FAQs – Triathlon

Prior to the Race

The Swim Leg

The Bike Leg

The Run Leg

After the Race

 

Q. How do I edit my registration (change races, fix an error, etc.)?
A. It’s very easy to edit your registration info on Run Sign Up. Just follow the instructions found here. Back to the top.

Q. Why do I have to pay a fee to USA Triathlon?
A. USA Triathlon (USAT) is the national governing body for the sport of triathlon. Membership in USAT is required for all participants in Epic Races events sanctioned by USAT. Participants can choose to purchase either a one-day membership for $15 or an annual membership for $50. Youth participants only have the option of purchasing an annual youth membership for $10. Back to the top.

Q. I paid for a one-day USAT membership. Can I apply that to an annual membership?
A. Absolutely! To receive credit toward an annual membership, please email your proof of one-day license purchase to membership@usatriathlon.org and request the credit. USAT will send you a link to purchase your membership at the discounted rate. If the name of the event where you purchased your one-day license is not listed on your proof of purchase, please include it in the email. Should you purchase an annual membership before hearing back from USAT, your one-day license fee will not be refunded. Back to the top.

Q. I lost/can’t find my USAT card. Do I have to present it at packet pick-up?
A. Yes! If you do not present your USAT card at packet pick-up, you will need to purchase a one-day USAT membership. If you know your USAT membership number and have created an online account at USATriathlon.org, you can log into your account page and print out a copy of your USAT card to present at packet pick-up. Back to the top.

Q. My name isn’t on the alpha list. I know I registered! What do I do?
A. If your name isn’t on our alphabetical list of participants, you must present a print-out of your confirmation email to verify that you did indeed register for our event. If you cannot present your confirmation email, you will need to register at race-weekend rates in order to participate. You will also need to pay for a new one-day USAT membership or produce your USAT membership card. For specifics regarding the deadline by when to request that your confirmation email be sent to you, please check the specific event’s FAQs.

Q. What do I do race morning when I arrive?
A. You’ll want to go to the main registration tent or pavilion. An Epic volunteer can direct you if you have difficulty finding it. Once there, you should:

  • Look up your race number on the alpha list
  • Proceed to the next table and pick up your race packet. Be sure to have your photo ID (everyone) and USAT License (USAT annual members)
  • Continue to the next station and pick up your timing chip at the chip table. Place this around your ankle immediately!
  • Proceed to the transition area for body marking and to set up your transition space.If at any time you are unsure what to do or where to go, simply locate an Epic Races volunteer and they will assist you with any questions or issues you may have. Back to the top.

Q. What should I wear?
A. Anything that is comfortable for you!  While many racers prefer triathlon suits, others find that they prefer simply pulling a pair of running shorts over their swim suit and throwing on a T-shirt. It is completely up to you! Back to the top.

Q. Do I change my clothes for each event?
A. While you may put on clothes over your swimsuit, nudity is not allowed, so plan accordingly. We recommend  that you wear something that you will be comfortable wearing for the swim, bike, and run. Again, you can put on shorts over your Speedo, but you can’t take off your Speedo to put on shorts! Back to the top.

Q. Where do I keep all of my equipment, such as my bike, running shoes, water bottle, etc., during the race?
A. You will place your bike, along with any personal items, in the transition area within the section identical to your race number. You will only be able to access those items you place in the transition areas upon completion of the swim leg and the bike leg. Back to the top.

Q. What should I have at my transition site?
A. Keep whatever you feel is necessary or will make you more confident and comfortable during your race. There have been racers who set up their transition site with their bike, helmet, race sunglasses, biking gloves, three pairs of shoes, race belt, and a cooler with iced sports drinks. There have been athletes who set up with a bike, bike helmet, race belt, and running shoes. For an idea of what to have at your transition area, click here. Back to the top.

Q. Do we all start at once?
A. No. All of the racers are divided into groups called waves. These are based first on race distance, then by age group. There are usually four separate waves for each race, with each wave starting about three minutes apart. Back to the top.

Q. Do the Sprint and Mini Sprint start at the same time?
A. No. The Sprint will start first and the Mini Sprint will start about 10 minutes after the last Sprint wave. Back to the top.

Q. The body-marking volunteer wrote “39” on my leg, but I’m only 38.
A. Don’t worry about this! USA Triathlon classifies athletes by what their age will be on the last day of the year. Back to the top.

Q. If I get injured before or during the race can I get a refund?
A. For more information regarding our refund policy, visit our web site’s Policies subsection. Back to the top.

Q. Are there cut-off times?
A. Epic Races encourages triathletes of all levels of experience and ability to take part in our events, so there are no cut-off times. We do ask, however, that you please take into consideration the volunteers and staff members who have given their time to set up, man, and take down our bike and run courses when selecting your triathlon distance. We will be there for all of our participants at the finish line, but our crew may begin dismantling certain structures and points along the course due to time constraints.  Back to the top.

Q. What if there is a rain delay? Will our finish times be adjusted?
A. We take our participants’ safety very seriously and will halt a race should severe weather be striking. Per USAT rules, however, there are no time adjustments made for delays due to weather.

Q. What are Athenas and Clydesdales?
A. USA Triathlon recognizes the Athena and Clydesdale categories for Sprint Triathlon. The Athena category is open to women who meet the minimum weight standard of 165 pounds. The Clydesdale category is open to men who meet the minimum weight standard of 220 pounds. Both Athena and Clydesdale categories are divided into two age divisions, 39 and under and 40 and above. Any triathlete choosing to compete in the Athena or Clydesdale category is in the running for awards in those categories but becomes ineligible for age-group awards.  Back to the top.

Q. Can I wear a life jacket or use a flotation device?
A. No! Life jackets, fins, noodles, kickboards, and other flotation devices are not allowed. If you become fatigued while swimming, we have trained lifeguards in kayaks available for distressed swimmers. You may hold onto a kayak to recover without penalty, providing you do not ask them to move you forward. If you feel unable to continue the swim, simply notify one of the lifeguards and they will ensure you make it to shore safely. Back to the top.

Q. Do I need to wear a swim cap?
A. Yes! You will be provided with a swim cap that must be worn throughout the swim. These caps are color coded by wave and allow officials to identify swimmers more easily. If you have an allergy to latex, you may bring your own silicone cap. Back to the top.

Q. Can I wear water socks?
A. No. USAT Rule 4.9 Illegal Equipment states: Any swimmer wearing any artificial propulsion device, including but not limited to fins, gloves, paddles, or floating devices of any kind shall be disqualified. Like gloves, water socks are considered a flotation device, so you may not wear them. Back to the top.

Q. Do I wear my race bib during the swim?
A. No! Shortly after your arrival on race day, you will proceed to body marking, where one of our Epic volunteers will use a marker to write your race number on your upper arms and your age and race on your legs. You will also wear a timing chip around your ankle. This is all the identification you will need for the swim. You are, however, required to wear your race bib for the bike and run. Back to the top.

Q. If I am in a different wave from my friend, can I wait for her at the shore?
A. Yes, although we recommend that you wait by your bike in the transition area. Keep in mind as well that biking side by side or within three bike lengths of her on the road is prohibited. Running together, however, is not a problem! Back to the top.

Q. What if there are other swimmers blocking my way, so I can’t get ahead?
A. Finding our way blocked by a slower swimmer (or two) is not uncommon in the sport of triathlon. If you wish to pass the swimmer ahead of you, try tapping their foot to let them know you are within reach and would like to pass. Sometimes swimmers are “in the zone,” however, and may not notice a foot tap. If this happens, you may have to simply swim around them. Back to the top.

Q. Can I use a mountain bike?
A. Yes! While we highly recommend the use of road bikes or triathlon bikes, especially for Olympic-distance races, in Sprint-distance races it is common to see lots of mountain bikes and hybrids used by racers. Back to the top.

Q. Can I ride a tandem?
A. No! Sorry, but single riders only! Back to the top.

Q. Am I required to wear a bike helmet?
A. Yes! Helmets are required. Safety first! Back to the top.

Q. Can I wear earbuds/headphones or play music while I ride?
A. No. Our triathlons are sanctioned by USA Triathlon (USAT), and USAT regulations state that no headphones/earbuds/portable music devices are allowed during an event. Even without USAT sanctioning, Epic Races would not allow headphones/earbuds/portable music devices. Our bike and run courses are open to vehicular traffic, and our participants need to be able to hear vehicles approaching and passing, fellow participants calling out that they are about to pass, and course marshals/race officials calling out instructions. The safety of our participants is vital, so please leave your music in your car or at home. Back to the top.

Q. Am I allowed to walk during the run?
A. Yes, absolutely! Remember these races are about YOU! Do what YOU feel comfortable doing! Back to the top.

Q. Can I run barefoot?
A. While we recognize the growing movement towards running naturally, in bare feet, we strongly recommend that you wear comfortable, supportive running shoes. The majority of our runs are on trails, where an unfortunate encounter with a sharp stick or rock could abruptly end your race. Back to the top.

Q. Can I wear earbuds/headphones or play music while I run?
A. No. Our triathlons are sanctioned by USA Triathlon (USAT), and USAT regulations state that no headphones/earbuds/portable music devices are allowed during an event. Even without USAT sanctioning, Epic Races would not allow headphones/earbuds/portable music devices. Our bike and run courses are open to vehicular traffic, and our participants need to be able to hear vehicles approaching and passing and course marshals/race officials calling out instructions. The safety of our participants is vital, so please leave your music in your car or at home. Back to the top.

Q. Will there be a photographer at the finish line?
A. Yes! Epic Races works with professional sports photographers who capture our racers in action on the course and at the finish line. These photos will be available for purchase within days of the race. Back to the top.

Q. Will there be any recovery foods or beverages after the race?
A. Yes! Thanks to our generous sponsors, including FlatOut bread, Velvet Peanut Butter, Better Made chips, Hammer Nutrition, and Clif Bar, Epic Races is always able to offer our race participants a variety of tasty foods at our post-race athlete breakfast. Back to the top.