Saturday, 28 July 2012

Idiocy at the Olympics does women's cycling no favours

So here we are, a week after a British rider won the world's greatest race and with cycling enjoying more popularity than ever before in Britain - and there's a major, international race going on courtesy of the Olympics. Great. Loads of people will be watching.

Which means loads of people will have just heard Chris Boardman's idiotic and destructive suggestion that the reason Jeannie Longo is still taking part in - and winning - races at the age of 54 must mean that women's cycling isn't as competitive as the men's.

Anyone who has ever watched a women's bike race will know that this is about as wrong as it's possible to be - so it's a pity that absolute morons come out with such utter tripe and discourage people who haven't seen a women's race before from doing so. It's precisely because of the smaller audiences, caused by this sort of thing, that women's cycling has difficulties in attracting sponsors and teams exist of annual budgets that wouldn't even cover the cost of the mood lighting on Sky's team buses.

1 comment:

  1. I watched both the men's and women's races via British Eurosport and was really disappointed in their coverage of the women's race in comparison to the men's.

    They switched over to the men's right on schedule and had maybe 1 or 2 commercial breaks for the 1.5 hours of coverage.

    The next day, they were a half an hour late covering the women's race in favor of a women's tennis match and women's rowing heat. I don't understand why a rowing heat took precedence over a medal race, especially when a British rider was in the break. Then, once they finally switched over to the race, they took commercial breaks every 5 minutes! If it hadn't been for Twitter, we wouldn't have had a clue what was going on.

    The discrepancy in coverage was incredible. They never broadcast women's cycling on Eurosport. It would have been nice if they had given it the screen time it was due and promised for this once in a while event. Meanwhile, Armitstead took home the country's first medal while the men's "dream team" failed to deliver anything worth reporting.

    The damage these networks are doing to women's cycling is abominable.