Important rules changes at 2021 AGNC
by USA Triathlon
We are excited to announce we will implement World Triathlon-aligned on-course penalty notification, penalty structure, and draft zones at the upcoming 2021 Toyota USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships.
Why are we making this change?
Customer service to our athletes is a priority and we have listened to your voices. Athletes have made it clear they want to know on the course and during the race if they have received a penalty rather than being notified once they have finished their respective race. Additionally, it is important to move toward rules alignment with other triathlon governing bodies to ensure consistency for athletes regardless of where they are racing.
What are the changes?
- Athletes will be notified of penalties on-course via the international standard blue card/yellow card system and will be notified if they have received a penalty as soon as safely possible. When an athlete is penalized, the official will show the appropriate card for the violation, identify the athlete by their race number, and instruct the athlete to stop as required. Ex. “Athlete #167, blue card. Stop at the penalty tent.”
- Bike course penalties will be served in a designated penalty tent. All other penalties will be served on the course as stand downs.
- In keeping with World Triathlon international standards for Sprint and Olympic distance races, the bicycle draft zone will be 10 meters long by 2 meters wide. A maximum of 20 seconds will be allowed to pass through the zone of another athlete.
- For both events, athletes will be subject to disqualification for the following infractions: accumulating two Blue Cards for drafting; failing to stop as required prior to crossing the finish line. Every attempt will be made to notify all athletes subject to possible disqualification on site and prior to awards. Those athletes will have a full opportunity to discuss the circumstances with the Head Referee for the race prior to a final determination of the penalty.
Should a Blue Card be shown for drafting on the bike course, a penalty will be served for 2:00 minutes in the Bike Penalty Tent. A Yellow Card will be issued for all other violations other than disqualifications. A Yellow Card violation will result in a :15-second time penalty to be served in the location as outlined below.
Sprint Distance Race
Should a Blue Card be shown for drafting on the bike course, a penalty will be served for 1:00 minute in the Bike Penalty Tent. A Yellow Card will be issued for all other violations other than disqualifications. A Yellow Card violation will result in a :10-second time penalty to be served in the location as outlined below.
Race Segment / Penalty Served
- Start / T1 – spot of infraction
- Swim / T1 – spot of infraction
- Transition 1 / Warning at T1 – spot of infraction
- Bike / Bike Penalty Tent
- Transition 2 / Warning at T2 – spot of infraction
- Run / Warning and/or Time Penalty on the Spot
A USA Triathlon Officials tent will be used as the Penalty Tent with signage marking the approach to the penalty tent. Any athletes that have received a penalty will have their race number written on the penalty board at the penalty tent. Athletes who believe they may have received a penalty should stop at the penalty tent to confirm if their number is on the penalty board.
There will be static visual aids to help athletes understand the longer draft zone as well as video instructional content available online and at athlete check-in to ensure athletes understand these changes and have an opportunity to seek clarification.