Number Pinning

Rule of the month –


1J7. Racing numbers.

 (b) Riders shall place their numbers as prescribed by the Race Director or officials and in such a way that they are visible when the rider is in a racing position. When shoulder numbers are provided for cyclo-cross, they are worn on the upper arm to be visible from the front. Hip numbers shall be attached securely at least at the four corners and no accessory or hair may obstruct a clear view of the number. If shoulder or frame numbers are provided, they too shall be placed as prescribed. Numbers may not be folded, trimmed, or otherwise defaced.


Many riders that I have discussed number placement or defacing are not aware that there is a rule about how and what you do with that number after it’s handed to you at registration. First, do NOT crumple it into a little ball – any aerodynamic advantage is highly debatable, and it makes the number very difficult to read both by eye and by photofinish equipment. Also DON’T fold or cut it smaller – there may be a sponsor name on the number, which the sponsor has paid for to be visible on every competitor, and that white space around the numerals makes it easier to read. Pin the number on EXACTLY where the promoter or officials have requested it, usually with signs at registration or in the race technical guide. The most common placement in the US is on the left or right side – this does not mean up on the shoulder blade or the middle of the back. Finally, don’t obscure the number with vests, jackets or waterpacks. And for (not necessarily just) the women, pin up or tie your long hair so it doesn’t fall across the number.

All of this will help to prevent you from being an “X” in the results and losing a paying place or upgrade points. And, from the penalty section of the rules below, there are possible penalties for not properly displaying your number even at small one day races.




A & B




8A1(j) Number invisible, badly positioned or covered at finish Warning, Relegation or $20 fine $30 fine 1st- warning and/or $30 fine

2nd – $50 fine

3rd – DSQ

Posted in General News.