Rules for Road Racing

Rules for Road Racing

Rules for Road Cycle Races Attention all road cyclists. After clarification and consultation with DIER & Tasmania Police, the Board of Cycling Tasmania has unanimously agreed to promote, publicise and enforce the guidelines for road cycle races which are listed on the Tasmania Police website. Tasmania police issue the permit for our bike races and each bike race MUST be run in accordance with these guidelines.

Cycling Tasmania Commissaires have been instructed to enforce these rules. Sanctions in the form of warnings, fines, disqualifications or suspensions will be imposed. Road racing on open roads is a privilege, not a right. For those who don’t want to read these guidelines in full, a couple of the more important points have been listed below. 

Centreline Rule

Critical to the successful operation of a race enclosure is the application of rules regarding the road centreline. Where road races work with a rolling enclosure, riders are under strict rules to never cross the centreline of the road. Sanctions for crossing a centreline range from warning for accidental crossing, relegation or disqualification in the cycle race event, to suspension of a rider’s license. In larger races, the caravan requires significantly more police and Traffic Marshal support, which allows the use of a protected enclosure, in which the entire roadway is closed to traffic while the race passes. Riders are allowed the use of the full road, but must move to the left if race vehicles need to pass. Such enclosures require police support at the front and rear to open and close the road, with Traffic Marshal support on motorcycles, to maintain the closure within the “envelope” of the race. 

Start / Finish 

For most road cycle races, a desirable Start/Finish area has excellent visibility for monitoring the arrival of the racers and for advance control of traffic in the immediate area. The finish of a race often involves special preparation. In major races, sufficient width needs to be provided to allow riders to sprint safely, usually starting from a visible marker, 200 metres prior to the finish line and ending 200 metres past the finish. Riders must obey traffic regulations at the finish of a race and keep on the left-hand side of the roadway unless other traffic changes have been made as per the approved Traffic Control Plan (ie closed road). Unless full road closure is permitted, under no circumstance should any rider cross onto the incorrect side of the road. 

Advising Riders of Traffic Arrangements 

Prior to the race, the Commissaire must fully brief all riders on the road conditions on the race course and the traffic control arrangements that are in place. In particular, the Commissaire must inform all riders as to which parts of the course are closed to other traffic and which parts are not. All riders should also be reminded of their obligations under road traffic legislation and their obligations under the Centreline Rule. 

Design of Traffic Control Plans 

Appropriate warning signs are a vital component of any Traffic Control Plan. Compliance with Traffic Control Plans will take precedence over any operational or competitive expedience encountered in the conduct of a race. 

  • Traffic Marshal (includes Motor Cycle Marshal) Person responsible for providing direction to competitors, pedestrians and crowd control. Traffic Marshals DO NOT have the legal power to stop, hold or direct traffic on public streets. 
  • Traffic Controller A police officer or person with the legislative authority to give directions to drivers, pedestrians and other road users and who has been directed by a police officer to do the same.