New to the Rules of the Road (TY 2016)

University Level teams may be contain College-bound high school seniors who are taking accredited courses offered by a college or university that will qualify for course credit when entering higher education.

Use of Batteries: Commercially available batteries are allowed if they are unmodified.

Member of multiple teams: If a team member is on two or more teams, the Tournament Director must be notified so that the Instant Challenge presented for those Challenges at the tournament will be different.


Sometimes it seems like a rule or requirement in a Team Challenge, a Clarification, or the Rules of the Road conflicts with something in one of those other documents. Which document would take precedence? In general:

Rules of the Road states general rules applicable to all Challenges.

BUT: A Team Challenge may have a special requirement that supersedes Rules of the Road. (For example, even though Rules of the Road states that batteries are allowed, a specific Challenge may prohibit any use of electricity, making bat­teries of all kinds illegal for that Challenge. In that case, the Team Challenge takes precedence.)

HOWEVER: A Published Clarification supersedes Rules of the Road and the Team Challenge, as well as a Team Clarifi­cation. This is why it is important to check the Clarification Web page frequently throughout the time leading up to your tournament.

So, in order from most specific to most general:

  1. Published Challenge Clarification
  2. Team Clarifi­cation
  3. Team Challenge documents/description
  4. the Rules of the Road (RotR)

Some definitions would probably be helpful:
Published  Clarification– A Challenge or RotR Clarification that the ICM’s feel apply to all teams in the Challenge. Many times these are omissions or typos.
Team Clarifi­cation- A Challenge clarification that applies (in the judgement of the ICMs) to only the team that requested it. Many times these may be related to a specific solution a team has devised and to publish it would in effect be interference with other solutions. Be aware that your CM’s and Head Appraisers are aware of these.
Team Challenge documents/description- This is the printed Challenge write-up supplied when you purchase your membership and each concerns a specific Challenge.
the Rules of the Road (RotR)– This is the “Bible” of the DI program. All materials in RotR apply to all teams (except as modified for specific Challenges). Occasionally there are clarifications for RotR, and these are usually typos, but not always. Sometimes they are changes to procedures that were not included at the time RotR was printed.