Well, this is all rather embarrassing and uncomfortable, but I’ve been told I’ve got to tell you that I’ve been nominated for an award, at the inaugural Women’s Cycling Awards, created by the London Bike Show and Cycling UK. Here goes….
I’d find this a whole lot easier if it had been Singletrack that had been nominated for the award, because a) then it wouldn’t be me and b) I think it’s Singletrack that should be taking the credit. I’m just someone who happens to be in a lucky position of having a job where I get to write about bikes, and the even luckier position of doing that for an independent publisher that lets me get on with it and write more or less whatever I like. Having met other writers in the industry who only ever get to test women-specific bikes, or go on product launches for women’s products, or write about women’s issues, I know I’m very lucky to get to write about all aspects of bikes, and Singletrack (Mark and Chipps specifically) should be given credit for being more progressive than much of the industry.
It’s a little bit funny being nominated for a ‘Women’s Cycling Award’ when I spend quite a lot of time trying to just write about cycling, and not end up pigeonholed as a ‘women’s writer’. Having said that, I know I have a platform that any campaigner would be glad of, so I do try to use it. Sometimes that means I write opinionated things, and sometimes that means I publish stories by women, or about women. Luckily, Singletrack also has a female designer, so I have an easy ally when it comes to trying to increase the number of pictures of women in the magazine.
There are 12 categories in the Awards, and I’m in the category of ‘Women’s Cycling Writer of the Year’, which ‘recognises those whose writing promotes women’s cycling, whether through mainstream media, books, the cycling press, or through online blogging. The nominees have all contributed positive coverage of women’s cycling in the last 12 months.’
In the interests of self promotion, I’ve got to pick a few articles I’m proud of. Here goes:
- YT Jeffsy review – I was the only female writer sent by any media outlet to this global launch, and I’d been publicly critical of the marketing of the first Jeffsy, so the pressure was on to provide a solid technical appraisal of the bike.
- Sick Bicycle report – This took hours of research and writing, and ended up being one of the most read stories of the year.
- Inside the Hope Factory – Making videos is a whole new skill for me, so getting this bit of nerd heaven on camera and all edited together feels like quite an achievement.
- Red. Rocks – I love the chance to write creatively – something that’s easier outside of tech reviews and product news. You can decide what I’m really writing about here.
The other nominees on this list have written whole books, and are actual proper journalists… I’m a project manager who likes bikes and gets to write about them in between annoying Chipps about deadlines. So, while I’m honoured to be nominated, you should probably vote for one of the other people on this list. But, if you like the fact that an independent magazine and website exists where people like me are free to be people like me, then I’d be very happy if you’d show your support for Singletrack. You can subscribe, buy a t-shirt, buy a bell, tell your friends about us, or, if you really really want to, you can vote for me here. You can also vote for some other great MTB nominees in the other categories – including the Hopetech Women’s Enduro.
Here’s a bit about the Women’s Cycling Awards:
There is inequality in British cycling. While women make up 50% of the population they only cycle a quarter of the miles of men. The Women’s Cycling Awards recognises those women who are bucking the trend and inspiring others to dust off their bikes and go out riding.
The awards celebrate female talent and achievements from across the cycling world – from record breakers to neighbourhood champions – and will see the winners announced during a ceremony on the opening day of the London Bike Show on Friday 27th March 2020 at ExCel London
The London Bike Show, having achieved an unprecedented 29% female attendance at the 2019 show through providing a more inclusive program, is looking to do even better for 2020, challenging the industry trend of catering primarily for male audiences. The Women’s Cycling Awards is an opportunity to showcase the increasing level of interest in women’s sport and further encourage participation.
Consisting of a total of 12 categories, 11 of which have had shortlists selected by a panel of high profile women working in the cycling industry, the awards include a wide range of categories from Pro Rider of the Year to Volunteer of the Year and Unsung Cycling Heroine. The accolades cover the full spectrum of female involvement in representing, participating, supporting and inspiring others to stay active. An outstanding achievement award will be given to one of 11 category winners who, above all others, stood out in their efforts to promote women’s cycling.