I've been quite busy with a group of other girls sorting out a cycling league for this coming season. It's something quite new and exciting for us. We've no idea if it will work but we thought we'd give it a try. The idea came about when a group of us met in a pub in Battersea and we brainstormed how we could encourage more women to turn out at cycle races in the London area.
A local league consisting of a variety of grass roots races with ranking points, a leader's jersey and photo ops for the racers plus an end of season prize giving was what we proposed as solution to the low numbers we've been getting at local races.
The local cyclo cross league, which has run for a number of years, has a similar system where points are earned each time you race. There's no leader's jersey, but people get their moment of glory when the leading riders are gridded on the first row at the start of the race. As rankings are published regularly this leads to mini battles occurring at all levels - even for 67th place. The regular race reports and photos feature various riders - not just the star performers. It's interesting to see the type of things that motivate people.
The women's league doesn't start until the end of March when we hold our first race. Early indications show that there's alot of interest in this initiative and people are keen to take part.
Just as with any recipe, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. We'll have to wait until the racing season begins proper to see if this was a good idea!
Anyway, our website is live so feel free to check it out. Who knows, you may even be tempted to join in!
Photo by John Mullineaux, www.londoncyclesport.com
LWCR Logo by Rachel Brookes-Todoric