Rules and Classes
Human Powered RaceAmerica
Classes and Rules Updated 01/20/14
Classes Rules Tech Inspect Mission Contact Forms HPRA

HPRA Racing Classes

Vehicles in this class may have any number of wheels. Wheel discs/covers are allowed. Rider is male or female of any age. A front or a rear fairing is allowed (not both). The edge of the fairing toward the rider may not penetrate the imaginary plane formed by joining the rider's shoulder center points with hip center points. No part of the fairing may be moved in entering, exiting, starting or stopping. 
Class numbers 301 - 499 (#301, #302 and #303 are reserved for last year's class winners)

Same rules as STOCK, except rider must be less than 16 years old on December 31 of the year racing. 
Class numbers 501 - 599 (#501, #502 and #503 are reserved for last year's class winners)

Same rules as STOCK, except rider must be female of any age. 
Class numbers 601 - 699 (#601, #602 and #603 reserved for last year's class winners)

Same rules as STOCK, except must have two or more riders. 
Class numbers 701-799 (#701, #702 and #703 are reserved for last year's class winners).

Same rules as STOCK, except vehicle must have three wheels. 
Class numbers 901-999 (#901, #902 and #903 are reserved for last year's class winners).

Vehicles in this class may have any number of wheels. Entries may have any number of riders, male or female. Wheel discs/ covers are allowed. Fairings can be one of three formats.

Type 1: Any amount of fairing is allowed in this class. The bottom must be open so that the riders(s) have their feet on the ground for starting and stopping. The only moveable fairing will be a door for entering and exiting the vehicle providing that the rider is able to stand in the bike, facing forward, with both feet of the ground, and without flexing of any body panels. The rider's head must be exposed above the fairing.

Type 2: Any amount of fairing is allowed, but no more than 40% of the fairing surface may be of a hard material (ie. composite, metal, or molded plastic), while the remaining 60% of surface area of the fairing must be of flexible, non self supporting material (ie. nylon, spandex). Parts of the fairing can be moved to facilitate entry and exit, or stop and start of the vehicle. The rider's head must be exposed above the fairing.

Type 3: Velomobiles
For our purposes, velomobiles will have three wheels for use at all times. Factory or homebuilt, velomobiles will provide weather protection such that the rider could commute in street clothes. Velomobiles must display cargo carrying capability, internal, equal to three or more grocery bags (paper or plastic;-). Velomobiles may have a closed bottom. Velomobiles may have the riders head enclosed or exposed.
Class numbers 101-199 (#101, #102 and #103 are reserved for last year's class winners.)

STREAMLINER - Vehicles in this class may have any number of wheels and any amount of fairing. Entries may have any number of riders, male or female. Fairing panels may be moved for entry, exit, starting, or stopping. Vehicles do not need to be capable of self-start/self-stop. Vehicles without start/stop capabilities will start at the back of the pack. Rider(s) must be able to exit the vehicle unaided in case of an emergency
Class numbers 1 - 99 (#1, #2 and #3 are reserved for last year's class winners.)

General Rules
  • All riders must wear an un-modified helmet that has a sticker showing compliance with one of the nationally recognized (any nation) testing organizations.

  • All vehicles must pass technical inspection before entering into practices or races. All vehicles must be able to pass the same technical inspection after any event. Nobody may tech inspect their own vehicle.

  • All riders must be able to start, stop, enter, exit their vehicles without assistance, except for STREAMLINER class.  After proving compliance, race director’s discretionary rule applies.

  • Human powered vehicles only. No supplemental or stored power allowed.

  • All vehicles must have multiple, fully active, independent brake circuits to provide a fail safe condition.

  • No electronic methods of indirect viewing (camera bikes) are allowed in multi vehicle races.

  • All vehicles must have operational mirror/mirrors demonstrating rear vision to both sides.

  • All vehicles must have large visible numbers on both sides of the vehicle.

  • A rider and vehicle are considered a unit in scoring. Changing of either or changing of the class requires a new number to be issued.

  • In the event of a protest regarding the classification of a vehicle, the classification of the protested vehicle shall be determined by a vote of an odd number of competitors of that class (excluding the vehicle/rider in question).

  • Vehicles requiring launch/capture crews will start at the back of the pack.

  • No jumping of classes. An HPV can only compete in the class it qualifies for. For instance, a bike with no fairings can only race as a stock class bike. There will be no limitations on a racer modifying the chassis or faring to compete in different classes at a meet.

  • While they are not required, HPRA recommends that open, forward-facing chain rings (common on SWB bikes), be protected with a guard (i.e. a conventional chain guard, or polycarbonate disc). 

  • While they are not required, HPRA recommends that seatbelts are used in fully faired vehicles to keep the rider in the vehicle in the event of a crash.

Race Director's Discretionary Rule

Final tie breaking decisions, decisions to promote the expeditious running of races, determination of demonstration classes, and all other godlike powers are given to the individual event race director. Only the HPRA Co-Dictators may overrule, and then only for a damn good reason or sheer capriciousness.

HPRA Points

All events of each venue's racing will count towards HPRA Series Points. Results of all events, at each venue, will be compiled and Series points will be awarded in accordance with racers' overall scores, in each class.

Series points shall be awarded in the following manner, per class:
1st - 60 pts, 2nd - 55 pts, 3rd - 50 pts, 4th - 45 pts, 5th- 42pts, 6th- 39pts, 7th- 36pts, 8th- 34pts, 9th- 32pts, 10th- 30pts, 11th- 29pts, 12th- 28pts, with the remaining placements in 1 (one) point increments.

To calculate HPRA series points, each individual race will be scored by points as above. Individual race points will be added up for each racer, in each class, on a daily basis, and an overall place will be assigned.  The HPRA points for each day will be assigned based on the overall place of the racer each day. This means that a racer who has 60 points for each of 4 races on a particular day, for a total of 240 points, putting him in first place overall in his class, would get 60 HPRA series points for that day.

End of the Year High point Racer: An individual racer will have all of his points counted in all the classes he participates in to determine an overall high point champion for the year.

Attention Racers!
It is in the racer’s best interest, that they know that their vehicle will pass an HPRA technical inspection before arriving at an event. A vehicle that does not pass the HPRA technical inspection will NOT be allowed on the race course for the duration of the event. A vehicle that does not pass the HPRA technical inspection will not be allowed on the race course for practice, or test rides. Nonregistered vehicles will not be allowed onto the race course at any time during hpra events, with the exception of race officiating personnel, and race support vehicles.

The following is checked during Tech Inspection:

Mirrors: The racer will be on/in their vehicle in their racing position. The inspector will stand about six feet behind the racer and alternately raise/lower their left/right hands. The racer, looking straight ahead and without moving their head must be able to identify "left or right". This may be accomplished with any number of mirrors. Usually this means you need two mirrors.
This is required to preclude the racer cutting in front of an overtaking vehicle or cutting back in prematurely after passing another racer.
Brakes: Brakes are tested to ensure their functionality and that there are two independent braking systems
Helmet: Helmet is checked to ensure it has a CPSC or other nationally recognized safety label.
Safety: The bike is checked for sharp edges and protruding parts that may endanger the rider or other competitors.

Forms for Race Directors

HPRA Release and Signup form (in PDF format)
HPRA Insurance Application (in PDF format)
HPRA Technical Inspection Form (in PDF format)
HPRA Racing numbers spreadsheet (in XLS Format)
HPRA Racing registration and AMB timing manual (in PDF format)

Racing Tools

60 minute countdown timer
30 minute countdown timer

Race Director Instructions

Questions and Answers about Hosting a Human Powered Race America event :
Q -
Why would I want to host an HPRA event?
A -
HPRA offers publicity for your event via the web, experienced racers, cheap insurance, electronic timing, and results posted on the site.
Q - How do I host an event?
A - Contact Garrie Hill (see contact link above).
Q - What types of courses are suitible for HPRA events?
A - HPRA events are run on closed courses. This may be a velodrome, car racing track, or roads that are closed to car traffic. You can work with your local government to see closing roads is an option in your area.
Q - What about insurance?
A - HPRA insurance is available for a very reasonably daily cost. Contact Garrie for details.
Q - How much can I charge the races who attend? That's up to you as you will be completely responsible for any fees and supplies needed to run your event. Making money is nice, but you should be sure you at least break even. Typically racers expect to pay about $20 per day to race at an HPRA event.
Q - How many racers will show up?
A - That depends on many factors. How many local racers can you get to the event? Many HPRA racers do drive long distances to get to events, and they are attracted by interesting new venues, prize money, and new people to race with. Having a 2 day event will attract more racers from far away than a 1 day event.
Q - What kind of prizes are expected
A - That's up to you and your budget. Prizes can be bike parts, money, certificates, trophies, or just a round of applause.
Q - Do I need sponsors?
A - You don't need sponsors, but they are recommended. Local bike shops, recumbent manufacturers, and other local businesses are usually very approachable about sponsoring events. They can pay for track rental, offer prizes, and offer services.
Q - What if it rains?
A - Depending on the track it's ok to race in the rain, but you will see a reduced attendance.
Q - How do I time the events?
A - The HPRA has two timing systems, one is designed for lap races, the other is designed for sprints. Both require a trained HPRA timing official in attendance to run. You will need to make arrangements with an HPRA timing official to ensure that they will be available to time your race. Otherwise you can time the events by hand, in which case you should make sure you have a stop watch, and lots of pads of paper and pens.

If you currently organize an HPRA event or are considering organizing an event, here are some things to consider.

  • Race directors should ensure that they have enough volunteers at their events to ensure the safety of the racers. Racers who are not in the current race can be drafted to help. As a general rule, one volunteer should be stationed at each corner of a track, as that is where most crashes occur.
  • Race directors should make sure the track is clean and free of debris that can cause slides or tire punctures.
  • $50 per venue must be sent to the HPRA records keeper for new transponders.
  • Race directors must supply a first aid kit.
  • Race directors must ensure water is available for the racers.
  • Race directors should supply number panels and some way of attaching them to the bikes. Number panels are traditionally Coroplast but can be made of corrugated cardboard in a pinch. Don't forget the marker pens.
  • Race directors are responsible for recording the results of each race, and sending them to HPRA records keeper.
  • A set of flags are nice (1 checkered, 1 white, 1 red, 3 yellow, 1 black).
  • Cones are handy to direct racers around a non-obvious course.
  • 2 way radios are another nice to have, to facilitate communications with corner workers.
  • Final tie breaking decisions, decisions to promote the expeditious running of races, determination of demonstration classes, and all other godlike powers are given to the individual event race director.




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