Womens’ Racing in 2010

We normally don’t cover local racing too much, that’s not our blog beat, but it’s worth noting the growth of Womens’ Racing in the Northwest. Yesterday, at the Olympic View Road Race, I watched the Womens’ 1/2/3 race for the last lap. Suz Weldon bridged to the break and then drove it to win a long, tough competitive race. As impressive a win as I’ve ever seen.

Later at the race finish I heard her say,

“now I need to go home and put a boob in my baby’s mouth.”

suzWins.jpg

She had a baby last Fall and is out winning races this Spring. Word.

When I started racing, the women just raced with the Masters Mens, Cat 4, or the Juniors. There was a handful of them and usually girlfriends and wives of the guys that come out to the races. That doesn’t mean any of them didn’t take it seriously. There just wasn’t a local scene for them. They’d have to travel to national or regional races to get into a big field. When they did have a local field, us guys would joke that the racing they did was at a tea-party pace. Slow enough for them to gossip. Well, today that “tea party” is a group of hard-women racing with tactics, skills, and speed. I didn’t hear any gossip, but yelling at each other about lines, and corners, and cursing like truckers. Before the races they’re talking their plans and afterwards how those plans went.

Pam is close to her upgrade to a 3 and is racing with the 4s in fields that regulary reach their limit. Early season, they had to split the fields into two. She sprinted to 4th yesterday from this field.

pam-002.jpg

Now if we could get that many juniors coming into the sport.

More photos, womens’ racing, and more womens’racing.

Also see Martha’s post on the Velocity blog.



1 Comments

Sundays race was one of the best of the season so far (from someone in the field). Team tactics were a big factor in the 72 mile course we covered in 3 hours & change. In the past 10 years, our women’s fields have definitely come a long way, as you point out, thanks in no small part to the efforts of some dedicated women and the assistance of the WSBA and promoters. One noticeable absence in the race was the presence of any junior riders (girls and boys 10-18). There are opportunities for junior racers from novice to expert through local teams, but the participation could be a lot more than it is. There is the Seattle Lance Armstrong Junior Series starting the end of May, which has relatively safe and fun racing available for different age groups for girls and boys. More info here: http://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=346509004740&ref=ts

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