Start station

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Women's starting pontoon or start station at the 2008 Beijing Olympic 10K Marathon Swim
noun - A start station is a floating object at the start of an open water swimming competition course that can support the weight of several athletes as well as coaches, officials, and volunteers.

Start stations are often set against land, fixed objects or a pier for stability, but can also be independently anchored along the race course in order to provide a stationary platform to allow (a) swimmers to start and/or finish an open water race, (b) coaches and trainers to provide hydration and fuel to athletes during an open water swimming race, or (c) officials to stand and judge a race or a specific area in a race such as a turn buoy or feeding station. The pontoon may be constructed from a variety of materials.

The athletes positioned themselves along the pontoon that was floating five meters from the race course.

Synonyms

Feeding station, pontoon, float, dock, raft, platform, starting pontoon

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