Illegal Aid in a Marathon (Read 793 times)

    This is something that I was wondering about, but haven't actually seen in print before now. I just stumbled across this in the rules for a fall marathon that I was looking at:

     

    " One rule that many people aren't aware of is the rule of illegal aid. This is true in all races where they give awards. Runners need to use the aid stations only for their aid (or carry what they need with them). If you are getting water, gel, or any other aid from someone other than aid station workers, you are actually getting illegal aid. You are getting help that others in the race aren't able to get. Now, if you are just trying to finish, chances are people won’t notice that your spouse is meeting you every half mile and giving you the secret potion that you need. However, if you are vying for an age-group award, it may become an issue. Technically, according to USATF and RRCA rules (which are the rules we abide by), this is grounds for disqualification. The marathon committee’s hope is that everyone on the course will act with integrity and finish the race within these rules."


    Queen of 3rd Place

      I wonder about locals handing out stuff, hosing folks off etc. I've certainly taken an orange slice from a spectator from time to time.

       

      Speaking of illegal aid, we have a local gal who often races with her big dog. That dog sure does look like he's pulling her. She's currently the Master's Division women's leader. It kind of ticks me off, and I'm stunned that nobody in her division has complained.

      Ex runner

        I have been given bottles out on a course. At the time I did not know it was breaking the rules. I don't feel guilty about it, at all.

         

        To me, getting bottles out on the course is part of the tradition and history of marathoning. If it's explicitly stated as against the rules in a race, then I guess you shouldn't do it. But I don't think that you are violating the ethos of the sport by doing it.

         

        That last statement seems a bit over the top to me: "If you don't follow our rules, then you are not acting with integrity." Ok then.


        HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

          I wonder about locals handing out stuff, hosing folks off etc. I've certainly taken an orange slice from a spectator from time to time.

           

          Speaking of illegal aid, we have a local gal who often races with her big dog. That dog sure does look like he's pulling her. She's currently the Master's Division women's leader. It kind of ticks me off, and I'm stunned that nobody in her division has complained.

           

          Probably a lot of people don't really want to speak up about her cheating, or don't even care that much. It's always sad to see people cheat, but at low-key stuff like small road races, it is hard to get worked up about cheating here and there -- the ipodders cheat routinely, in my experience -- so it is probably best to just not care very much. Especially when it is not something blatant like skipping large sections of a race course.

          It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

          carlos49er


            wow, really. I thought elites had their own nutrition plans for races. Not just use whatever the race provides. I can't stand those Gu gels, feel like a dog licking peanut butter. Maybe they have their own elixirs delivered to the aid stations.


            CT JEFF

              -- the ipodders cheat routinely, in my experience --

               

              Hey guys - I saw a guy just today with the bib actually on his dog. I dont think he placed, but my dog is faster than me, and yes, my dog could assist me by pulling me forward (my dog is stupid, so it might not work out).

               

              As for Illegal aide, I think it would mainly fall onto team support. Like, my wife bringing me a sandwich. As for spectators who give out bottles of water, they arent waiting for Joe Smith, and then taking away the aide. The non-official water station may not have enough stock for everyone, but I dont see that as cheating. Just as if the aide station had ice at 10am, but didnt at 11am.

               

              I had raced 3 times or so before I even heard someone ask the race coordinator if earphones were allowed. So, how do the ipodders cheat routinely? Just like the illegal aide rule, it seems a good idea to inform yourself of the rules, but also not a bad idea for race coordinators to announce a rule here and there.

               

              Here are all the USA T&F rules: http://www.usatf.org/usatf/files/2c/2cf4ef89-b3f9-43fe-82d8-66b94f21c546.pdf

               

              Most dont apply to the races Ive been in.

              RUN SAFE.     Barefoot 1st: 6/9/13. PR: 5k=22:50 10k=47:46 HM 1:51. FM 4:28

               

              October 11 Sat 8am Hartford Marathon.

              November 15 Sat 12:30pm- Spartan Race with DW in Fenway

              Jan 1 Gordys First Race. 10k. Jan 18 Disneyland Star Wars HM 5:30am


              CT JEFF

                 Technically, according to USATF and RRCA rules (which are the rules we abide by), this is grounds for disqualification. 

                RRCA Runners Etiquette Brochure

                Because Manners Matter

                As participation in running continues to grow so does the need to educate everyone why manners matter on the run. The RRCA Runners Etiquette brochure is a full color, glossy four-fold brochure that is great for beginning running programs, marathon training programs, race bag stuffers, and more. The brochure outlines general running etiquette for road and trail running, the race start and on-course etiquette, aid station etiquette, and awards ceremony etiquette.

                The brochure is sold in lots of 100 or more for a modest fee of $30 per 100 brochures. Order your copies from the RRCA publication store today! The RRCA will gladly co-brand the brochure if your club, event, or running store for orders of 1000 copies or more. Contact Jean Knaack at execdir@rrca.org about co-branded orders.

                RUN SAFE.     Barefoot 1st: 6/9/13. PR: 5k=22:50 10k=47:46 HM 1:51. FM 4:28

                 

                October 11 Sat 8am Hartford Marathon.

                November 15 Sat 12:30pm- Spartan Race with DW in Fenway

                Jan 1 Gordys First Race. 10k. Jan 18 Disneyland Star Wars HM 5:30am

                  Hi - My name is Bill, and I have a problem.  I have taken/been offered aid at every race, and I usually don't get it just at aid stations either.  I can't control it, but it happens all the time and I accept it from people I don't even know, too - water, gel, encouragement, people giving directions, splits called out, offer of a free ride to the finish line (gasp) in a police car during a severe lightning storm - you name it.  So far, no one has caught me - or at least not turned me in.  Recent headline: "Swag bag constitutes evidence of theft and disqualification at local race".

                   

                  OK, I woke up and it was just a silly dream...but personally, I think it would be great if everyone in my age group ate and drank a lot during a race. That is, if I ever do a marathon. Wink

                  "I can do 440 in 220"    Half Fanatic #846    "90% of running is half mental"    If I collapse, please pause my Garmin

                   


                  Muddling through

                    I can't remember the specific race, but I believe one elite runner was DQed for taking a cup from her coach outside the aid station. Like the iPod rule, it's irrelevant to most runners who violate it and only a few feel strongly enough about it to complain about violations. Another frequent rule violation I see in crowded races is runners going up on the sidewalk which technically is leaving the course. In general that won't be cutting the course short unless they stay up there while taking the turns or curves on the course, but it does give them an advantage in not having to deal with the congestion.

                    2014 Goals: Run first trail ultra, first 100K, and see what I can do in a 24-Hour race

                      There's this race in the backwoods of TN, where it's a tradition that non runners pace some runners over the last few miles and finishers go back and run the slower folks in, thus possibly aiding the runners. The RD encourages this, thereby breaking the rules and maybe needs to be reminded that he is violating the integrity of this sport.

                        Cecil, you're definitley a threat to place in that marathon so just follow the rules!

                        I think they are a little overzealous sometimes but I'd rather they be than have an anything goes attitude since we all train hard for our races.

                         

                        I run the CIM every year and here are a couple of their rules from their website:

                         

                        • No unofficial assistance of any kind may be provided to entrants. This includes pacing by a coach, friend or family member, even if this person is officially entered.  The only pacers on the course are the officil CIM Pace Team Leaders.
                        • The only place an official entrant may receive food or fluids by anyone other than aid station personnel is within a few feet of the official aid stations.

                        I'm OK with getting aid anywhere on the course (and I would never turn in someone for that) but I lean towards it NOT being fair to be paced by someone else.  I finished 2nd in my AG at CIM last year and there's no way I'd bitch about the 2nd rule listed above but I might turn in #1 if he had been paced by someone else.  It's best just to follow the rules if you think you have a chance at placing.


                        Feeling the growl again

                          I'm not even sure age groupers should worry about this an awful lot...I can't say as a competitor I would get tweaked about someone taking a Gu or bottle.

                           

                          Also, not all races are USATF- or RRCA-sanctioned so their rules would not firmly apply.

                           

                          As for the USATF, frankly on this issue I don't think I really care for their rule as they have violated it themselves at one of their highest events -- the 2007 US Olympic Marathon Trials in New York.  They provided personal water bottles for the A qualifiers but not for the B qualifiers in the same race.  While the official story published may have differed, it was largely the stink that resulted from this that led to certain powers-that-be tightening down the standards so they wouldn't have to deal with the B qualifiers again (this conclusion taken from a conversation between one of the runners and the power-that-be).

                           

                          So if the governing body is going to provide differential support within the same championship race, I'm not going to slight an age-grouper for taking a Gatorade of a Gu from a family member on the course....As long as they don't mule or run along with them.

                          "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                           

                          spinach


                            I run the CIM every year and here are a couple of their rules from their website:

                             

                            • No unofficial assistance of any kind may be provided to entrants. This includes pacing by a coach, friend or family member, even if this person is officially entered.  The only pacers on the course are the officil CIM Pace Team Leaders.
                            • The only place an official entrant may receive food or fluids by anyone other than aid station personnel is within a few feet of the official aid stations.

                            I'm OK with getting aid anywhere on the course (and I would never turn in someone for that) but I lean towards it NOT being fair to be paced by someone else.  I finished 2nd in my AG at CIM last year and there's no way I'd bitch about the 2nd rule listed above but I might turn in #1 if he had been paced by someone else.  It's best just to follow the rules if you think you have a chance at placing.

                             

                            I don't understand what they mean by pacing here.  If I run a race with a friend to help them get a goal is that pacing? I would suppose it is.  How about if I pass someone I know near the end and tell them to stay with me to the finish?  Is that pacing?  What if i don't them but tell them to stay with me.  I do this a lot in 5ks  with high school kids who aren't used to running when they are tired in a race.

                            MrH


                              Speaking of illegal aid, we have a local gal who often races with her big dog. That dog sure does look like he's pulling her. She's currently the Master's Division women's leader. It kind of ticks me off, and I'm stunned that nobody in her division has complained.

                               

                              Is there anything in the rules about you releasing a squirrel when near her?

                              The process is the goal.

                              Men heap together the mistakes of their lives, and create a monster they call Destiny.

                                 

                                Is there anything in the rules about you releasing a squirrel when near her?

                                 

                                I don't have time to check now (on the way to work) but sounds like it should be okay as long as there's no pacing involved.

                                "I can do 440 in 220"    Half Fanatic #846    "90% of running is half mental"    If I collapse, please pause my Garmin