(a) The process of starting events should commence with a signal or command that indicates “Take Your Mark” followed by a signal or command that indicates “Set” and then followed by a start signal or command that indicates “Go”. If, for any reason, the Starter has to speak to any competitor after either command, the start process shall be recommenced.
(b) Start lines may be established in the following manner and competitors must cross the start line to commence their race:
- (i) A designated line marked by a cord between two poles and/or with flags.
- (ii) A designated line drawn on the sand between two poles.
- (iii) A line of sight between two poles or straight line on the beach (e.g. IRB start), or as determined by the Starter or the Check Starter.
- (ivi) A line of sight between two poles or straight line in the water (e.g. ski start), or as determined by the Starter or the Check Starter
( c) In events where a cord is used competitors’ toes shall be on or behind the line but parts of the body may overhang the line.
(d) In events where a line is drawn (e.g. Beach Sprint), toes and fingers shall be on or behind the line except where an upright starting position is adopted. In such circumstance the competitors’ toes shall be on or behind the line but parts of the body may overhang the line.
(e) In Board events where a cord is used, and the board is held by the competitor, a part of the craft may be over the line but must be at right angles to the line or at an angle to accommodate prevailing conditions. In events where a Board is placed on the beach it shall be placed flat on the beach (i.e. no mounds underneath the Board) at 90 degrees and with the nose of the Board on the shoreward side of the start or change-over line.
(f) In Boat and/or Ski events, where a line of sight is used, the bow of the craft shall be on or behind the line, and at 90 degrees to the line or at an angle to accommodate the prevailing conditions.
(g) Whilst every endeavour should be made by the Starter to effect an even start the decision to “go” on the start signal rests with the competitor or team. If there is no recall by the Starter or the Check Starter(s) or the Referee, no protest shall be allowed on the start.
(h) The first competitor to leave their position on the starting line mark after the command “Take Your Mark” and before the signal to commence shall be considered to have made a starting break infringement and a false start declared.
(i) With the exception of competition up to and including the U14 age category the first competitor who breaks shall be disqualified except in beach flag events where that competitor shall be eliminated. If one competitor false starts, others may follow. Any competitor who follows is not deemed to have false started.
(j) In competition up to and including the age of U14 one false start per race shall be allowed. The first competitor who breaks after the first false start has been declared shall be disqualified except in beach flags events where that competitor shall be eliminated. If one competitor false starts, others may follow. Any competitor who follows is not deemed to have false started.
Note: Irrespective of whether a false start occurred, if in the opinion of the Starter or the Check Starter, the start was not fair because of a technical defect or other matter not caused by competitors the Starter must recall the competitors and recommence the starting process.
(k) Competitors entering the water in swim, craft and multi-discipline events may do so at their own discretion providing there is no interference to other competitors. The competitor entering the water in second or subsequent legs shall be deemed to be at fault if the progress of a competitor coming from the water is impeded.