Sunday, April 4, 2010

Know Your Rules

I was re-reading the USA Rules of Road Racing. Chapter 3B deals with Rider Conduct.  Here is a Gem: 

"3B10. Foul Riding. A rider near the edge of a road who leaves a gap sufficient for an opponent to pass may not suddenly close the gap upon being overtaken [relegation or disqualification]." 

Bizarre little rule.  I guess if you are not near the edge of the road, then the rules does not apply.  How do you get redress if there is a 3B10 violation?  If it were me, I would point out the rider that Rule 3B10 provides that I must be let in.  However, I will say that my recent attempts to discuss interesting points during bike races with my competitors have had mixed results. 

You can read the rules of racing in the USA here. 


  1. I think some wording is missing.

    I think it might be"...upon being overtaken by another race."

    or something to that effect.

  2. Cascade Cyclist comments that a phrase is missing. His version makes sense. I wonder. His point is that when neutralized because a different field is overtaking, a rider can not take advantage of the lull and jump up to the wheel when there is a gap. But, usually, when being neutralized, the problem is the guy who has the gap. He or she will often keep racing while those who lag and are being overtaken by the oncoming field neutralize, giving the break an unfair advantage. On the other had, the rule makes no sense otherwise.

  3. Here is the explanation from Phil Miller. His is better. The rule in question really refers to sprinting - riders often like to spring a trap when sprinting near but not next to a fenceline. When a rider attempts to overtake in the gap, the lead rider will swing over and subtly impede the faster rider - often shutting them down completely. It doesn't take an abrupt move as cited in other rules to have a very dangerous situation result. A rider sprinting at the fence is not obligated to make way...a similar rule can be found in the track section under match sprinting "when riders are at or near full speed".

    So when watching huge Protour field sprints, note that the jury takes a harsher view of activity near the fence than they do to bumping in the center of the road. Big field crashes almost always involve a rider chopped into the fence, and then rebounding back into the peloton