In December 2013, the Ultra Race Directors Committee and the UMCA announced a new and innovative program to recognize those ultra racers willing to push their endurance limits by competing in two or more 500 mile races in one calendar year.
The ULTRA 500-mile series challenge was conceived by the Race Directors Committee as a way to grow the Ultra Cup, increase racer participation in events, and foster collaboration between the Race Directors and the UMCA to jointly promote the sport of ultracycling.
The ULTRA 500-mile series challenge is primarily a participation-based program. It has been designed to encourage more riders to take on the challenge of longer 500 mile events. To earn your ULTRA 500-mile race series challenge recognition, complete two or more approved 500-mile races, a very achievable goal. The series events also count toward the UMCA Ultra Cup and World Cup standings so you have multiple ways to earn recognition.
The plan is to crown as many people as possible with divisions in age, bike type, and gender to makes this a very achievable and fun goal for any rider. There is a TEAM division. Yes, put together a two, four or eight person team and make plans to attend two of these destination races and build your own memories from there! Teams are allowed up to a 50% substitution as long as they stay in the same gender classification.
The Ultra Race Director’s Association is working on ULTRA 500 signature awards and/or clothing that will be available for purchase. Top performers will also be recognized as those that finish the most official 500-mile races prior to the end of the season.
Current races in the series are:
Heart of the South 500
Race across Oregon
The Texas Time Trials
The Silver State 508