In case you were too busy cheering for teammates at IM CDL (yay team!!), there was some drama among the pros: Heather Wurtele was in first place when the crank on her bike broke. Another competitor was planning on DNFing and offered her bike to Heather. Heather managed to finish the bike leg and was in 2nd place on mile 21 of the run when she was red carded. There was a lot of confusion about whether she had actually broken a rule -- after all, we all know the legend of Chrissie Wellington receiving CO2 from a competitor at Kona and winning -- but the DQ was final.
More details, including a rule explanation, on the Team Wurtele blog: http://www.teamwurtele.com/our-blog
Does this surprise anyone else? I had always thought "no outside assistance" didn't include fellow athletes or volunteers, but apparently not.
As I understand it, she wasn't DQ for outside assistance. She was DQ for making progress on a bike that was not her own. I've been at IM athlete's meeting where the race officials have said that giving away your spare tube to an athlete with a flat was ok.
Also, volunteers are part of the "race officials" team. This is why you are allowed to take gels and fluids from them. This is why at the T1/T2 IM changing tents, you can ask a volunteer to help you disrobe or tie your shoes for you without penalties. This is also why you can ask them to pack up your T1 and T2 bags for you as you head out from the tents without penalties. Or, if you do an European IM and happen to find yourself in a coed changing tent, you can graciously decide to say "no" to the beautiful gal who offers to help you disrobe :)
At an IM I did, a fellow DCTri person got a flat right at the T1 exit in front of all of the race officials. A "regular" volunteer, who was not part of the SAG support crew, came by and change the tire for her. No penalties :)