RULES & PROCEDURES
Also see the FAQ page for additional information
Don't forget any of your gear including:
PLEASE NOTE THAT EARBUDS, CELL PHONES, I-PODS, WALKMANS, RADIO, CD PLAYERS OR ANY OTHER FORM OF MUSIC PLAYING DEVICES ARE STRICTLY PROHIBITED ANYWHERE AND ANYTIME BEFORE AND DURING THE EVENT. THIS INCLUDES IN THE PARKING LOT, TRANSITION AREA, BEACH AND SWIM COURSE, BIKE AND RUN COURSE. IF YOU ARE SEEN USING ONE OF THESE DEVISES, YOU WILL BE IMMEDIATELY DQ'D AND NOT ALLOWED TO PARTICIPATE, NOR REFUNDED YOUR ENTRY. IT IS IMPERATIVE YOU HEAR ALL PRE-RACE INSTRUCTIONS AND BE AWARE OF WHAT'S GOING ON AROUND YOU DURING ALL PARTS OF THE EVENT.
The transition area opens at 5:30 AM and regardless of your wave, you AND your equipment MUST be checked into transition no later than 7:10 AM. The bike racks will be numbered on a "range" basis (ie: 1 - 16, 17 - 32, etc). You must rack your bike and place your equipment in your designated numbered area. You must also return your bike to the same location in transition after the bike portion, before your run. You will NOT be able to re-enter, nor remove your bike and/or equipment until the last bicyclist is back from the bike course. (Everyone pays the same entry and regardless of speed, deserves the same clear passage in the transition area.) Your equipment must be removed from transition by 1:00 PM.
THE EVENT IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR LOST OR STOLEN ITEMS.
ONLY participants and event volunteers are allowed in the transition area.
Extra equipment (wheels, 2nd helmet, 2nd wetsuit, etc) will not be allowed in the transition area. Transition is fenced and secured. Gear bags over 32" will not be allowed in transition. Current ANSI, CPSC or SNELL approved bicycle helmets are required during the biking portion of the event. You will be prohibited or removed from the course if you don't have a (or an approved) helmet (NO REFUNDS). Helmets MUST be buckled in place during ALL aspects of the bike, including when walking your bike in the transition area. FAILURE TO HAVE YOUR HELMET BUCKLED WILL RESULT IN A "DQ". You must WALK your bike in the racks and walk or jog with your bike in the transition lanes to the designated mount and dismount areas of the transition area.
RACE NUMBERS, TIMING CHIP AND BODY MARKING:
Your race number must be visible on your body, bike frame and bike helmet. Your race bib number must be worn on your race jersey, shirt or race belt during the run. Participants are required to wear the provided timing chip strapped to their ankle throughout the entire race. Body marking will be written on the shoulders, lower quadriceps, calf and back of both hands.
NO CHIP = NO RACE SPLITS OR FINISH TIME
The first wave of the olympic swim starts at 7:45 AM SHARP (unless there's a weather delay). Be at the start on time, or you won't race. Each wave is designated by event (sprint or olympic), gender and age group. Waves will be designated by a specific color swim cap. If you are assigned to a specific wave, do NOT change waves. If you lost your cap, see a race official at the swim start to get a replacement cap. Wave starts will be posted at the venue and in your athlete instructions email prior to the race.
With a beach start, you will swim out approximately 100 meters, then swim North, parallel with the shoreline in front of the Grand Haven State Park. You should position yourself at the start according to your swim ability (faster swimmers in the front). You are prohibited from intentionally striking or swimming over another swimmer. Failure to heed warnings and commands of an official or lifeguard will result in a "DQ" and ejection from the event. The swim course will be overseen by 10 - 15 kayaks/SUP's, 3 - 4 wave runners, Sheriff boats with divers and 15+ lifeguards in the water with rescue tubes.
The water depth is between 6 to 10 feet and water temperature in July can fluctuate between 58 to 74 degrees. Wetsuits are encouraged during this event. if you are new to using a wetsuit, it is suggested you purchase or secure an "open water swimming specific" wetsuit from a reputable dealer and insure a proper fit. Heed the manufacturer's and dealer's suggestions and warnings. It is also suggested that you train in your wetsuit under supervision before using it in competition.
It is strongly suggested you have your bike properly fitted, inspected and tuned no less than 3 weeks prior to the event. Breakaway Bicycle and Fitness will be on site Sunday providing technical support. The bike leg takes place on city streets and township roads that are open to vehicular traffic. Although traffic will be relatively light and volunteers and police agencies will be assisting on the course, you need to stay highly alert at all times to your surroundings. It is always easy to get caught up in your cycling and the race itself, however, you NEED to be watchful of what's going on. This includes watching for vehicles, intersections, turn around area, fellow competitors, and paying attention to instructions from course volunteers. It is the athlete's responsibility to know the course and bike defensively.
Since the race shares the road with vehicular traffic, you are required to ride to the farthest right side of the roadway if you are not passing a fellow participant. You are ONLY to pass other riders on the LEFT. If you are not passing another rider, but still riding to the left, that is termed as "Blocking" and is a "DQ" offense. BY NO MEANS SHOULD YOU BE RIDING 2 OR 3 ABREAST ON THE ROAD. Drafting marshalls on motorcycles will be on the bike course and will strictly enforce rules, including "Drafting". Failure to heed the commands of an official will result in being "DQ'd" and ejection from the event. There may be areas on the bike course (transition, sharp turns, bumps, turnarounds, etc) where you will be given instructions. The instructions are for your safety and enjoyment. PLEASE LISTEN TO AND FOLLOW THOSE INSTRUCTIONS.
If you break down on the bike course, please get at least 6 feet off to the side of the road to tend to your repairs. If you're unable to repair your bike, you must remove yourself from the bike course. Vans or trucks will be circulating the course to bring you back to transition, at which time, you must turn in your timing chip and discontinue the race.
The run courses take you from the rear parking lot of the YMCA to the boardwalk and run along the scenic riverfront. Aid stations will be placed at approximately 1 mile intervals with water and Gatorade. The olympic run course is "2" laps of the sprint distance run course. The run finishes back at Mulligan's Hollow with a post race picnic and awards. Most of the run courses are on the boardwalk however, there are a few areas where you might run on a very small section of roadway. It is strongly suggested you keep your eyes open to all things around you and watch for vehicles or any other adverse conditions.