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RRCA Arkansas Grand Prix

Arkansas RRCA RGrand Prix acing Series


The RRCA Arkansas Long Distance Running Committee recommends the standards of good road racing practice listed below. We hope that race organizations will not stop at these standards or consider them a set formula. These are minimum standards and have been approved by the entire RRCA committee for Arkansas. The rules and standards set out below are mandated for all Grand Prix races.

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Road Racing Standards and Grand Prix Rules


  1. Race Directors
  2. Liability Insurance
  3. Traffic Control
  4. Course Management
  5. Starting Time
  6. Entry Fee
  7. Split Markers and Timers
  8. Medical Facilities and Aid Stations
  9. Finish Line
  10. Race Awards
  11. Rest Room Facilities
  12. Eligibility for Grand Prix Competition
  13. Wheelchair Racing
  14. Results
  15. RRCA and USATF Rules
  16. Grand Prix Scoring
  17. Grand Prix Composition
  18. Grand Prix Awards
  19. Long Distance Running Committee
  20. Meetings of the LDRC
  21. Grievances

  1. RACE DIRECTORS - Race directors shall conform their races to the GP rules and standards or risk expulsion. Race directors shall provide space on entry forms and t-shirts for GP sponsors’ names and logos. All races should be prepared to accommodate wheelchair racers (except in the case of cross-country races, of course). The entry forms shall state the awards divisions as set out in these rules and standards. Race directors shall provide race results as soon as possible after the race for posting on the Arkansas RRCA website.

    Bids for participation in the GP series shall be submitted in a timely manner and upon the proper forms as designated by the RRCA Arkansas State Representative and the LDR Committee. Failure to the race director to conform his/her race to the RRCA GP rules and standards shall be grounds for expulsion from the GP series.

  2. LIABILITY INSURANCE - All GP races are required to carry liability insurance for their races. Race directors are encouraged to purchase RRCA insurance, although they may use private carriers. Race directors are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the liability laws regarding running events by attending the annual Race Directors’ Workshop put on by the RRCA of Arkansas and the LDR Committee. Race directors should read the policies and note exclusions such as for baby strollers and pets. Persons who constitute exclusions under the race’s liability policy should not be physically removed from the course (especially if it is a public course) but should be told that they are not covered by insurance for any injury they may suffer or cause to another competitor, and that they will be disqualified and ineligible for any award. They should not be given a finish time or place. They are not a part of the race.

    RRCA Liability Insurance Brochure

  3. TRAFFIC CONTROL - The course should be adequately protected from vehicles. Every intersection should be blocked/guarded by a person who has been instructed on the importance of stopping traffic. They should also be instructed to point out to the runners whether to turn or to go straight. Make sure your course (start, finish chutes, timing) is wheelchair friendly and will accommodate the athletes.

  4. COURSE MANAGEMENT - A race course should be accurately measured so that the runner's finishing time will be meaningful to him or her. RRCA Grand Prix races must be USATF/RRTC certified. Courses should be physically inspected for obstructions personally by the race director the evening before the race and again the morning of the race. Any obstructions should be announced at the start to the competitors. If the obstruction constitutes a danger to the competitors the race should not be started until the obstruction is removed or properly negated.

  5. STARTING TIME - Races should always be started at the exact time shown on the race entry form. They should never start early. Short races are encouraged in the warm weather. Races with wheelchair divisions should start wheelchairs 1 minute early. Walkers should start 1 minute late.  If a race offers an early start option for the purpose of allowing slower participants to finish the race in the time allotted, faster runners should be strongly discouraged from taking this option.  Race disqualification for misuse of an early start option rest with the race director, but no runner taking the early start will be awarded more Grand Prix points than a runner taking the regular, competitive starting time. 

  6. ENTRY FEE - Entry fees should be held as low as possible. Consideration should be given to capping the entry fee for members of the same family. When a family of four runners (Mom, Dad, son and daughter) have to pay $15.00 each to enter a race, plus the other attendant expenses, you can see how this can be a discouraging factor. Also, for the same reason, consideration should be given to high school runners who can’t compete year-long in the GP because of track and cross-country seasons. Try offering a discount to these runners to encourage young people to get involved in our sport. Offering the T-shirt as an extra cost option may be done to help keep fees lower. If the planned race is a fund raiser, that should be explicitly stated in pre-race data and on the entry form so the runner knows his/her entry fee is going to go to a cause.

  7. SPLIT MARKERS AND TIMERS - Every mile should be marked in the race, including mile 3 in a 5K race and mile 6 in a 10K race. The miles should be marked by signs placed on the course.

  8. MEDICAL FACILITIES AND AID STATIONS - There should be water available at intervals during a distance run (2 miles or more often in hot weather and 3 miles in cold weather). The water should be handed to the runners as they pass. It should not be left sitting on tables. There should always be at least one water station on every 5K course and at least 2 on every 10K course. It is suggested that one or more medical persons be available to assist any runner who may become ill or exhausted. The LDRC recommends that an EMS truck follow the last runners on the course.

  9. FINISH LINE - The finish line should be capable of informing the runners ASAP after the race of their finishing time and place. There is no reason to wait until the very last runner is across the finish line before beginning the tabulation of results. Do not draw out awards ceremonies with numerous announcements, prize drawings, or awaiting the results of other races, fun races, etc. Begin the awards ceremony ASAP after the race. If there are other races, announce those results in the order that they are run. Prize drawings can take place after the awards ceremony. Every runner should receive a time and place. Manual back up should be provided if chronomex or other electronic or computer timing is used. Race Directors should provide a person to insure that runners do not pass other runners in the chute after crossing the finish line. The finish line should be clearly marked by line or tape on the pavement and where possible by banner. A long chute is recommended to prevent runner stack ups in larger races. Race workers should be at the back of the chute in order to allow the runners to decelerate and for the race workers’ protection. A digital clock is recommended at the finish line. They can be rented.

  10. RACE AWARDS - Open races should be divided into male/female divisions and subdivided into open, masters, and age group categories. Grand Masters and Seniors winners should be recognized and should receive awards in all State Championship races. This is mandatory. Non-state championship races are not required to do this. The number of overall awards and age group awards should always be listed on the race entry form. Every race should award 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places overall as the open category to both males and females, and exclude these open category winners from age group competition. Runners should NEVER receive two awards in the same race, i.e., no duplication. Awards, in non-state championship races, should be 3 deep overall male and female, 3 deep Master male and female, 3 deep male and female 0-9, 10-14, 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70-74, 75-79, and 80+. In state championship races, awards should be 5 deep in age divisions 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54 and 55-59 for men and women. Awards can be 3 deep in other age group divisions.

    Championship races
    Mandatory awards
    Overall, Masters (40+), Grand Masters (50+), Seniors (60+)
    Awards 3 deep
    Age groups 0-9, 10-14, 15-19, 20-24, 60-64, 65-69, 70-74, 75-79, 80+
    Awards 3 deep
    Age groups 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59
    Awards 5 deep

    Non-Championship races
    Mandatory awards
    Overall, Masters (40+)
    Awards 3 deep
    All age groups
    Awards 3 deep


    Age groups are not recommended for fun runs. For short runs designed for children, there should be more age groups and participation ribbons should be given to all finishers as they cross the finish line.

    All the overall and age group winners' names, times, and places of finish, as well as the number of finishers in the race should be announced at the awards ceremony. The people who stay for the awards ceremony are the ones who want to hear names, times, and places. Awards can be medals, ribbons, trophies, plaques, or any type running mementoes, but should always have the name of the race, date and distance. 

  11. REST ROOM FACILITIES - There should be adequate toilet facilities. These should be located near the start of the race.  

  12. ELIGIBILITY FOR GRAND PRIX COMPETITION - To be eligible for the Grand Prix Racing Series, ALL competitors must be members in good standing (dues paid) of an Arkansas RRCA club. You may be a member of more than one club, but, for the purpose of team scoring, only one club may be listed on your Grand Prix entry form. Competitors must have timely paid their entry fee for the Grand Prix, and paid their entry fee (or an received official comp/waiver from the race director) for the race. Club presidents are responsible for reporting delinquent members to the State Representative. Delinquent members will be disqualified from the Grand Prix individual and team competitions.

    Grand Prix entry form with participation dues must be received at least 1 day before a GP race in order to earn points for that race. Competitors must participate in at least 5 GP races in a season in order to be eligible for GP awards.

    Races must be sponsored by an official RRCA Arkansas club to be eligible for participation in the GP series. The club must actively participate in the administration of the race.

    Series Age: You will be scored at one age for the entire season. Your Series Age is your age on the date of the last race of the season. For example, whatever your age is on November 26, 2005 will be your “series age” for the entire 2005 Grand Prix season. This keeps runners within the same age groups for Grand Prix scoring purposes for the duration of each racing season.
    Note: Your Grand Prix Series Age does not affect the scoring, timing or results of each individual race in any way. Race awards are calculated on the basis of your age on race day.

    Effective Date: Your effective date is when GP scoring (for you) commences. This date will be 1 day (24 hours) after receipt of your GP entry form. No scores will be awarded for races run prior to the Effective Date.

    Youth Runners: Runners can only earn age group points in a race in which their entire age range is eligible to compete. For example, if a Grand Prix race has a minimum age of 18 to compete, no one in the 15-19 age group can earn age group points in said race. In this scenario, an 18 or 19 year old would still be eligible to run the race and earn overall Grand Prix points as well as factor into team competition.
    Regardless of race stipulations, runners in the 0-9 and 10-14 age groups will not be scored in age groups, overall, or team competition in any race greater than 10 miles.  Additionally, runners in the 15-19 age group will not be scored in any race greater than 20 miles. The Arkansas RRCA does not encourage youth runners to race these longer distances.
    For Iron Status, youth runners need only complete the races in which they are eligible to score.

  13. WHEELCHAIR RACING - Competitors may race in regular chairs in races 5K and under. Over 5K, competitors must have racing chairs. Awards are 2 deep in the M-F categories, and 3 deep for juniors (15 and under). Proper helmets are mandatory. In races where there are 3 or more racers in the open category or 3 or more racers in the junior category, finish chutes must be opened or widened in order to accommodate a close finish and avoid injury in the finish chute. Wheelchairs shall start 1 minute before other competitors.

  14. RESULTS - Race directors are responsible to provide a complete listing of all finishers, overall winners and age group winners. These results should be handed, emailed or faxed to the LDRC Scoring Chairman or Committee Member as soon as possible after the race for posting on the Arkansas RRCA website. The results should include runner's first and last name, age, sex, hometown and state.

  15. RRCA AND USATF RULES - The RRCA and USATF rules and regulations regarding racing are incorporated as a part of these rules. For example, any questions as to whether a runner has engaged in illegal assistance or coaching during a race will be answered by referring to the RRCA and USATF rule (Rule 66.1) on the subject. All disputes shall be submitted to the LDR Committee in writing, subject to review and a decision by the Committee. All decisions of the LDR Committee will be final.

  16. GRAND PRIX SCORING - The total score for an individual runner will be the best 5 state championship scores plus the best 5 non-state championship scores. The Championship races are scored on a 3 point decrement scale, with 30 points for 1st place. Non-Championship races are scored on a 2 point decrement scale, with 20 points for 1st place. Places 11 and greater receive 1 point for participation (age group categories only).

    Championship Races:
    Nonchampionship Races:
    1st 30 points   1st 20 points
    2nd 27 points   2nd 18 points
    3rd 24 points   3rd 16 points
    4th 21 points   4th 14 points
    5th 18 points   5th 12 points
    6th 15 points   6th 10 points
    7th 12 points   7th 8 points
    8th 9 points   8th 6 points
    9th 6 points   9th 4 points
    10th 3 points   10th 2 points

    End of season tie-breakers consist of comparing competitors' total points in counted (best 5) Championship races, first, and if the tie is still unbroken, then comparative scores in head-to-head competition. A third tie-breaker, if needed, is head-to-head competition in the last race of the year where one or both runners compete.

    Chip timing vs. gun timing: When available, the Grand Prix will be scored by chip timing.

    Teams (RRCA clubs) will be scored on a cross-country basis. The first 4 male runners and first 3 female runners from each club will be scored against runners from other clubs with team points awarded in the same decrement scale shown in the box above. A team must have 4 male finishers to earn points for a race in the Men's Team Competition, while Female Teams must have 3 finishers to earn points. Only the 16 best team scores count towards a club's year end total. However, the teams will always get to drop at least their 3 lowest scores.

    For Example:
    • If there are 19 or 20 races in the Grand Prix, the best 16 scores will count for the Team Competition in that year.
    • If there are 18 races in the Grand Prix, the best 15 scores will count in the Team Competition for that year.
    • If there are 17 races in the Grand Prix, the best 14 scores will count in the Team Competition for that year, etc...

  17. GRAND PRIX COMPOSITION - The Grand Prix Series will be limited to a maximum of 20 races and a maximum of 10 State Championships. The series will be composed of no more than 50% races of 4 miles or less.

  18. GRAND PRIX AWARDS - Grand Prix awards (male and female) are presented in the following categories:

    Top Five RRCA/Arkansas clubs (five awards per club)
    Top Three Overall Runners
    Top Three Overall Masters (40 and Over)
    Top Three Overall Grand Masters (50 and Over)
    Top Three Overall Seniors (60 and Over)
    Top Five Runners in 5-year Age Groups (0-9, 10-14, 15-19, up to 75-79 and 80+)

    *Runners eligible for an award in more than one category will receive the higher award based on the following heirarchy:

    Overall > Masters > Grand Masters > Seniors > Age Groups

    For example, a 42 year old runner who finishes 2nd Overall, 1st in Masters, and 1st in the 40-44 Age Group will only receive the award for 2nd Overall. The awards for the "lesser" categories will go to the next eligible runner. However, for the purposes of the Grand Prix Archive Page, the Masters Champion for a given year will always be the runner with the highest Masters point total, regardless of his or her finish in the Overall Competition. If a runner finishes 1st in Masters, Grandmasters, or Seniors, and also finishes either 2nd or 3rd in the division above, the runner may choose to receive the first place award. This exception does not apply to age group standings.

  19. LONG DISTANCE RACE COMMITTEE - The Arkansas RRCA Long Distance Running Committee are the representatives of Arkansas RRCA Clubs that actively sponsor the annual RRCA Grand Prix Series. The LDRC serve the goals and mission of the RRCA, promote the benefits of running in Arkansas, and encourage participation in the Arkansas Grand Prix Series.

    LDRC Composition: Each Arkansas RRCA club shall be offered the opportunity to have at least one member, but no more than two, on the LDRC. All members of the committee shall be voting members. The RRCA state representative shall be chairman of the committee and a voting member. The immediate past state representative shall be a voting member. An Arkansan serving in a regional RRCA representative capacity shall be a member. The state director may appoint additional committee members based upon his best judgment.

    The LDRC also votes on issues relevant to the Standards of Arkansas Road Racing and the Arkansas RRCA Grand Prix Series scoring, rules, grievances, and awards. Members participate in occasional LDRC meetings called by the State Representative and are required to attend the annual year-end meeting to discuss and vote on any issues affecting the goals and mission of the Arkansas RRCA for the next year.

    Votes during the competitive year that affect points calculation shall require a 60 % majority vote for passage; prior to the competitive year, a simple majority. Votes impacting LDRC committee functions will require a simple majority for passage. All committee members shall be voting members, including the state director. Recusals for conflict and abstentions are certainly permitted. The state director shall be permitted to receive and cast proxy votes – that is, LDRC members who are unable to attend meetings are permitted to ask the state director to cast their vote. As well, LDRC members may send a representative from their club to vote on their behalf.

    LDRC members may be appointed sub-committee roles at the direction of State Representative. Committees include the Rules Committee, the Scoring Committee, State Records Committee, and Scheduling Committee. LDRC Members and Committee Chairs are annually appointed in January by the Arkansas RRCA State Rep and serve the calendar year.

    A. Regular Meeting. Regular meetings of the RRCA LDRC shall be held when considered necessary by the State Rep. provided that at least three regular meeting shall be held each year. A special meeting may be called by the State Rep, and shall be called at the written request of not less than one-third of the members of the RRCA Long Distance Race Committee.
    B. Notice. Each member of the RRCA LDRC shall be notified in writing of the time and the place of a meeting at least 30 days prior to the meeting.
    C. Quorum. Six members of the RRCA Board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. Each member of the RRCA LDRC shall be required to vote, and the act of the majority of those present at a meeting at which there is a quorum shall constitute the action of the RRCA Board.
    D. Order of the meetings: The order of business at the regular meetings of the Arkansas RRCA LDRC shall be as follows:
    1. Call to Order
    2. Roll call
    3. Action on minutes of preceding meeting
    4. Reports, if any, of officers
    5. Reports of Committees
    6. Unfinished business
    7. New business
    8. Adjournment

  21. GRIEVANCES - All substantive grievances involving rules interpretations should be submitted to the Arkansas RRCA LDR Committee through the State Representative. All procedural questions or complaints should be directed to the State Representative or the Rules Chairman. All scoring accuracy and eligibility questions should be submitted to the Scoring Chairman. All RRCA Grand Prix Rules and Regulations are determined by a majority vote of the LDR Committee. Rule changes should be submitted to the Committee for study and subsequent consideration. No action can be taken on any question/issue which is submitted for the first time to the Committee at a meeting of the Committee unless the rules are suspended by a two/thirds vote. However, if a proposed rule change(s) is submitted to the LDRC by email, 30 days prior to a meeting, those submissions may be considered at that meeting without the necessity of a rules suspension as outlined in the preceding sentence.