Looking at the start lists for the C Group in the Absa Cape Epic RACES tomorrow morning shows an entry rife with sandbaggers. The 0730 PST start has over 30 of them, two A+ and an A rider amongst them. This is a short event probably 35 minutes or so and these fools are going to blow up the start and splinter the field thus fouling up an event that would a good competitive race otherwise. The other ones are just as bad. I didn’t look at the D fields but it’s probably crowded with a bunch of C category miscreants.
Zwift, just allow Zwiftpower category riders in their respective events. At the very least, let them know ahead of time they’re going to get DQ’d and lose credit for the event. But I believe, restricting entry to correct categories will reduce sandbagging by 90%. There’s always going to be people looking to game the system so getting a reduction from eliminating the low hanging fruit would be great.
Sadly we’ve been asking for this for years but apparently Zwift is not interested in offending what can only be assumed to be the extremely fragile egos of the sandbaggers for fear of losing their subscription revenue.
But yes, until Zwift takes this seriously and starts offending people by DQ’ing them before the race or preventing them from entering wrong categories Zwift racing will continue to be a joke and not taken seriously.
ZwiftPower does as good a job as it can but it is still a post-race fix. It doesn’t prevent the race from being ruined by the sandbaggers.
This is what 50 Sandbaggers looks like in the C category start list for the Absa Cape Epic Race going off in an hour. We’ve got two A+ riders and two A riders! All of these out of category riders have extensive experience on Zwift. Why are they doing this? Names in Image removed
I can almost make up the excuses they will give for doing this ‘I am on a recovery ride’, ‘I am not at race fitness’, ‘It doesn’t effect anyone else’ or any other of the rubbish that gets touted as justification; in my view they are just being selfish.
I am having real difficulty believing that we will have a solution from Zwift to resolve this type of behaviour.
I finished 76th on the road and 23rd in Zwiftpower which means there were either a lot of sandbaggers or a lot of people faster than me that aren’t on ZP. Probably some combination of both. There were a few ZP finishers faster than me that are B riders. One of them, third place, was a solid B and the others were barely above the line. The D field had about the same ratio of sandbaggers to real in category participants.
I do know that the start was the usual way above category power we see when there are faster riders than C riders. I barely managed to stay with the lead group of 30 until the second time inside the volcano, about 5km and this is usually the case when there are A’s and B’s driving the start. When I got dropped, the next group I was in, starting up the climb, had the ZP winner and podium IIRC.
Obviously, at least IMHO, the quick and easy solution is to limit participation in races to in category riders. I strongly believe this will make a material difference in these events.
I know, I know, I go on and on about this but I’m a bit shocked: There are a large number of A&B category riders signed up for tomorrow’s C cat Stage 2 TT! And a bunch of C riders in the D cat event! What in the world is wrong you miscreants? For one thing, the stage is limited to 250 riders in each category for the event so if you’re invading the other groups, then the riders who rightfully should be entered are going to be relegated to finding another time slot. And these sandbaggers are going to get DQ’d so other than showing the lower cat riders how fast you are when you blow by them, there is no point to do this.
Out of interest I pulled some numbers together from all of the Stage 1 events to see what the scale of the issue was. I am not sure all the results have been processed but I reckon it should not effect the overall distribution that much.
It is looking like around 20% of riders in the Open events (12% Women Only events) are being removed for entering the wrong CAT or being over the CAT limit.
Guess these percentages will be higher for Stage 2 with the limited event size.
Tomorrow we are back to mass start events and the down category riders continue to plague the C and D group events. In the race starting 24 hours from now, there are probably 30 out of cat racers signed up for the C and D races. There’s three A’s (no A+ yet) and a slew of B’s in the C group. There’s one A and bunch of C’s in the D group. Here’s what it looks like in Zwiftpower:
I imagine one of the mods will redact the names from this list but I’m not exactly sure why they do that. This is easily obtained information and it’s not slandering anybody; they’ve all signed up to a category below where they belong. They’re all on Zwiftpower and it can be surmised they have some clue about which race they should be entering. Perhaps one of them would be kind enough to let us know the why of it.
I do know with this many sandbaggers, the start of this race going into the Jungle is going to be way above C cat power. As before, this will blow up what could be a fun event and will end up being strung out trying to hang on. There isn’t as much draft in the MTB races because the speeds are lower so the race will get strung out very quickly.
We redact the names to keep consistent with the name and shame policy.
I understand what you are describing, but those are not sandbaggers, a sand bagger is someone performing lower than his ability to stay in a category (so a sandbagger will always enter the correct cat but will ride so that he/she don’t go over the cat limit and still win) .
Those that you show are people the enter the wrong cat some call them cursers.
Maybe, just maybe a name and shame policy when there is publicly available factual information should involve some shame on the part of these miscreants. We need some way of making these people accountable if we’re not going to limit category entry to the entrant’s Zwiftpower category.
You say potato and I say potahtow; I say tomato and you say tomahtow. Riders going to down cat will always be sandbaggers to me. You can’t tell what they are in the start pen or during the event until they’re kickin’ everybody’s ass. The very anonymity afforded by the way Zwift establishes the leaderboard gives them the opportunity to spoof the rest of the field.
A coupla things here. There were over 60 down cat riders in this morning’s Absa Cape Epic C race. And even more in the D race. I would post up the screenshots but they’re on my Zwift computer and I’m too knackered from the race to get up and send them over. Besides Gerrie will just redact the names so what’s the point?
I finished 50th on the road (dirt?) and 12th in Zwiftpower. Obviously, the A (there were at least 6 of 'em) and B (lots and lots of 'em) sandbaggers had an effect on the outcome of the race. I was putting down 3.6-3.8w/kg trying to hang and got dropped like a stone.
I also put down enough juice to get my fat ass upgraded to B so I won’t be complaining much about sandbaggers 'cuz when you’re at the back of the B field the fools riding off the front don’t matter. This doesn’t mean it’s not a problem, of course, it’s just that it doesn’t affect me as much.
You are welcome to post the pictures, it give readers a good sense of how bad it is. I am trying to help you to show the issue and still be in the rules. I could delete the pictures but I make an effort to redact them to help you get your point across.