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2009 Low-Key Hillclimbs

Scoring details

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Low-Key Scoring Department
Low-Key scoring department hard at work

Scoring in the Low-Key Hillclimbs is simple!

individual scores

For each event, a rider receives a score equal to 100 times the ratio of the median time for his/her gender and his/her time up the hill. For example, if there's 41 riders, and the 21st rider gets a time of 40 minutes, and your time is 50 minutes, you get a score of 100 × (40/50) = 80 points.

At the end of the series, your overall score is calculated as the sum of your five best scores (during the series, or if climbs are canceled, it's half the climbs completed, rounded up) from the nine weeks: you get four throw-aways. These throwaways become available at weeks two, four, six, and eight, so after three weeks, for example, it's top two scores.

Those who've volunteered at least one week where volunteering caused them to not be able to climb, or who received volunteer credit for some non-Low-Key event (like a memorial ride), get to drop an extra score (assuming there's still at least one counting score, of course), and pro-rate their total score. For example, instead of 5 counting scores, they can count 4, then multiply their total by 5/4. This basically counts their average counting score for that extra dropped score. Volunteer three times or more, and you can drop up to two scores (this was new for 2008).

And of course, to get a score, you need to wear your helmet. Sorry, kids!

team scores

Team scores are calculated using the top three riders in each team for a given week. Overall team score is calculated using the same number of weeks as individual overall scores.

One complication: any team volunteers (who didn't ride) in a given week score, for the purposes of overall team score only, their median score in all weeks in which they participate as a rider. This rule, "The Heller Rule", prevents teams from being penalized for having riders volunteer. Note this is a small change from 2007, when average score was used. Note, unlike the individual scores, this potential bonus to team score is awarded every time a rider volunteers. So if I volunteer rides week 1, then volunteers weeks 2 through 9, the team score may benefit on every one of those weeks. The volunteer contribution to team score is included, though, only on the overall score page, not the individual climb results pages. The scoring on the individual result page represents the team which did the best on that particular climb, while the scores listed on the overall page are intended only for the calculation of the best overall team.

The best teams almost always get a balanced contribution from the women's category, as women's scores tend to be a bit more spread out. Recruit!

most improved rider

There will be a special category for "most improved" rider. This is determined using the slope of a regression of the natural log of the score versus the week number for riders who did at least half the climbs (volunteer credit applies), or three climbs, whichever is greater. New for 2009: the lowest score is discarded before doing the regression, to prevent bad luck or just a simple bad day from affecting the result. Don't take this one too seriously, but it's fun to see how we improve (or not) relative to other riders over the course of the fall. The best way to do well in this one is to come into the series way out of shape :).

most improved from last year

The most improved from last year is calculated by comparing the difference of your median score from this year to your median score from last year. So bad luck on one or two rides won't affect your result here, much. New for 2009: This classification will be limited to those who rode or volunteered in at least 3 climbs from the year prior.

endurance competition

There will be a special ranking for riders who have accumulated the most total climbing time during the series, acknowledging their superior demonstration of endurance

100% club

The 100% club consists of riders who've climbed, or gotten volunteer credit for, every climb in the series. Either activity helps make the series a success. Thanks!!!


Dan Connelly