but then you need to figure out what constitutes behavior warranting a suspension that survives just that single race. you codify it, you put it in the rules or in the code of ethics, and in the waiver you make sure everyone agrees to abide by the rules (as is now the case). what we have now are races and NF making ad hoc decisions, and they're afraid of the consequences of their decisions, so they're timid. but if we had guidelines, and behaviors that triggered consequences, as we have with drafting, doping, etc., then i think RDs and NFs would be more confident in their decisions.
this is where the NF has a role to play. if you are found to have not completed the prescribed course X times in Y months or years, you get a suspension for 1yr, or 2yr, whatever. or if you have 3 incidences of losing timing chip + not completing the course in 24 months. whatever. that seems a discussion worth having, because more and more of these cases are popping up. either this kind of behavior is really ramping up, or it's always been there but now it's easier to find these incidences. so, rather than hand wringing about what to do in each case, if we had a set of guidelines prescribing what we do, then i think NFs and RDs would know what actions to take, and they'd know that the athletes agree to this process as a condition of racing.
Totally agree with this Dan, I personally will be very disappointed/upset if the NFs don't address some of the blatant course cutting that has been covered in the news lately. I don't think we need to wait for the programming that does the macro analysis, the NF's need to add something to the effect: "competitors that are found to have not completed the entire course through either direct evidence or based on unbelievable splits are subject to DQ. Athletes that are found to have intentionally cut a course to gain a competitive advantage more than once shall be suspended for a minimum of two years. Subsequent intentional course cutting shall result in a lifetime ban from all USAT sanctioned events."
I was pulled into the whole "Mike Rossi" marathon and am disappointed with how that was handled. The fact that Julie Miller has been DQ'd here is great, though I read earlier (or in another thread) somebody raise a good question, why wasn't she DQ'd immediately for not having a timing chip as required? Despite this, kudos that the work was done to show she did cut the course!
For any timing companies or event management/production groups, here is an idea for you, I had thoughts of monetizing this, the idea came to me during the Rossi deal and I was going to call them "Rossi Boxes" and was thinking I could create 20 to 50 Rossi Boxes and have them available to rent to races/events for one or two hundred dollars a weekend. A Rossi Box would be an old Iphone 4 or 5 that is still functional. Combine it with a pelican/waterproof case, a tripod, a security cable and a small solar panel to keep the Iphone active. Combine it with something like this http://www.cnet.com/...ity-camera-for-free/
or I was considering using Dropcam tethered to an Iphone. Either way, the Rossi Boxes could be placed at key spots in the race recording footage that could later be reviewed if there were possible course cutting issues. As technology improves, boxes like this combined with OCR and the requirement to have bib numbers visisble will eventually cause timing chips to be less relevant.