This is a photo taken at Ironman Florida a few weeks ago. It must be obvious to even the most jaded athletes that this is a prime example of illegal drafting.
As you may know drafting is illegal during an Ironman race, yet it is by far the most common way of cheating during an iron distance triathlon.
Is it not high time to put this illegal, yet all too common practice to an end?
We think so and we need your help to do it!
In our most recent podcast we spoke with Dick Gilbert, the CEO of USA Triathlon (USAT) about the problem of cheating at USAT sanctioned races.
Mr. Gilbert strongly suggest that it is up to the individual athlete to follow a code of ethical responsibility and behavior when it comes to racing and obeying the rules of racing.
We cannot help but be struck by the complete and utter lack of individual ethical conduct pictured in the photo above.
The USAT will be asking all of the organization's employees to sign a code of ethical racing behavior which we suspect will eventually filter down to all USAT athletes. USAT will also embark on a campaign to educate athletes about the proper rules and etiquette of racing a USAT sanctioned triathlon.
We think these are two worthy steps, but we also believe that more needs to be done. Plus it needs to be done globally and not just locally as endurance sports span the world.
And this is where you can help.
We're looking for a few good athletes to step up and help by becoming Cheat Busters.
What's a Cheat Buster?
It's anybody with a digital camera who witness illegal activity during a race. Just think of it as a neighbor crime watch but for endurance sports.
Are you ready to help? Do you want to be a Cheat Buster?
Let's start with Ironman Arizona next week. If you want to help, and if you are watching IMAZ, and you happen to have a camera or phone with a camera, and you happen to see a drafting pack of riders fly by you (or any other obviously public and illegal race activity) just snap a photo.
Once you get home please Click Here and email us (teamatraceAthletedotcom) the photo along with:
A) Your name
B) A description of where and when the photo was taken.
C) Any story behind the photo that we should be aware of.
We'll publish the photo for all to see, and if you want we'll give you the credit. It is that simple. You've just done your part to help put an end to cheating at the next Ironman.
Congratulations---You are a CHEAT BUSTER!
Please keep in mind that for every athlete who cheats another athlete is pushed lower down the standings. Next time that other athlete could be you.
We are doing this because we strongly believe in our sport, and our endurance community. We also believe in the power of the internet. But more importantly, we believe in safe and clean races.
It is obvious to us that the vast majority of athletes do not cheat in anyway or form. In fact, most athletes would sooner not race than cut a buoy on the swim, or get a helpful draft on the bike, or cut a loop or catch a cab on the run.
It is preciously for these raceathletes that we are starting Cheat Busters. It strikes us as completely unfair that a few bad apples in the barrel are wrecking it for all of us. We strongly believe that if we all work together, we have a great opportunity to restore the ethical behaviors that now seems to be missing.