Yellow Flags And Red Cards

Yellow Flags And Red Cards

A Yellow Flag or Yellow Card (noun): A yellow-colored penalty card or flag that indicates an official warning to a swimmer due to unsportsmanlike conduct or an infraction of the rules during an open water race. The head referee gave a yellow card to the swimmer who cut across the back of his competitor. Synonym: warning.

Red Card (noun): A red-colored penalty card that indicates the immediate disqualification of a swimmer due to unsportsmanlike conduct or a serious infraction of the rules during an open water race. The head referee gave a red card to the swimmer who pulled back his competitor around the turn buoy. Synonyms: disqualification, DQ.

During the 2009 USA Swimming National 10K Championship race, head referee Sid Cassidy, was caught on tape giving a yellow flag to one of the swimmers.

The process of blowing a whistle, giving hand signals to the athletes, writing the swimmer’s number on the white board and reporting the infraction to the Chief Referee is rarely seen from shore or by spectators. However, the entire process can be seen in this short race video off the coast of Ft. Myers, Florida.

At the 2010 USA Swimming National 5K and 10K Open Water Swimming Championships in Long Beach, California on June 4-6, there will be spectator boats on the course, so parents, fans and media representatives will be able to see this referee-swimmer interaction up close and personal.



Definition excerpts from the Open Water Swimming Dictionary (2009 English edition).

Copyright © 2010 by World Open Water Swimming Association