A total of five (5) races shall typically be held: women’s endurance (2 women), men’s endurance (2 men), women’s sprint (2 women), men’s sprint (2 men), and co-ed sprint (2 men and 2 women).
11.1 RACE RULES
The following general rules apply to the paddlers:
- Teams shall use the same individuals in both the preliminary and final heats of any particular race.
- In the event that a paddler is injured prior to a preliminary race, a substitution may be made. This substitute paddler shall be one of the original five (5) of the same gender registered on the team.
- In the event of an injury that prevents a paddler from further competition after the preliminary race has been completed, the injured person or a substitute shall be in the canoe in subsequent races. However, this person or these persons shall not be allowed to paddle. The substitute passenger shall be one of the original five (5) of the same gender registered on the team.
- In the event that a team cannot field the proper number of paddlers of the required gender, substitute passengers of opposite gender shall be allowed, but these substitutes shall not be allowed to paddle. Substitute passengers shall be of the team’s registered participants.
Teams competing in the distance races shall compete against the clock in a timed single event. All other races shall include timed preliminaries and finals. The top five canoes advance to the grand final and the next five canoes advance to the petite final on the basis of qualifying times in the preliminaries, grand final and a petite final based on the top ten (10) qualifying times from the preliminaries. Points shall be awarded based on the finish times in the finals. In the event that finals cannot be conducted or the host school determines before the race competition starts that separate finals heats will not be run, the preliminary times shall be used as the final times. If a grand or petite final entry becomes disqualified, scratched, or cannot finish the final, all positions below that finisher shall move up one place in the ranking. This includes the next highest qualifier from the preliminaries.
In a situation where all of the race events cannot be conducted (for example, the distance races were completed but the sprint races could not be completed), the race scores (Section 13.4) for all of the completed races shall be accounted for in the overall competition score. By no means should the race scores be adjusted to account for races not held/completed.
In a situation where none of the race events can take place, the overall competition score shall be based solely on the results of the academic portion of the competition (Design Paper, Oral Presentation, and Final Product) with the maximum possible score being 75 points.
11.1.1 Conference Competitions
Depending on the number of entrants at the conference competitions, host schools shall make a decision on having grand and petite finals for the various sprint races. The host school shall inform all teams prior to the competition if both preliminaries and finals will be held or if the sprint races will be based on the best times in the preliminaries.
11.1.2 Lane Position and Heat Assignments
Lane position and heat assignments shall be randomly selected before the competition begins and shall be provided at registration. Course and turn directions shall be announced as soon as they can be determined by the course layout and site conditions. The regional and national host school shall provide a diagram or map to the participants outlining the layout of the course prior to the races.
Commonly accepted rules of sportsmanship shall prevail. There shall be strict enforcement of racing etiquette by the CNCCC and the judges. Any canoe willfully interfering with the performance of any other canoe or participant in a race shall be automatically disqualified. Any use of paddles to intentionally strike at an opponent’s canoe, or at any person, shall be cause of disqualification of the offending team from the event. Good sportsmanship, cooperation, fellowship, and the spirit of competition shall be strictly adhered to.
Spectators interfering with the performance of contestants shall be asked to leave and may cause the disqualification of affiliated contestants. Contestants or spectators interfering with the performance of the competition, judges’ ruling, or protests, may cause the disqualification of the affiliated school.
In situations where there is lane interference and/or when canoes collide, paddlers should immediately hold paddles above their heads and discontinue the race. If interference occurs at the Conference Competition, the team captain shall appeal directly to the head judge. During the National Competition, a team captain will make their appeal to the appointed CNCCC member who will confer with the judges. Once presented with the appeal, the judges shall:
- Disqualify a team that has willfully interfered with another team. (If the interference is not deliberate, then the team should not be disqualified).
- Disqualify a team that willfully fails to adhere to course boundaries resulting in interference with another canoe. (If the interference is not deliberate, then the team should not be disqualified).
- Allow any team(s) directly affected by interference the option to rerun the heat in a timed event. Times from the rerunning of the heat shall be used as the official time for the heat. Heats shall be rerun after a minimum of ten (10) minutes to allow paddlers to prepare themselves.
Requests for rule interpretations and/or appeals during Conference Competition shall be presented to the Conference Head Judge by the designated team captain(s). Requests for rule interpretations and/or appeals during the National Competition shall be presented to the CNCCC by the designated team captain(s). Such request or appeals must be lodged before the start of the next heat or in the case of the distance races, before the next three (3) canoes finish the race. Appeals shall be made by a team captain. The decisions made by the judges and/or CNCCC concerning all aspects of the race and judging shall be final. Conference head judges may contact the CNCCC in order to clarify rule interpretations and to discuss appeals that have been lodged by team captains.
11.2.1 Power Rescue Boat
A powered rescue boat shall be on the water during all the races. If a powered rescue boat is not available, the races shall not take place.
11.2.2 Safety Director
A safety director shall be located in a strategic position to observe the activities, especially those near the starting and docking area. The safety director is responsible for stopping all activities involving violations of any of the safety rules.
11.2.3 Canoe Safety
All canoes shall be able to pass a flotation test before entry in the races (Section 2.10.2); otherwise, it shall not be permitted to compete. If flotation materials are necessary to pass the flotation test, the canoe shall contain the same flotation materials during the race (Section 2.10.3).
Any entry deemed unsafe or hazardous by the judges shall not be permitted in the water unless corrective measures are taken. If corrective measures are not or cannot be made the entry shall be disqualified from further competition. If repairs must be made to an entry prior to any race, the judges may allow the entry to reschedule for a later heat, but prior to the next event.
11.2.4 Paddler Safety
All paddlers shall be competent swimmers. Paddlers shall wear US Coast Guard-approved life jackets at all times while in a canoe during competition and/or practice. Wet suit buoyancy pads shall not be used as a substitute for the Coast Guard approved life jacket. Containers or objects not required for canoe operations shall not be permitted in canoes.
11.3 RACE COURSE
11.3.1 General Requirements
The bow of the canoe shall remain the bow of the canoe throughout each race in consideration of a successful negotiation of a turn or finish buoy.
Different colored buoys shall mark the racecourse lanes. The Endurance and Sprint courses must meet the alignment, distance, spacing, and turns as noted in Sections 11.3.2 and 11.3.3, respectively. Figure 11.1 and Figure 11.2 provide recommended course layouts; however, these are subject to site-specific conditions and limitations.
11.3.2 600-meter Endurance Course
The endurance course shall consist of the following subject to site conditions:
- A total of 600 meters in distance with a minimum of two (2) turns in addition to the straight portions of the course.
At the National Competition the CNCCC reserves the right to modify the race and the course. All revisions to this race will be announced no later than March 1, 2012.
11.3.3 200 and 400-meter Sprint Course
A sprint course shall consist of the following subject to site conditions:
- Men’s and women’s sprint course will be a straight course 100 meters out, a 180-degree turn, and 100 meters back.
- The co-ed race will be a 400-meter race and shall consist of two (2) laps of the sprint course.
- Lanes shall be no narrower than 15 meters.
11.4 RACE PENALTIES
A buoy is successfully negotiated when the entire canoe passes on the proper side of the buoy. A canoe may touch a buoy but the top of the buoy must stay above the waterline on the proper side of the canoe until the canoe has entirely passed. A canoe’s time shall not be considered final until all buoys have been properly negotiated. The following corresponding penalties shall be assessed as defined below:
- A canoe that crosses the finish line in the wrong lane shall be assessed a 30-second time penalty for that particular event.
- All turn buoys must be properly negotiated or the team shall be disqualified for that particular event. Teams must properly negotiate all turn buoys in the endurance race. A sprint turn must be negotiated within the assigned lane.
- For a team to successfully finish a given race, the bow of the canoe must cross the finish line with the same number of paddlers (in or touching the canoe) with which the race began.
- Safety officials reserve the right to use their best judgment to remove a swamped canoe and paddlers from the racecourse if the situation warrants.
Figure 11.1 – Sprint Race Course Layout
Note: Figure above depicts that canoes must go up one lane and upon negotiating the turning buoy will go down the lane directly next to it (i.e., a canoe should not finish the race in the same lane it started in).
Figure 11.2 –Endurance Race Course Layout (Example Layout)