Need to Know NICA Rules:
If you haven’t dived into the NICA Rulebook…. now is the time. Link HERE
You are responsible for all the rules. Please read at least this excerpt. You can save the whole rule book to your phone or tablet in case you have a question at the race. Of course, reach out to coaches if you have questions.
Common Need to Know Rules:
2.17. USADA BANNED SUBSTANCES
Student-athletes are subject to all U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) rules pertaining to anti-doping. The use of performance enhancing substances, as listed by USADA, will result in the immediate disqualification from one full season or the equivalent number of races spanning two seasons. A list of banned substances is available at:
2.19. LIST OF OTHER BANNED SUBSTANCES (B-LIST):
Caffeine is an addictive substance that enhances performance. NICA leagues deem caffeinated products as inappropriate for young student-athletes. Caffeinated sport products such as bars, gels, and sport drinks, are banned from NICA league races, practices, and other activities. The consumption of soda and coffee products containing caffeine by student-athletes at NICA league races and camps is banned.
Creatine, Guaraná Root, and Taurine are also substances banned from consumption at NICA league races and camps.
WEARING HELMETS STRICTLY ENFORCED:
Student-athletes must wear an approved helmet at all times. See below for the list of approved helmet standards. Under no circumstances should a student be on their bicycle without a helmet fastened to their head, even when riding a very short distance. Students must also keep their helmet on when walking or running on the course with a mechanical (see Rule 2.1). In addition: • Helmet straps must be adjusted to the extent that two fingers can be pushed under the strap, whereas three fingers would be difficult. • Helmets should not have any cracks or dents from previous falls or mishandling. • Helmets should be the correct size with little to no side-to-side or front-to-back movement. • Full-face helmets are not allowed without written permission from the Rules and Appeals Committee. • The helmet rules are not applicable to riders warming up on bikes that are securely mounted to stationary trainers.
4.5. HANDLEBAR END PLUGS AND STEM CAPS REQUIRED:
For safety reasons, handlebar end plugs and stem caps are required.
4.7 PENALTY FOR OUTSIDE ASSISTANCE:
Flat tires and mechanical problems should be repaired by the racer, and the racer must carry their own tools, tubes, etc. If outside assistance, parts or tools, are required, a five-minute penalty will be assessed. The student- athlete must report an occurrence of outside assistance before the end of the protest period that precedes the award ceremony. The student-athlete must [self] report to a Scoring Official, Course Marshal or other Race Official. If a student-athlete does not self-report the penalty may be doubled.
IMPORTANT NOTE: It’s important that student athletes understand that they can ask for assistance in order to stay in the race, but that they must self report to a race official in order to receive the time penalty. No racer should leave the race due to a mechanical issue for fear that requesting outside assistance is not allowed.
RULE 4.8. SWITCHING BIKES:
Student-athletes must complete the entire race on the same bicycle upon which the race was begun. A 10-minute penalty applies for switching bicycles in a race.
RULE 4.10. FOOTWEAR:
Student-athletes must wear appropriate footwear. Footwear must be fully enclosed and fastened with either straps, buckles, or laces.
RULE 4.12. NUMBER PLATES:
Student-athletes must affix an official NICA league number plate to their bikes at NICA league races. The number plate should be attached with at least three fasteners and must be on the bike at all times before and after competing, including the pre-ride, and should also remain on the bike at anytime the student is riding at the event.
6.15 PASSING SLOWER STUDENT-ATHLETES:
When overtaking a rider on the racecourse, the passing rider is encouraged to do so respectfully and must:
Pass only when safe to do so and without rider contact;
Call out “On your left” or “On your right” or use other similar language to indicate whether the pass will be on the other rider’s left or right side.
Passing in a manner that compromises the safety of other riders will not be tolerated.
6.16 BIKE PUSHERS MUST YIELD:
Racers riding bicycles have the right of way over racers pushing bicycles. When practical, racers pushing shall stay on the least rideable portion of the trail when being passed. A racer pushing or carrying his/her bicycle can overtake a racer riding their bicycle provided they do not interfere with the student-athlete’s progress
6.17 LAPPED STUDENT-ATHLETES MUST YIELD:
Lapped riders must yield to overtaking student-athletes. Lapped riders being passed must move over as quickly, efficiently and as safely as possible.
6.18. LEADER OWNS THE TRAIL BUT CANNOT BLOCK:
In the event two student-athletes are vying for position, the leading student-athlete does not have to yield his/her position to the challenging student-athlete. However, a student-athlete may not bodily interfere with the intent to impede another student-athlete’s progress. Traditional rules of racing apply: the leading student-athlete owns the trail.
6.19. LAPPED STUDENT-ATHLETES MAY BE PULLED:
Lapped student-athletes may be pulled from the race at the finish line. At the league director’s or a race official’s discretion, a student-athlete may be pulled from a race at any location on the course due to circumstances that make it unsafe for the student-athlete to proceed. Student-athletes that are pulled out of the race must not continue and will be placed according to their position at the time they are pulled.
6.20. TIME LIMITS MAY BE IMPOSED:
Student-athletes may be asked to withdraw at the finish line after time limits have been reached. Race officials reserve the right to determine these time limits at anytime. Time limits may be imposed for reasons that include, among others: Safety, heat, cold, rain, muddy conditions, clearing the course, and relieving course marshals. Course closures
may be announced at anytime and do not need to be announced in advance.
If a student-athlete makes the time cutoff but does not complete the final lap due to a mechanical, crash, or other reason, it is considered a DNF.
Race Officials may also, if deemed appropriate, opt to pull an individual student-athlete who appears to be overheated, hypothermic, overly exhausted, or in anyway injured, over-stressed, or at risk of injuring themselves.
6.21. CUTTING THE COURSE:
Except in the case of injury, NICA racers are not allowed to cut the course, ride off course, or engage in any other behavior that would indicate an intention of unfair play.
7.14. MATCHING JERSEYS REQUIRED
Teams must have matching jerseys for their student-athletes and all team members must race wearing their team jerseys.