2016 sees the first update to the British Triathlon rule book since May 2013, and brings several updates to the competition rules to ensure everyone can continue to compete in a safe and fair environment.
If you’re competing in a Triathlon listed on the British Triathlon Website your competing in a permittted event and the following rule changes will apply. Some organisations such as Ironman/Challenge do not go through the BTF permitting processses or have their own rules so its always worth checking prior to your event what rules you are competing under.
If this is your first triathlon its worth having a quick read of the rules or attending one of our free preperation mornings where we will take you through the process of preparing for a triathlon event, setting up in transition and the rules of competing.
What are the main changes to the proposed Competition Rules in 2016?
Some of the key rule changes likely to affect competitors that have been made for 2016 onwards are:
Appeal fees are now £30 with all proceeds going to the Triathlon Trust, so if you’ve been disqualified for drafting and felt wronged you can rest easy knowing the money is going to a good cause.
Personal Recording Equipment
Personal video recording devices are not permitted on course so no gopro’s.
The most substantial change to the Rulebook is to move inline with ITU and allow for draft legal sprint distance events.
It is expected that the majority of races will remain draft illegal but as time gos by you will find more and more events becoming draft legal. This will mean competitors needing to get used to racing in close proximity to one another and perhaps working on their bike handling and control.
For the moment all our races remain draft illegal and the draft zones have slightly increased with the 2016 revisions.
For Standard/Olympic distance and shorter events there is now a 10 metre (increased from 7m) zone, with 20 seconds allowed for one competitor to pass through the draft zone of another.
For Middle and Long distance races, a 12 metre zone must be maintained, with 25 seconds allowed for a competitor to pass through.
Barefoot running – this is now permitted, however the competitor remains solely responsible and must contact the Event Organiser beforehand to ascertain whether the run course is suitable to be done barefoot. Children are not permitted to run barefoot in any race.
Another big change affecting all competitors is boxes in transition – whilst large boxes/bags can be used to bring necessary items into the transition area, only a small soft-sided bag or rucksack can remain, unless boxes are provided by the Event Organiser.
Some organisers may provide an area to one side of transition in which bags can be left as we expect that competitors may travel some distance from their car to transition and lugging everything back and forth can quickly waste valuable race day energy.
It is the responsibility of the competitor to ensure that any bag used in transition does not impede other competitors.
Team Relay Rules
Helmets must not be worn in relay exchange zones; instead they must remain on the bike before and after relay tagging. Expect many a comedy moment coming off the bike to tag the runner.
Changes to Penalties
Nobodies a fan of penalties and as event organisers we hate having to impose them on competitors but sometimes they are neccessary to maintain a fair event. Key changes to Penalties include.
Mount/dismount line infringements – a stop and go penalty will be awarded where possible, if however this cannot be given a one-minute time penalty will be awarded.
Helmet infringements – a one-minute time penalty will be awarded if helmet not attached before making contact with the bike, or removal of helmet before the bike it racked.
Drafting in a Middle or Long distance race – first and second incidents incur a five-minute time penalty; the third incident will result in disqualification.
Littering – a stop and go penalty will be awarded providing the infringement is corrected; if not, the competitor will be disqualified.
If your competing for the first time or need a refresh on any of the rules you can view the full Rulebook over on the British Triathlon Website.