Rules of Engagement

I’ve just spent a fun hour reading through the changes to British Triathlon’s competition rules for 2017. If you want to pore through it, there’s a link here. Here are the changes that I noted down as I read through it:

There’s an official ban on “any device that will distract the athlete from paying full attention to their surroundings.” I presume they are officially saying no Ipods, but I know some runners who look at their Garmin so often it might come under that heading.

Disc brakes are now allowed on bikes for any and all non drafting events, but there is bad news for hipsters: “Both wheels must be free wheels” Fixies are forbidden!

Ah, my favourite section… nudity. I love how they get really specific on the detail here. Take note of this on zips for men’s trisuits: “For middle and long distance events: the zipper can be undone to the point no lower than the breastbone (sternum) during the competition, with the exception of the last 200m of the run (or on the finish straight), when it needs to be zipped up. For sprint and standard distance events: the zipper must be completely fastened at all times.”

Speaking of the last 200m of the run, they have also added a spoilsport and frankly mean spirited rule: “Competitors can’t be accompanied by any noncompeting person in the finish chute.” So all those tear jerking pictures of knackered Outlaws finishing hand in hand with their kids are a thing of the past? I hope not.

Last one for you to make special note of: “Avoid displaying any kind of demonstration of political, religious or racial propaganda.” So no matter how upset you are about changes to the Legal Aid funding formula, don’t wear a t-shirt with a slogan on, or you’ll be out on your ear.