USA Triathlon Multisport Rules


This button will take you to a page containing all the USA Triathlon rules that apply to our event at Texas City. Below this button are the most commonly violated rules. Please know that while we do list a lot of the rules on this page, we do not list ALL of them. It is the athlete's responsibility to know and abide by ALL the rules.




The rules set forth in this section are constructed to supplement the USA Triathlon Competitive Rules and shall apply to all competition sanctioned Events. For any issue not specifically addressed in these Youth Rules, the relevant USAT Competitive Rules shall apply.

Penalties. The type of penalty for violating a specific rule is listed at the end of the rule as either “TP” for “Time Penalty” or “DQ” for Disqualification. Time penalties shall be administered according to the table and are added to the participant’s final time.

  • 1st Offense - 1:00 minute TP
  • 2nd Offense - 2:00 minutes TP
  • 3rd Offense - DQ
  • All participants shall compete based upon their age on December 31 of the year of the event.

  • All participants must be members of USA Triathlon. Membership in USA Triathlon is available to all persons, in good standing with USA Triathlon who submit a completed application, pay the required membership fee, and comply with all the requirements determined by USA Triathlon to be applicable to Membership.

  • Race officials reserve the right to require proof of age from each participant in the form of a birth certificate or other official proof of age document. Failure to produce a proof of age document may result in disqualification from the event.
  • Proper swimwear must be worn. DQ

  • No flotation devices of any kind may be used during the swim. DQ

  • No artificial propulsive devices such as fins, paddles, or gloves may be used. Goggles or face masks are required (race specific rule). Snorkels are technically allowed but not encouraged. DQ

  • Swimmers must be able to complete the entire course using any stroke. Swimmers may not make forward progress by pulling on lane ropes, swim gutters or any other inanimate object, or by making forward progress of any kind by holding onto a moving kayak, board, or boat. TP

  • If provided by the event, swimmers must wear the assigned swim cap throughout the swim. TP

  • Participants must follow instructions given by lifeguards and officials. TP or DQ at official’s discretion.

  • USAT rules state that competitors may wear wetsuits if the water temperature is 78 degrees or lower. USAT rules also state that if the water temperature is between 78.1 – 83.9 degrees, competitors may wear wetsuits but will NOT be eligible for awards. This includes shorts made of neoprene.
  • The transition area is open to participants, only. When transition closes for competition to begin, only participants and race officials may enter transition. Finishers may not retrieve gear until all participants have finished the cycling portion and have begun the run and the race director allows finishers into transition. TP or DQ at official’s discretion

  • Competition apparel (shoes, socks, shirts) must be placed next to the bicycle at the rack and may not be taken to the pool or open water swim start area. TP

  • Bicycles must be placed on the rack according to the directions given by race officials. Bicycles may be racked in the assigned area, by the handlebars, the seat or by using the kickstand. Bikes placed on kickstands must be in the designated area, in line with other bikes, and may not extend out into the lane of travel or lean purposefully on any other competitors equipment. TP

  • Participants may not interfere with other participants’ gear. If you need/thing something moved that does not belong to you get a race official, course marshal or race staff member. TP or DQ at official’s discretion

  • After completing the cycling portion, participants must return bicycles to an upright position in the same assigned location before beginning the run portion. TP

  • No riding bicycles in transition. Participants may walk or run their bicycles in and out of transition but cannot mount their bike until they are officially past the designated mount line (outside transition) and they must dismount before the dismount line. The area(s) between each participant’s bike rack and the mount/dismount lines is considered a strict no ride zone. TP

  • Event specific Rule - All athletes must claim their bikes by the time posted as the “Event Conclusion.” TP or DQ at Race Director or Transition Director’s discretion.
  • Each helmet must be inspected for, and contain a US-CPSC sticker. The CPSC standard is a legal requirement for any helmet manufactured for the US market. It was adopted by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, and is mandatory for all helmets manufactured for sale in the U.S. after 1999. So European and off-brand helmets do not have the sticker. Everyone that wishes to take part in the race must have a helmet with the inspection sticker inside. DQ

  • The bicycle must be road worthy and in safe operating condition. DQ

  • The bicycle shall have two wheels. DQ

  • There must be at least one working brake on each of the two wheels. DQ

  • The bicycle may be on-road, off-road, or a combonation style. No recumbent style bicycles are allowed. DQ

  • All handlebars ends shall be solidly plugged. DQ

  • All participants must wear a tinted or clear pair of sunglasses OR a built-in helmet shield. This is a race specific requirement. DQ

  • Race officials reserve the right to disallow any bicycle deemed unsafe. Any unusual bicycle must be approved by race officials prior to competition.
  • Cyclists must wear a helmet approved by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. DQ

  • The helmet must be securely fastened prior to mounting the bicycle and at all times while riding the bicycle. The helmet may not be unfastened and removed until the participant has completely dismounted. DQ

  • Cyclists shall wear shoes at all times while on the bike (cycling or running shoes are allowed). DQ

  • Cyclists shall ride in a safe manner, which includes: a. Riding on the right side of the lane; TP b. Riding no closer than 3 bike lengths distance behind a leading cyclist; TP c. Passing on the left of the slower cyclist; TP d. Riding in a straight line without swerving, veering, or blocking the forward progress of other cyclists. DQ

  • Race officials may remove and disqualify any cyclist who appears to ride or behave in an unsafe manner.
  • Participants shall run or walk the entire course. DQ

  • Participants shall wear shoes at all times while on the run course. TP

  • No personal audio devices or headsets may be used or carried during any portion of the event. DQ
  • Unsportsmanlike conduct on the part of participants or their supporters will not be allowed. Participants must treat others with courtesy and respect. No rude, abusive, or discourteous language or behavior will be tolerated. DQ

  • Participants must complete the prescribed course in its entirety. While this obviously means course cutting it also means veering off course and running more than is given. Even those that do more than the course has marked are still disqualified. It doesn’t matter how you deviate from the marked course, just that you did. KNOW YOUR COURSE BEFORE YOU ARRIVE. DQ

  • No personal audio devices or headsets may be used or carried during any portion of the event. DQ

  • No unauthorized assistance of any kind is allowed. Non-participants may not run or ride a bicycle with a participant nor may they provide participants any food, fluid, or equipment aid during competition. This also means that the participants and/or their supporters may not set out (abandon) hydration or nutrition on the course. TP All aid must come from water stops, officials, medical, safety, staff, SAG or volunteers. Any serious situations that may arise and need the immediate assistance of non-participants will still result in a TP or DQ but should be the last thing on anyone’s mind if the situation is that serious it warrants immediate assistance (ie medical emergencies).

  • Race numbers must be displayed at all times. Swimmers must be clearly body-marked, cyclists must display their bike numbers, and runners must wear their bib numbers. TP

  • LITTERING IN ANY WAY IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED. Whether intentional or accidentally (abandonment) leaving anything behind can potentially endanger other athletes and/or result in the event not being permitted the following year. DQ Please be a Good Steward of the venue(s) so that we may all be welcomed back with open arms.

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