IAAF to consider one false-start rule for sprinters

Tuesday, March 13th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

LISBON, Portugal (AP) _ Sprinters could be disqualified after just one false start instead of two under proposals to be considered by the International Amateur Athletic Federation.

The proposed rule change was made Tuesday to the IAAF Council by the world body's technical committee.

Under the change, athletes in races of under 400 meters would be out after a single false start. Affected events would include the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes and the women's 100-meter and men's 110-meter hurdles.

False starts are relatively common in those sprint events. A one false-start rule would add significant pressure on runners not to jump the gun.

In other proposed changes:

_ competitors in the high jump and pole vault would be out after two consecutive failures at a height rather than three.

_ pole vault pegs would be reduced from 75 millimeters to 55 millimeters

_ the baton-exchange zone in relay events would be extended from 20 meters to 30 meters.

Some of the rule changes will be tested at second-tier IAAF events this year. The proposals will be submitted for a vote by the IAAF Congress at its meeting before the World Championships in Edmonton in August.

In another decision, the council agreed to introduce decathlon as a new event for women. But the heptathlon will remain as the official event at major championships.