interested, please submit your name and a personal statement of your qualifications, goals, skills, etc. Keep it to no more than 200 words and email it to: email@example.com. Nominations must be received by December 1, and will go out for member vote shortly thereafter.
Votes will be counted only from current members. Your membership is the lifeblood of the organization, please renew (or join) today. WUCA’s policy for memberships initiated or renewed after October 1 is that expiration is at year-end of the following year, so December 31, 2024. If a Board position isn’t your thing and you’d like to contribute in other ways, feel free to contact either myself at this same address, or others on our Board. We’ll be happy to discuss a variety of volunteer positions that are essential to our operations and may fit your interests.
You will also soon be receiving a very short survey (just one question) from us. Please answer it.
President, World UltraCycling Association