• The Cycling News forum is looking to add some volunteer moderators with Red Rick's recent retirement. If you're interested in helping keep our discussions on track, send a direct message to @SHaines here on the forum, or use the Contact Us form to message the Community Team.

    In the meanwhile, please use the Report option if you see a post that doesn't fit within the forum rules.

    Thanks!

Problems with women's cycling

Jun 22, 2009
82
0
0
Visit site
I see Etrusa race was canceled completely. Lost Grimpers, lost Montreal Cup and the Tour, lost AgmenTOC women's races. What will be next? There is a decent start to a three part blog/post/reply about problems with women's cycling here.

http://www.kerry-litka.com/main/wordpress/2010/01/26/the-problem-with-womens-cycling/
http://www.kerry-litka.com/main/wordpress/2010/02/14/the-problem-with-womens-cycling-part-ii/
http://www.kerry-litka.com/main/wordpress/2010/02/14/the-problem-with-womens-cycling-part-3/

BBRoberts
 
Jul 27, 2009
496
0
0
Visit site
The biggest problem women's professional cycling has is that not enough people watch, and consequently there's no money in it - to the point where the whole concept of "women's professional cycling" is dubious, as SFA women actually make a living out of the sport, and the number who make enough to set themselves up for life from a pro career (which is to my mind the minimum I would have considered turning pro for) is

Just about everything else the author mentions can be traced back to that basic problem. For instance, If you're not making a living out of it, and there's no prospect of doing so, you'd have to be a pretty remarkable character to flog yourself year in, year out, both in training and on the road, just for the glory of your teammates.

That said, it seems to me that the easiest way to give women's cycling a boost women's cycling would be some affirmative action by the UCI, perhaps by requiring ProTour event organizers to put on a women's support race with guaranteed minimum prizemoney. That should make it relatively cheap to do TV coverage.

As for women's domestic "pro" cycling in the US, are the domestic "pro" men actually making a living out of it? If not, the chances of a domestic women's pro circuit would seem pretty minimal.
 
rgmerk said:
As for women's domestic "pro" cycling in the US, are the domestic "pro" men actually making a living out of it?

Not unless you call earning $10-$20K per year + equipment "making a living out of it." There is a very small market for domestic pro cycling in the USA, and what I mean by that is we have a fairly saturated sports market with the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, NASCAR, PGA, etc. etc.

Yes times are tough for the pro men in the USA lately which by extension means times are really bad for the pro women. :(

The economy is in bad shape here which of course explains the majority of the reason but I would asign some blame to the Hamilton and then Landis affairs. Cycling was just starting to grow in stature in the USA again on the coat-tails of Armstrong when those two dramas happenned back to back and really put a crimp in the growth of the sport in the USA.

Also, USA Cycling really blows as a governing body. I have no idea what they do with my annual license fees to be honest. My local race promotors and club presidents do far, far, far more for this sport than anyone at USA Cycling.

Anyway, the world could certainly use more women in lycra so yes I am bummed that the female side of the sport is really hurting lately.
 
rgmerk said:
That said, it seems to me that the easiest way to give women's cycling a boost women's cycling would be some affirmative action by the UCI, perhaps by requiring ProTour event organizers to put on a women's support race with guaranteed minimum prizemoney. That should make it relatively cheap to do TV coverage.

That should go over about as well as the WNBA...
 
Jun 22, 2009
82
0
0
Visit site
I think it would go over better then Women's basketball cause its done outdoors and the scenery is better as where indoor sports seem more boring to TV viewers. Euro classics do a better job at highlighting the races with the special views of famous castles and landmarks, etc. Also I think mostly white women in spandex are more attactive to TV viewers then Women's Baskeball. That's just an personal observation, so blow a fuse.
 
BBRoberts said:
I think it would go over better then Women's basketball cause its done outdoors and the scenery is better as where indoor sports seem more boring to TV viewers. Euro classics do a better job at highlighting the races with the special views of famous castles and landmarks, etc. Also I think mostly white women in spandex are more attactive to TV viewers then Women's Baskeball. That's just an personal observation, so blow a fuse.

Family Guy's take on the WNBA.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXT0OCm6bA4
 
Feb 18, 2010
1
0
0
Visit site
why would a sane female...

I competed in womens cycling in an elite level in the 80's in the US and europe. in running and triathalon the courses are equal, in tri, prizes are equal. what same woman w/ the talent to be pro would commit herself to a sport in which she is seen as at best a sideshow. until women are given the same respect as men, womens racing will not gardner the same respect. in the coors classic, Asner was asked to lengthen the races and make the courses more equal between the mens (long alpine type road courses) and the womens( short 30 mile road or crits); Womens teams were against it, too hard. if that is the attitude then it's not going to work. when the pro men are out dueling it over mountain passes, the women are going around in a circle in some park. Just not the same race folks. And the earlier posts are correct, when you watch your peers at school get careers, health insurance, and a life, when you live in the bike room and drive around in a beater car, w/ no savings , it's tough to do it year after year, long enough to develop as a pro racer. Kudos to those women who do!