Rules of Competition

    AA Sports
    Rules of Competition

    The Duathlon/Triathlon Referees What are they looking for? And why?

     

    These rules are applicable to AA Sports, Ltd owned events ONLY. USAT rules supercede what is posted here for all USAT sanctioned events. Events managed and/or timed by AA Sports, Ltd., but not owned by AA Sports, Ltd. are not subject to these rules.It shall be the responsibility of each registered athlete to compete in a manner that is in-compliance with these “Rules of Competition” [DQ #5]If you are observed and reported for an infraction of these Rules of Competition, and you decide to dispute either the infraction report or the assigned penalty, the ONLY official empowered to hear and act upon your penalty inquiry is the Head Referee for AA Sports Ltd., or his designated Course Marshall representative at the results table following the race. Alternatively you may inquire to the Head Referee by email or by phone.

    NOTE: None of the other AA Sports Managers or event workers, including the Race Director, and the Assistance Race Director observed your infraction. So they have no choice but to refer you back to the Head Referee and Course Marshall who observed the infraction.



    Swim Course Statement of Purpose

    There is NOTHING more important than your Safety. The SWIM represents very real and unique dangers that are different from the BIKE or the RUN. The following rules and swim tips are provided to help ensure your safety, fairness of competition, and the enjoyment of the sport of triathlon.

    • Wetsuits are optional as long as the water temperature is warmer than 61 degrees F (and above). When water temperatures are 60 degrees F and colder, ALL swimmers are REQUIRED to wear wetsuits.
    • Once the water temperature exceeds 75 degrees F (and this rarely occurs), only wetsuits without sleeves will be allowed. Once the water temperature exceeds 77 degrees F (78 degrees F and above) wetsuits will NOT be allowed.
    • No snorkels (or any other breathing aid), fins, paddles, artificial propulsion equipment or flotation devices are allowed.
    • Swim goggles and faceplates may be worn.
    • For the beginner triathlete, if you are a slower swimmer, move to the rear and to the outside of the swim group. This will result in a slightly longer swim distance, but will greatly reduce the chance of physical contact with another swimmer.
    • Take notice where the swim course is directed and landmarks that may assist you during your swim prior to the start of the event. It is the athletes responsibility to site the buoys and to stay on course, even if your vision is compromised by fogged goggles and having the sun in your eyes.
    • If you need assistance, move to the inside of the swim course, raise and wave your hand, and yell for assistance. A water safety craft will be there immediately to help.
    • Any departure from the course as designed and marked requires the athlete to resume their race at the point of departure.


    Bike Course Statement of Purpose

    • The Safety of our participants on the Bike Course is the first priority of our Bike Course Marshals who monitor the course on motorcycles.
      Next is to have a fair competition that allows you to produce a time that is reflective of your individual effort, without any artificial enhancements or Outside Assistance. [DQ #11]
    • Hearing Impairments Rule.
      The Hearing Impairments Rule applies throughout the competition, including the bike course and the run course. Wearing or using anything that impairs your hearing, or your ability to hear other athletes, and/or race officials, and ultimately undermines your safety during the race is prohibited! This includes, but is not limited to, any music audio or communications devices, such as: iPods, cell phones, FM radios, 2-way radios, any type of audio earphones, text messaging devices, sound muffling acoustical ear muffs or plugs, etc.Note! Not allowing headphones is both a safety issue as well as an issue of you not being distracted in a manner that impedes your ability to hear the instructions of the course marshals, or to hear the comments from competing athletes, or to focus on the directional signage clearly. Your full attention needs to be on the race. Disallowing headphones is not intended to be a punishment, but to keep you both safe and having all your mental faculties focused on the business at hand.
    • Unofficial support crews or vehicles are prohibited from the racecourse during the race. (The presence of such people or vehicles will cause the disqualification [DQ #11] of the entered bicyclist.) It is important that the bike course stay as free of vehicle traffic as possible for the safety and enjoyment of all participants in the race.
    • Any mechanical malfunction or flat tire repairs must be performed by each individual unaided. Except for hand tools and individual parts acquired from another on-course participating bicyclists (ie: a tire, a tube, a CO2 cartridge, etc.), NO OUTSIDE ASSISTANCE (including verbal coaching) may be received to repair any bicycle damage or failure. [DQ #11]

    BASIC REQUIREMENTS

    • AA Sports accepts all bicycles that meet current published USAT bicycle specification criteria.
    • AA Sports requires that all competition bicycles meet current published USAT bicycle specification criteria.

    This means no recumbents; no tricycles, and no multi-person tandem bicycles are allowed in AA Sports events.

    • It is required that you rack your bicycle on the bike rack that is marked with the number range incorporating the bike number that was assigned to you. Improper racking will result in double time penalties being assessed.
    • Handle Bar End Plugs.
      For your own safety, it is a requirement that your bike is equipped with Handlebar End Plugs (HEP’s). [DQ #1]These can be obtained from the bike tech support team if you do not have them.
    • Approved bicycle helmets (with the chin strap fastened) are required at all times during the race from un-rack to re-rack. This is a “hands on” rule. If your bicycle is in your hands, your helmet is required to be on your head. This means that your helmet goes “on” (with the chin strap fastened) BEFORE you remove your bicycle from the bike rack, and then stays “on” (with the chin strap fastened) until your bicycle is returned to its spot on the assigned bike rack. [DQ #7]
    • You are required to be body-marked with your Bicycle Frame Number installed on your bicycle in a manner that is clearly readable to race officials BEFORE you enter the bicycle transition area. [DQ #10] Your (left leg) entrant number and Bicycle Frame Number must be the same number.For races that have two transition zones (point to point races) you must have your run bib number and body marking to match your Bicycle Frame Number or you will be required to provide picture ID to retrieve your bike from the transition zone.
    BIKE COURSE BOUNDRIES AND THE USE OF SPECIALTY LANESThe bike course has a beginning (an entry point with timing mats) and an end (an exit point with timing mats). In between these 2 reference locations the bike course is “contained” by boundaries. And as soon as you are “on” the course, ALL of the Rules of Competition apply. Sometimes the bike course requires the creation of temporary “specialty lanes” defined by orange traffic cones, candlestick stanchions, temporary fencing and ribbon, or other similar equipment. You are required to complete the race by staying on the entire bike course as it is laid-out, and within the boundaries as marked, including any specialty lanes created for the race. Riding your bicycle in any manner that short-cuts or exits the course especially over the centerline (a major safety violation) or the equivalent is an immediate disqualification. [DQ #2]COURSE RE-ENTRY REQUIREMENT

    Any legal departure from the bike course boundaries as designed and marked for any reason that does not conflict with the Rules of Competition (bike repair, fix a flat tire, restroom, etc….) requires that the athlete exit the course walking, and further requires the athlete must re-enter the course, walking, back to the same point at which they left the bike course before resuming their bicycle race.

    ATHLETES PLEASE NOTE: All motorized vehicles on the bike course, including but not limited to: Course Marshals. Race Officials, Police, and other first responders, are NOT restricted to stay inside the defined course boundaries. Athletes are required to adhere to the published Rules of Competition through-out the race, and ARE required to stay within defined boundaries of the bike course, especially the centerline, which is an absolute boundary of the course. This ADVISORY especially applies to the leading bicyclist(s) on the course. Any athlete departing the defined course is subject to the published penalties.

    The role of the lead motorcyclist is a defensive role to alert the public and the course workers that the race has started and the first cyclist is coming their way. Their role may require brief, temporary departures to areas outside the defined course. Any leading bicyclist following the lead motorcycle outside the defined boundaries of the course is subject to the published penalties.

    NOTE:The lead motorcycle is NOT a personal escort for the lead cyclist. It is the responsibility of the lead cyclist to know the course and NOT follow the lead motorcycle outside course boundaries; even the lead motorcycle momentarily departs the actual course.

    WHERE TO RIDE ON THE ROADWAY AND BICYCLE SEPARATION

    • At all times AVOID the Centerline area of the roadway. That is the primary path of travel for the Race Officials, Emergency Vehicles (Police, Fire, Ambulance, etc.), and normal vehicular traffic.
    • Except when passing, you must ride in single file with a minimum of three (3) bike lengths of separation.
      (That equals 18 feet minimum separation.) [See Figure #1]
    • Except when passing, you must ride to the OUTSIDE of the car lane, which is OUTSIDE of the fog line, and ON the shoulder of the road. In the absence of an adequate riding surface on the shoulder of the road, you must ride NEXT to the fog line, and always well away from the Centerline. [See Figure #2]
    • Cyclists may walk their bikes if necessary

    PASSING

    • Ride defensively. Be aware of road conditions, vehicular traffic & other conpetitors.
    • Overtaking riders must pass to the inside of the bike being passed (towards the Centerline), but NEVER cross the Centerline [See Figure #2].
    • No “splitting” or passing in-between 2 bikes is allowed. [DQ #3]
    • Absolutely NO DRAFTING or BLOCKING of another bike or any other vehicle is allowed.

      Note! Preventing or drastically slowing down the progress of any vehicle traffic on the road is also considered BLOCKING. This action only infuriates the driver to make irrational judgments which will compromise both the drivers and participant’s safety. They also complain to the City and/or County Government Agencies which could lead to the event not being able to obtain a permit for operation in the future.
    • Left lane riding – See Figure #3 and commentary under the heading:
      *** RIDING IN THE ON-COMING, LEFT-HAND LANE”
    INFRACTION NOTIFICATION The Head Referee’s (or his Representative’s) preliminary Infraction Report is posted at the Results Table at the event at the conclusion of the race. Final infraction and assigned penalties will be published by entrant number along with the results following each race on www.racecenter.com.PENALTIES WILL BE ASSESSED AT THE DISCRETION OF OUR RACE OFFICIALS.

    THE DECISION OF THE RACE OFFICIALS IS FINAL.

    NOTE: In General – During competition, referees do NOT give verbal warnings or any other type of notification of any infraction that your behavior may create.

    REMEMBER: Any communication from the Course Marshall to an athlete on the bike course is a one-way message. Don’t try and communicate back. It is not a discussion, or a negotiation, or a debate. The time for any questions or discussion with the Course Marshal or the Head Referee is after the race is over.

    The Standing 2-Minute Penalty

    At the discretion of our race officials a “Standing 2-minute Penalty” can be imposed. Standing penalties longer than 2-minutes can also be imposed. When instructed by the race official, the athlete is required to stop at the nearest safe location well clear of the other athletes as directed by the race official. The penalty time begins when the athlete stops. The athlete is not cleared to resume their race until instructed by the race official. Failure to comply with the instructions of the race officials is an automatic disqualification. [DQ #5]

    BIKE COURSE DISQUALIFICATIONS Definition -Disqualification means:

    • That “officially” you did not finish the race.
    • Specifically, that you did not finish the race in compliance with the Rules of Competition, or in other words, your cycling effort was compromised with either unsafe cycling practices or unfair cycling practices which provided you with an edge (a non-level playing field).
    • That you will NOT get your chip recorded times.

    You CAN be disqualified for any of the following:

    1. Missing any Handlebar End Plugs (HEPs).
      (Such safety violations are normally an automatic disqualification.)
    2. Crossing the Centerline.
      (Such safety violations are normally an automatic disqualification.)
    3. Passing to the outside of another rider.
      (Such safety violations are normally an automatic disqualification.)
    4. Unsportsmanlike Conduct – Any form of physical aggression or verbal abuse to anyone.
      (race officials, another participant, spectators, local residents, etc.)
    5. Failure to obey the Race Officials,Course Marshals and /or the Police.
    6. Littering on either the bike or the run courses.
      (Water bottles, energy gel packets, Inner tubes, CO2 cartridges, etc.)
    7. Failure to wear a bicycle helmet, or fasten the chinstrap of the helmet.
      ASTM or Snell approved helmets are Mandatory!
      Helmets must be securely fastened prior to removing your bike from its place on the bike rack.
    8. Hearing Impairments – Wearing or using anything that impairs your hearing or safety during the race is prohibited! This includes, but is not limited to, any music audio or communications devices, such as: iPods, cell phones, FM radios, 2-way radios, any type of audio earphones, text messaging devices, sound muffling acoustical ear muffs or plugs, etc
    9. Accumulating 3 or more penalties in the same event.
    10. Deliberately obscuring or discarding (including littering) your Entrant Number.
      (You are required to be body-marked and clearly display your Entrant Number before entering the bike transition area.)
    11. Outside Assistance is prohibited. No form of coaching, athlete pacing, escorting, or repair assistance (with the single exception of athlete shared parts or tools) is allowed during the race, during the swim, bike, or the run. Any mechanical or flat tire repairs must be performed by the individual athlete unaided. This prohibition also applies to unauthorized cars; non-athlete bicycles on the bike course, and no pedestrian pacers, coaches, or bicycles are allowed on the run course. Assisted athletes will be disqualified.

    BLOCKING

    • Participants shall be responsible for NOT blocking, charging*, obstructing, or interfering with the forward progress of another participant or motor vehicle (i.e.: residents who live in the area, police & fire, etc.). If you impede, or otherwise cause another rider to lose speed, or force a change in another rider’s line of travel, that is Blocking.
    • If you crowd the Centerline, cutting off other riders from the legal path to pass you, that is Blocking.
    • Failure to keep to the OUTSIDE of the roadway and well away from the Centerline (Impeding normal civilian vehicular traffic in an oblivious or inattentive manner) is also Blocking.
    • Time Penalties will be assessed for Blocking.
    • *Charging” (intimidation)
      Aggressive Proximity Intimidation – (Including, but not limited to: physical contact or the threat of imminent collision) will be ruled as “Unsporstmanlike Conduct” and WILL result in Disqualification. [DQ #4]

    DRAFTING**

    • The Drafting Zone (DZ) is the rectangular area surrounding every bicycle and begins at the leading edge of the front wheel of the bike in front of you. The DZ is 3 feet wide to both sides of the bike in front of you (That’s a total of 6 feet wide), and extends back 3 bike lengths behind each bicycle (That equals 18 feet of separation from the trailing edge of the front bicycle’s rear wheel to the leading edge of the trailing bicycle’s front wheel.). [See Figure #1]
    • Under NO circumstances are you allowed to be in the DZ for more than 15 seconds. You have ONLY 15 seconds in which to overtake and complete a pass, or you MUST drop back and move towards the OUTSIDE onto the shoulder of the road. After successfully completing a pass, you must move back OUTSIDE the car lane, OUTSIDE of the fog line, onto the shoulder of the road wherever possible, and always well away from the Centerline.
    • NOTE: The width of the drafting zone for the following bicycle is measured at the shoulder of the cyclist on the following bicycle, not the centerline of your tire. Unless YOUR WHOLE BODY is outside of the rectangle that defines the Drafting Zone, you are still in the drafting zone of the bike in front of you, and are still subject to the 15 second rule that limits how long you can stay in the draft of another bicyclist.NOTE: FALL-BACK RULE –
    • If you have just been passed, and the DZ envelops you, you are now responsible for the 15-second exposure envelop in the DZ. After 15 seconds you MUST be back at least 3 bike lengths (and be out of the DZ), or you MUST have completed re-passing, or Time Penalties will be assessed.

    Continuous Drafting

    If you are observed continuously drafting in excess of the maximum allowed 15 seconds – at 16 seconds you incur the first drafting infraction, at 31 seconds you incur the second drafting infraction, and at 46 seconds you incur the third infraction and you are DQed for 3 infractions in the same event. [DQ #9]
    ** “Drafting Trains” are prohibited! Any multiple of bikes (2 or more) using drafting techniques to increase their speed and reduce their course time will be assessed Double Time penalties!

    You are NOT allowed to work with one or more riders where you consistently stay within the drafting zone by bending or ignoring the 15 second rule as you are passed, and then you re-pass. Any technique of group acceleration and energy conservation by multiple bicycles is not reflective of an individual performance time, and represents an unfair competitive advantage. Repetitively relieving the lead bicycle that is breaking the wind for the following group of bicycles and then falling back only to re-take the lead in this cooperative group of two or more bicycles is NOT allowed under these Rules of Competition.

    RIDING SIDE BY SIDE

      Riding

    “Side by Side”

      is

    prohibited!

      Over time you both end up Blocking and Drafting.

    Dual Time Penalties will be assessed

      to

    all

      riders involved for both Blocking and Drafting for this behavior during the race.

    This is a MAJOR safety violation on the race course! And the major cause of impeding the progress of normal vehicular traffic on the road. Remember, when you ride in such a manner you do two things: (1) infuriate the driver to make irrational decisions placing both you (all the participants on the road) and the vehicle driver at a safety risk, and (2) give a bad reputation to all cyclists (and not just those in the event) where motorists are reinforced with the notion that roads are for vehicle traffic and bicycles get off my road!

    ***RIDING IN THE ON-COMING, LEFT HAND LANE

    On very rare occasions the route may require you to ride in the on-coming, left-hand lane.
    (This lane of travel is normally closed to vehicle traffic, but not always.)
    The requirement to ride to the OUTSIDE of the car lane, OUTSIDE of the fog line, on the shoulder of the road (wherever possible) and always well away from the Centerline STILL applies [Left lane riding – See Figure #3].

    BIKE COURSE PRESCRIBED PENALTY SCHEDULE
    PER OFFENCE

    First infraction = 2 minutes
    Second infraction = Additional 2 minutes (total of 4 minutes)
    Drafting trains = Double time penalties to ALL riders involved
    Riding side by side = Dual time penalties to ALL riders involved
    (blocking penalty + drafting penalty)
    3 infractions in the same event = Disqualification
    All major Safety violations = Disqualification
    Unsportsmanlike Conduct = Disqualification

    RELAY TEAMS

    In Duathlon / Triathlon, Relay Teams are a separate category of competition where the 3 disciplines are performed by 2 or 3 different persons, and a formal “hand-off” is required by means of physical contact at each point of transition from one discipline to the next.

    • The Hand-off:   Hand-off is defined as a touching of hands.
    • Location of the Hand-off:   By design, all AA Sports events that have Relay Teams, have a dedicated bike rack section cordoned-off within the bike transition area just for the Relay Teams. The Hand-off is done at the mouth of the cordoned-off area.
    • The Swim to Bike Hand-off:   The swimmer is required to exit the water and run to the mouth of the opening to the cordoned-off Relay Team bike rack section in the bike transition area. The bicyclist team member waits at the mouth of the opening to the cordoned-off Relay Team bike rack section in the bike transition area, bike in-hand, ready to go for their swimmer’s hand touch. The bicyclist then walks his/her bicycle across the timing mats to the mount line sign, at which point he/she mounts their bicycle, to begin riding the bike course.
    • The Bike to Run Hand-off:   The runner waits at the mouth of the opening to the cordoned-off Relay Team bike rack section in the bike transition area for their bicyclist hand touch. After the hand touch, the bicyclist re-racks their bicycle in the assigned number rack. The running relay team member begins from the mouth of the opening to the cordoned-off Relay Team bike rack section in the bike transition area.
    • The Run to Bike Hand-off:  The runner is required to go to the mouth of the opening to the cordoned-off Relay Team bike rack section in the bike transition area. The bicyclist team member waits at the mouth of the opening to the cordoned-off Relay Team bike rack section in the bike transition area bike in-hand ready to go awaiting their runner’s hand touch. The bicyclist then walks his/her bicycle across the timing mats to the “mount” line sign, at which point he/she mounts their bicycle, to begin riding the bike course.

    • Competitors may run or walk the run course.
    • Hearing Impairments Rule.
      The Hearing Impairments Rule applies throughout the competition, including the bike course and the run course. Wearing or using anything that impairs your hearing, or your ability to hear other athletes, and/or race officials, and ultimately undermines your safety during the race is prohibited! This includes, but is not limited to, any music audio or communications devices, such as: iPods, cell phones, FM radios, 2-way radios, any type of audio earphones, text messaging devices, sound muffling acoustical ear muffs or plugs, etc.Note! Not allowing headphones is both a safety issue as well as an issue of you not being distracted in a manner that impedes your ability to hear the instructions of the course marshals, or to hear the comments from competing athletes, or to focus on the directional signage clearly. Your full attention needs to be on the race. Disallowing headphones is not intended to be a punishment, but to keep you both safe and having all your mental faculties focused on the business at hand.
    • Runners are not to cut the road tangents. Runners are to run on the left side of the road (opposing traffic) at all times unless the course is marked (or course marshals instruct you) to take you to the right side of the road. This situation arises when running on the left side of the road will take you around a blind corner creating a hazardous situation for both the runner and any approaching vehicle.
    • Unregistered pace runners are not allowed on the course.
    • Race numbers must be worn and be visible from the front.
    • Any departure from the run course boundaries as designed and marked for any reason that does not conflict with the rules or fair competition requires the athlete must re-enter the course at the same point at which they left the course before resuming their running race.
    • Littering the course will result in disqualification. [DQ #6]

    Most athletes at any given event are guests in the area where the competition is being held. We have no right to prevent the progress of normal vehicle traffic, litter the roadway or verbally abuse the local residents (even if they instigate the verbally abusive encounter – i.e.: PLEASE be the diplomat and OUR goodwill ambassador.). The privilege of any event to continue to be granted a permit is a function of everyone involved. So remember to be courteous at all times, and show respect for the local residents and their property.

     

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