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Women Racers have to face the challenge ON THEIR OWN.

A place to discuss all things related to current professional road races. Here, you can also touch on the latest news relating to professional road racing. A doping discussion free forum.

29 Jan 2013 02:26

If a sport is interesting to the general public, it will thrive and the money will pour in. If not, it will forever remain relatively obscure. Case in point:

Women's football: not interesting, will never become a big deal. Boring.

Women's tennis: HUGE! Very entertaining.

That's life. I don't predict big things for women's cycling, mainly based on my own complete lack of interest. I do however have immense respect for the podium girls.
User avatar Clausfarre
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29 Jan 2013 02:31

Clausfarre wrote:If a sport is interesting to the general public, it will thrive and the money will pour in. If not, it will forever remain relatively obscure. Case in point:

Women's football: not interesting, will never become a big deal. Boring.

Women's tennis: HUGE! Very entertaining.

That's life. I don't predict big things for women's cycling, mainly based on my own complete lack of interest. I do however have immense respect for the podium girls.


What an appallingly sexist obnoxious post. The entertainment from the women's football at the Olympics was far better than the drab men's tournament. Granted that has a lot to do with the weird U23 format I think, but the women's game has the potential to deliver thrilling matches, just like I can go to a 5th tier game and enjoy it more than a PL game. As more and more women get into football, one might expect the women's game to increase in both quality and popularity. The podium girls comment was just the icing on the misogynist cake - not good enough to actually take part but they can stand there and look pretty? Get back to your cave.
User avatar Caruut
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29 Jan 2013 02:36

Ben Aroundo wrote:Asking for men to have better wages, more races, bigger prizes and better organized teams for women sounds like women are helpless and have a dependency on a male run sport. I think that women have to take responsibility themselves to create a better environment for women racing by organizing events, sponsoring teams, and putting out an effort to improve women's lot in the sport. Complaining about it, waiting fro men to contribute, and doing nothing personally to improve the present situation will not create the fair changes that most agree are needed.


If men weren't in more or less total control of the UCI then they wouldn't be "asking men" for it. As it is you are blaming an unequal power structure on the victims of it - how exactly can women's cycling do anything without asking men when the ones in charge are men? The insinuation that no-one involved in women's cycling is trying to do anything to make things better is frankly nasty, too.
User avatar Caruut
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29 Jan 2013 11:03

BroDeal wrote:Three words: Beach bike racing.



Got it already.

Cross.

But maybe they should ride in skimpy bikinis.....

For anybody who fails to notice, this is me being sarcastic. ;)
User avatar Swabian Lass
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29 Jan 2013 11:11

Joachim wrote::confused:

You don't have to read it. The thread title is pretty clear, why did you click on it if you know it is going to displease you?

Odd.


It's a point that needed making, and this was the most appropriate thread.

As it stands, with a nominally mixed forum, you periodically get some smart **** trying to bring Vos in to discussions.

Why not create a women's cycling forum where they can discuss it to their heart's content.
Waterloo Sunrise
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29 Jan 2013 12:03

Waterloo Sunrise wrote:It's a point that needed making, and this was the most appropriate thread.

As it stands, with a nominally mixed forum, you periodically get some smart **** trying to bring Vos in to discussions.


So? Sometimes it's appropriate.

Waterloo Sunrise wrote:Why not create a women's cycling forum where they can discuss it to their heart's content.


I don't much care to read the endless fan threads, with fanboys having wet dreams over Wiggins, Purito, Contador, the Schlecks, Valverde etc etc and there are far more of those than there are threads about women's cycling. :rolleyes: But I just click on through.
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29 Jan 2013 13:07

Sport doesn't owe anyone a living.

This isn't some worldwide conspiracy, it's straight economics. If enough people show enough interest in your sport, the dollars will come.
The Eggman
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29 Jan 2013 14:59

Waterloo Sunrise wrote:It's a point that needed making, and this was the most appropriate thread.


Did it need making? Could you not have just written "I'm a sexist" in your sig and saved yourself the trouble?

As it stands, with a nominally mixed forum, you periodically get some smart **** trying to bring Vos in to discussions.


Perhaps because Vos is under-appreciated; she is one of the most dominant sportspeople ever.

Why not create a women's cycling forum where they can discuss it to their heart's content.


Why, though? Just don't click on the thread or don't bother reading the Vos comments if you're that sensitive. Just because you want to act in this way doesn't mean everyone else does.
User avatar Caruut
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29 Jan 2013 15:01

The Eggman wrote:Sport doesn't owe anyone a living.

This isn't some worldwide conspiracy, it's straight economics. If enough people show enough interest in your sport, the dollars will come.


Yet if that is the case, why does the governing body invest in promoting cycling at all? Why is there such a thing as advertising if this is the case? Adequate prize money, it could be argued, would increase the level by encouraging greater competition. The UCI goes out of its way to promote men's cycling across the globe, but not women's. Why?
User avatar Caruut
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29 Jan 2013 19:40

Al-Jazeera are tape-delay broadcasting full coverage of the women's Tour of Qatar at present on Al-Jazeera Sport Global, which as a bonus is free to view online from most places.

Stage 1 was a typical Qatar stage, with echelons, a four-woman break that went the distance but only just held off a strong chase group, with the bunch at 2 minutes.
User avatar Libertine Seguros
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29 Jan 2013 21:15

Joachim wrote:I'm struggling to think of how the situation in cycling differs from any other sport, with the possible exception of Tennis.

Its lamentable, but then it is a reflection of the priviledged position that men hold in society.


Thats a load of bull****. Women's sport isn't sport at the highest level so its perfectly normal that there's less intrest in it. Imo they should even get rid of most women's sport at the olympics (with the exceptions of gymnastics and a couple of other sports but thats about it.)
Mich78BEL
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30 Jan 2013 04:01

Mich78BEL wrote:Thats a load of bull****. Women's sport isn't sport at the highest level so its perfectly normal that there's less intrest in it. Imo they should even get rid of most women's sport at the olympics (with the exceptions of gymnastics and a couple of other sports but thats about it.)


Why, though?
User avatar Caruut
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30 Jan 2013 05:52

Caruut wrote:What an appallingly sexist obnoxious post. The entertainment from the women's football at the Olympics was far better than the drab men's tournament. Granted that has a lot to do with the weird U23 format I think, but the women's game has the potential to deliver thrilling matches, just like I can go to a 5th tier game and enjoy it more than a PL game. As more and more women get into football, one might expect the women's game to increase in both quality and popularity. The podium girls comment was just the icing on the misogynist cake - not good enough to actually take part but they can stand there and look pretty? Get back to your cave.


Really? Women's football more exciting? Really?!?? No further comment needed.

You do a lot of senseless namecalling but you are not the holder of all things true. Women's tennis may be MORE exciting because it's not about just serving with 500 km/h. Things do not have to be equal. This is Earth, not Utopia.

And what is wrong with liking podium girls? Seriously, I can tell you have no sense of humour but is there really anything wrong with that? Sorry for my honesty, but I do not find women's cycling interesting just like women's snooker is boring. Sexist, mysoginistic.... Rubbish. Pure rubbish. Now please apologise.
User avatar Clausfarre
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30 Jan 2013 08:22

Clausfarre wrote:Really? Women's football more exciting? Really?!?? No further comment needed.

You do a lot of senseless namecalling but you are not the holder of all things true. Women's tennis may be MORE exciting because it's not about just serving with 500 km/h. Things do not have to be equal. This is Earth, not Utopia.

And what is wrong with liking podium girls? Seriously, I can tell you have no sense of humour but is there really anything wrong with that? Sorry for my honesty, but I do not find women's cycling interesting just like women's snooker is boring. Sexist, mysoginistic.... Rubbish. Pure rubbish. Now please apologise.

Your choice of words in your original post was appalling. You have "immense respect" for the podium girls, the idea being the women who bust their asses racing are not worthy of respect, but pretty girls whose job is to stand there looking pretty on the other hand are worthy of "immense" respect. That is why you're getting accused of being misogynistic.

Al-Jazeera are broadcasting the women's Tour of Qatar at the moment. Yesterday's stage wasn't a great race or anything, but it was certainly no worse than most men's stages I've ever seen in Qatar.

In the wintersports, the women's events are just as popular as the men's, more people that I know could tell you the top female skiers than male (in Alpine at least), and the spectacle is certainly no worse (at times it's better, in different ways. In XC skiing the lack of depth in the women's distance mass start races means the same people win much of the time, but at least the race gets broken up early, rather than being a 48km group ski followed by a 2km race, just like any crappy men's cycling flat stage). The only exception is Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined, which have only introduced women's competitions very recently.

Women's cycling is underdeveloped, and as a result it struggles from a lack of depth and a lack of exposure. But do you really enjoy watching all those repetitive men's races where the break is held at 3 minutes for two hours, then Cavendish wins? Is that really more entertaining? A lot of the time women's cycling doesn't interest people because they haven't been given a reason to care about the participants (and the lack of fans detracts a lot from the atmosphere as well), meaning that unless you're really into the sport you don't have a reason to tense up or get excited when the moves are made.

To improve women's cycling, the desire to do so and hard work on the behalf of those with the power to do so is required. Women's golf has established itself pretty well over the last 20-30 years, thanks to the LPGA's tireless work to develop the sport. Elsewhere, it seems that established women's sports (skiing, biathlon, tennis, athletics) stay established, and underdeveloped women's sports stay underdeveloped. If anything, you could argue that slogging your guts out in a sport where there's pretty much no reward is even more worthy of respect than doing so in a sport with greater benefits. Certainly more than for slogging your guts out standing around in a dress with a cheesy smile and giving the stage winner a kiss on the cheek, at least.

Note something about all of those established women's sports that I mentioned: with the exception of the golf, the women's events are coterminous with the men's. If you go to watch a weekend event on the biathlon World Cup, you go and watch both men and women race. It's only on the weekdays they'll do men on one day, women on the other. Go to a tennis tournament, and both women's and men's matches will get top billing at various times. With the possible exception of the Ronde van Drenthe, women's cycling is in no way whatsoever ready to share top billing with the men's equivalent race. However, most of the most successful women's races are ones like Plouay, RVV and Flèche, which sit alongside the men's races. These also benefit from having the fans out in force as, while they may be there solely for the men's race later on, the enthusiastic Flemish fans cheer anybody passing and lend an air of relevance to the event.
User avatar Libertine Seguros
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30 Jan 2013 08:41

I think a solution would be that ANY protour race would have to have a race for both gender, and that when applying for proteam licens, teams that have a team of each gender gets a benefit.
Cancellara is like The Black Album. Really good but way overrated.
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30 Jan 2013 09:45

Caruut wrote:Yet if that is the case, why does the governing body invest in promoting cycling at all? Why is there such a thing as advertising if this is the case? Adequate prize money, it could be argued, would increase the level by encouraging greater competition.


Because money coming into a sport means a lot more that just prizemoney. It also means sponsors & coverage rights deals, which in turn feeds the advertising.

Caruut wrote: The UCI goes out of its way to promote men's cycling across the globe, but not women's. Why?


The UCI promotes the men's cycling as that's where the interest and thus the money is. But don't put the cart before the horse and mistakenly think you could magically create interest by spending money on promotion. Interest happens organically.
The Eggman
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30 Jan 2013 10:24

The Eggman wrote:The UCI promotes the men's cycling as that's where the interest and thus the money is. But don't put the cart before the horse and mistakenly think you could magically create interest by spending money on promotion. Interest happens organically.


But how do you grow organically, when one of the biggest problems is that it doesn't have the exposure to grow that interest?

If women's cycling was given the opportunity to sink or swim, and it sank, then fine, at least we tried. But it isn't in the position to have that opportunity, so it seems. This is the paradox they face. There's no coverage because there isn't the interest to justify it, but the potential audience can't get interested because there's no coverage to get into. It's a lot of work to follow women's cycling closely, ad for most the reward just isn't there to justify putting that work in.

It's why I'm not necessarily in favour of forcing women's teams on men's teams or full equivalent races alongside every men's event, because it wouldn't be economic. But something like Romandie used to do when it had the Lausanne ITT and had a women's ITT the same day, that might work. Package the women's Ronde and Flèche coverage with the men's, stick highlights on after the finish of the men's race or something like that. The co-terminous events work well, so maybe more of them. The GP Quebec/Montréal, for example, would be a perfect opportunity for it, because they're circuit races. Do them on alternating days, or the women's race in the morning and men's race in the afternoon. There is interest in Canada, we know from the old Tour of Prince Edward Island. Events with several races grouped close together would be perfect for throwing a women's race in on one of the days - the week with the Coppa Agostini, Coppa Bernocchi and Tre Valli Varesine, for example, or a women's one day race on the day between the pre-TDU crit and the TDU proper. One of the days of the Five Rings of Moscow maybe, on the Kryletskoye Ring.
User avatar Libertine Seguros
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30 Jan 2013 11:30

Libertine Seguros wrote:In the wintersports, the women's events are just as popular as the men's, more people that I know could tell you the top female skiers than male (in Alpine at least), and the spectacle is certainly no worse (at times it's better, in different ways. In XC skiing the lack of depth in the women's distance mass start races means the same people win much of the time, but at least the race gets broken up early, rather than being a 48km group ski followed by a 2km race, just like any crappy men's cycling flat stage). The only exception is Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined, which have only introduced women's competitions very recently.


It maybe true that in wintersports women´s events are just as popular as the men´s - though I am not 100% certain of this claim - and I personally enjoy them equally, but it does not mean that this experience translates directly to other sports. Even in tennis where formally everything is equal, women´s tennis still falls behind in popularity.
My own personal experience is also similar, in some fields (like in wintersports) I can watch women´s and men´s events with same excitement (or with same boredom), but in some fields like women´s football, it is extremly boring.
Von Mises
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30 Jan 2013 11:31

User avatar Libertine Seguros
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30 Jan 2013 11:39

Libertine Seguros wrote:But how do you grow organically, when one of the biggest problems is that it doesn't have the exposure to grow that interest?


Here's the thing - I don't thing the problem is actually a lack of exposure. The sporting public are in fact aware that women's elite level cycling exists, just as we know lawn bowls exists, badminton exists, curling exists, archery exists, etc etc etc. The problem is the sporting public don't find it compelling enough to sit down and watch it on the telly/get out to the course/track/oval/court to warrant TV networks and sponsors investing in the sport.

And I come back to my initial point - Sport doesn't owe anyone a living. I'm sure elite women's cyclists would like to make more money out of their sport, as I'm sure do the elite lawn bowls players or archers, but at the end of the day it is only sport. A very lucky few in a handful of sports make great money out of what they do - that doesn't mean everyone is entitled to it.
The Eggman
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