ATHLETE Classification sYSTEM

USA COR National Development Program Athlete Classification SYSTEM


The Athlete Classification System (ACS) is a key component of the USA COR National Development Program experiment.  Similar to National Ranking Points, ACA competition members earn Athlete Classifications by placing well in competitions.  However, unlike National Ranking Points, which reset annually, Athlete Classifications degrade gradually over the course of multiple years unless they are refreshed or advanced by placing well at subsequent competitions.  Thus, Athlete Classifications are dynamic indicators of an athlete's current position in their developmental journey, as compared to the broader field of their competitive peers.

Current athlete classifications can be found in the Members Cup category of the USA Surfski National Series standings.


All registered USA COR athletes begin their developmental journey in an unclassified state, represented by the letter "U".  Athletes then progress through five classification levels, represented by the five letters E, D, C, B, and A.  Athletes generally earn "E", "D", and "C" classifications by placing well at smaller local and regional competitions, with "B" and "A" classifications generally earned by placing well at larger regional and national competitions.  Classifications include the year in which they were earned along with their letter designation, for example "E23", "B24", "D25", etc. 


The ACA Ocean Racing Committee maintains the rubric for the Athlete Classification System.  The ACS rubric determines the types and amounts of classifications available for athletes to earn at a given competition based on three simple factors:

View the current version of the ACS rubric.  Rubric revisions are considered by the Ocean Racing Committee on a quarterly basis.


If an athlete does not refresh or advance their current classification by December 31st of the following calendar year, the classification degrades one level, ultimately returning to "Unclassified", as follows:

E24 > U26

D24 > E26 > U28 

C24 > D26 > E28 > U30 

B24 > C26 > D28 > E30 > U32

A24 > B26 > C28 > D30 > E32 > U34 


An Athlete Classification is a valuable performance-based tool for athletes.  It provides perspective on your developmental journey, as well as your relative orientation within the broader competitive landscape.  Your classification can help you design effective training programs, and plan your competitive season.  Athlete Classifications also enable coaches, clubs, and competition organizers to offer programs and events geared toward particular developmental stages.  Finally, Athlete Classifications factor into the calculation of National Ranking Points -- the more classified athletes participating in a competition, and the stronger the classifications of those athletes, the greater the number of points available for all athletes to earn.