Up to 100 men and 100 women will be selected to race in the biggest Zwift race of the year: the UCI Cycling Esports World Championships in February 2023. So how do you get selected?
75% of the selections will be made by National Federations. As determined by the UCI, each federation will be allowed to select a certain number of Worlds riders based on whatever selection criteria each federation determines is best. This post doesn’t cover the selection process of National Federations – you will need to contact your country’s federation for those details.
The remaining 25% of the field will be made up of riders who qualify via the Continental Qualifier events held on Zwift November 12-13, 2022.
Qualification Spots by Gender & Continent
|Americas||Europe & Africa||Rest of World||Total|
So how do you get into the Continental Qualifiers event? It’s no small task, but it is open to everyone regardless of fitness level. In fact, if you’re an experienced Zwift racer on good hardware with dual recording capabilities, it’s just a matter of paperwork.
Here’s how to get into the Continental Qualifiers for the 2023 UCI Esports Worlds, along with everything we know about the Continental Qualifiers races themselves.
Getting Into the Continental Qualifiers
- Register your interest (online form here) between September 1-October 23
- Participate in Qualification Pathway Races October 7-21: during stages 1, 2, and 3 of October’s “Race Like a Champ” ZRacing series. (You don’t need to win these races or place Xth or higher – you just need to finish them and meet the additional requirements below.)
- These special events will only be available on Fridays (Oct 7, 14, and 21st) in four different timeslots: 00:00, 03:00, 10:00, and 18:00 UTC (see upcoming pathway events on ZwiftHacks)
- You must have a linked ZwiftPower account (How to Sign Up for ZwiftPower)
- You must race with a connected HRM
- You must complete all 3 stages and have valid results in the ZwiftPower GC
- You must dual record all 3 stages, saving your dual recording to ZwiftPower no later than 1 day after the relevant race (How to Submit Dual Recording to ZwiftPower)
- You must be over the age of 18 as of 1st November 2022
- Submit pre-verification information by October 28 (see “Pre-Verification Information” below). This information does NOT need to be submitted prior to Qualification Pathway Race participation. It simply needs to be submitted by October 28.
- Prepare to race! Once your information has been submitted and verified you will be sent a confirmation email with a race guide and event joining instructions for your Continental Qualifier. This confirmation email will not be sent until after October 28.
Note: if a rider registers their interest but does not pass any of the eligibility criteria, Zwift will inform them of this outcome via email.
Riders who have raced in Zwift Racing League Premier Division 2021/22, Zwift Knockouts, or are taking part in the upcoming Zwift Grand Prix will automatically receive an invitation from Zwift in early October to the Continental Qualifiers. These riders will still need to complete steps 1, 3, and 4 above.
To get into the Continental Qualifiers all riders must submit the following pre-verification information by October 28 via this online form.
- Rider Information
Zwift ID, Name, Athletic Profile
- Smart Trainer Information
Including manufacturer, type, model, version, serial number, firmware, calibration factor, pictures of the smart trainer (or smart bike) with your bike set up and of the serial number.
For the Continental Qualifiers you must be riding on specific hardware with a manufacturer claimed accuracy of +/- 1% or better (see specific list below).
- Power Meter and Head Unit Information
Including type, model, version, serial number, firmware, calibration factor, slope, pictures of the power meter on the bike and a picture of the serial number.
- ZADA Power Test
The ZADA Power Test workout is available in the Zwift game. You can find it in the workout library; workouts/60-90-minutes-to-burn/zada-power-test
You may re-submit the same file as for other races e.g. ZRL Premier Division, if it is still valid (must be within 6 months of the race date for ZADA Power Test and best efforts on Zwift, and 12 months for outdoor efforts), provided this is on the same equipment you will be using for the Continental Qualifiers.
- Evidence of Real Life or Zwift Efforts
Including files and Strava links to your BEST efforts for 5-15 seconds, 1 minute, 3-5 minutes, 10-20 minutes.
Continental Qualifiers Schedule
|Date||Americas||Europe & Africa||Rest of World|
|Women||Nov 12, 2022||8pm UTC||2pm UTC||8am UTC|
|Men||Nov 13, 2022||8pm UTC||2pm UTC||8am UTC|
Continental Qualifiers Race Format
The Continental Qualifiers will be formatted similarly to the 2023 Esports Worlds, with three individual races each taking place on a separate route. Race fields will shrink as riders are eliminated based on finishing position in races 1 and 2, and while there are a few qualification spots available for top finishers in races 1 and 2, most qualification spots will be won in the final race.
See below for race details. Keep in mind that rider numbers below are indicative of a race putting 13 qualifiers through (Europe). Numbers will be different for Americas and Rest of World races.
Race 1 (Unknown number of starters)
- Scratch race on France’s Roule Ma Poule, ~25 minutes long
- Top 36 through, with top 3 automatically qualifying
Race 2 (36 Starters)
- Hill climb scratch race on a new Innsbruck route, ~25 minutes long
(Route will leave the pens, turn right, go to the sprint, over the reverse of the Legsnapper, towards the main climb, and then up the reverse side)
- 18 riders eliminated, top 15 through, with top 3 automatically qualifying
Race 3 (15 Starters)
- Reverse elimination race Crit City’s Downtown Dolphin, ~15 minutes long
- First rider across the line each lap qualifies and is removed from the race for the first 6 laps
- Last 9 riders have a showdown in the final lap, with first place finisher qualifying
- 7 qualifiers through
Rules for the Continental Qualifiers
- Zwift’s Esports Rules and Regulations will apply to the events
- In addition, the UCI’s Regulations will apply to the events and the UCI will assume overall responsibility for the governance of the events
- All riders will be required to use the following equipment (in addition to any other basic equipment required to Zwift)
- You must compete on one of the following direct drive smart trainers (or smart bikes) and must complete the ZADA power test using the same equipment you will be competing on:
- Power meter, with data dual recording onto a second device (typically a head unit)
- Cadence sensor connected to the Zwift game and functioning throughout the event
- HR Monitor connected to the Zwift game and providing accurate data throughout the event
- Tape measure and weight scales, as all riders will be required to provide height and weight verification videos in the run up to the event
Broadcasts/Where to Watch
All of the Continental Qualifiers will be broadcast live on Zwift’s YouTube Channel.