I. Operation Guidelines for Race Protests
(this information should be placed in a folder and given to the race director at all TCRA directed or sponsored canoe races)
-The following guidelines are provided to the Race Director and Arbitration Committee to be used at all canoeing/kayak events that are run or sponsored by the Texas Canoe Racing Association (TCRA). These guidelines are intended to assist the Race Director and the Arbitration Committee to handle “protests” filed by race contestants or race officials. The process followed by the Arbitration Committee should comply with THE BYLAWS OF THE TEXAS CANOE RACING ASSOCIATION and specifically Article VIII, Rule Infractions/Race Protests(Attachment 1); and also Article V, Recognized Canoe Classes(Attachment 2).
· Any “Race Protest” that is reported by a contestant or race officials should be reported to the Race Director.
· Immediately upon receiving the protest the Race Director should form the Arbitration Committee. Simultaneously, if the protest is made by a contestant the Director should ask the contestant to put the protest in writing and pay a $10 fee (the contestant must file the protest no later than 1 hour after the contestant completes the race or prior to awards ceremony, whichever comes first.
· In forming the Arbitration Committee the Director should contact the TCRA President who will chair the Committee. If the President is not at the race, the Race Director should contact the other two TCRA Officers : Vice-President, Secretary/Treasury to serve on the Committee. If the President is not at the race, one of the officers or Race Director will Chair the Committee.
· If some TCRA Officers are not at the race site, the Chairman or Race Director must recruit at least 3 TCRA Board Members to serve on the Committee. If at least three board members are not present to serve on the Committee, the Chairman will recruit TCRA members to serve on the committee. If a total of three TCRA Officers, Board Members or members cannot be recruited, the protest will be dismissed and no action can be taken.
· Once the committee is formed, the Chairman will read the written protest from the contestant or listen to the protest from the race official.
· While there are wide array of infractions that may be subject to consideration by the Committee, some examples include: un-sportsmanlike conduct, canoe and kayak specification infractions, safety infractions, race course infractions, and possibly others.
· The Committee will interview the protestant or race official and the party or parties that could be affected by the protest.
· If the committee needs additional information to resolve the protest they can interview other contestants or TCRA members.
· Upon hearing all the information, the Committee will decide to uphold the protest or dismiss by voting on the issue (The chairman will vote only in the event of a tie; no board member can participate on the committee if they are one of the principal parties involved in the dispute); a simple majority is needed to uphold a protest.)
· Decisions of the Committee can include no penalty, a time penalty, a place penalty, or disqualification. All decisions of the Arbitration are final.
RULE INFRACTIONS/RACE PROTESTS- Written protests must be filed by a race contestants no later than 1 hour after the contestant completes the race or prior to the awards ceremony which ever comes first, and must be accompanied by $10 non-refundable fee. Protests also can be filed verbally by the race director or any race official. All boats that are eligible to place should remain at the race site for 30 minutes following completion of the race. All decisions on protests will be made by the Arbitration Committee and will be final.
ARBITRATION COMMITTEE- The committee will consist of the TCRA President (Chairman), Vice-President, Secretary /Treasury and Race Director. In the absence of any of the named TCRA officers, the Chairman or the Race Director (if the Chairman is absent) will recruit TCRA Board members to serve for named members.
-If the Chairman cannot recruit a combination of three TCRA Board Members and/or three TCRA members to serve on the Committee, the protest will be dismissed and no action will be taken.
- A committee member cannot participate in an arbitration of a protest if they are one of the principals in the dispute.
-The chairman votes only in the case of a tie and a simple majority of the committee is needed..
PROTESTS- Protests can be filed at all TCRA Championship races or races that are run and sponsored by TCRA.
-Protests may include un-sportsmanlike conduct, canoe or kayak specification infractions, safety infractions, and race course infractions.
-In a protest, prior to a decision being rendered, each side will be allowed to voice their position. If the offending party leaves the race site, the Arbitration Committee will render a decision based upon available evidence. Also, the committee may call other contestants or TCRA members to provide additional information concerning the infraction.
-When protests are upheld, a time penalty, place penalty, or disqualification may be rendered. The Arbitration Committee may not require a penalty in cases where the infraction is minor.