Swapping of Race Numbers

At one time or another many of us may have run an event using a number issued to another runner. This has generally not been allowed by race organisers and governing bodies.


UK Athletics existing rule is that: “Numbers are issued to the individual athlete completing the application form and are non-transferable, except with the specific authority of the Race Secretary.


However, in the 2014 UK Athletics rule book there has been a change regarding this practice. Under the new rules, which came into force on April 1st 2014, athletes who run in transferred numbers in UKA-licensed road races without permission are to be disqualified. Both they and those who pass on the number will be subject to disciplinary action via the appropriate national organisation.


Some races allow a legitimate transfer and some don’t. Some will transfer a race number at no cost, whilst some will charge an admin fee. It remains to be seen how rigidly the new UKA rule will be enforced and what disciplinary action may be taken. However, no matter how you feel you need to be aware of this new ruling.