The ECCC runs a full slate of categories at every race, catering to everybody from complete beginners to veteran pros for both Men and Women. Each of these is associated with but distinct from non-collegiate categories, as listed below and defined in the USAC Collegiate Rulebook. The process for progressing through them is discussed on the Upgrades page.
All ECCC road races feature five categories (A--D, Intro), typically spread across 8-9 fields.
The ECCC's Introduction to Bicycle Racing categories are for new racers looking to learn more about riding, particularly in a group, and get some racing experience in a safe, educational environment. More information is available on the Intro page.
Every MTB rider has separate categories for Endurance (XC/STXC), Downhill/Super-D, and Dual Slalom/Mountain Cross, each consisting of two women's categories (A, B) and three men's categories (A, B, C).
ECCC MTB races do not have separate Intro categories due to the nature of the races. However, half an hour before every XC and STXC race begins for the day there is a coached clinic. These feature drill exercises and instruction to help new riders pick up a few more skills and improve their racing. Look for these to meet by the starting line of each endurance race.