The high stakes of Women’s Keirin racing in Japan

If you’ve ever been to watch a track cycling event you’ve probably watched a very unusual race called the Keirin. I’ve always enjoyed it and for a number of years I’ve been aware that it’s a big sport in Japan where it was developed. Men’s Keirin racing is very popular but women are also involved and it’s growing. Here’s a few insights based on some research I undertook: Keirin is a track cycling race where between six to nine riders race over about 2 km around a velodrome. It is a relatively new Olympic event, first raced by the men

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The Skinny Lattes – getting more women on bikes

I first heard about the Adelaide-based women only cycling club, The Skinny Lattes a couple of years ago but it wasn’t until now that I made contact. I previously profiled a women’s only club based in Austin, Texas in the US, a country where I’m sure there are plenty of women’s only clubs. However, The Skinny Lattes is the only one I’m aware of in Australia (please feel free to correct me if I’m wrong about that). I recently caught up with Belinda Bramley who is the Club Secretary and one of the founding members. When was the Skinny Lattes

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A quick chat with Anna Meares

I was lucky enough to catch up with the amazing Anna Meares via email for an interview. I find Anna very inspiring and have been lucky enough to see her race a couple of times at the velodrome in Sydney. Q: My Sydney Cycling Club, Lidcombe Auburn Cycle Club (LACC) has a girls’ development squad called the Pixies. They ride and race both track and road and range in age from about six to 13. What words of wisdom could you offer them? A: I have heard of the Pixies (very cute little group and cute name). My advice would

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Why cycling is the best sport according to 8 year old Ava

Eight year old, Ava Giramondo is a member of the youth development squad of my cycling club Lidcombe-Auburn Cycle Club (LACC) and she recently presented to her Year 2 class at PLC Sydney, her reasons for selecting cycling as the best sport. When I read it, it seemed to me that Ava’s reasons were not dissimilar to many female cyclists. I particuarly like the bit about how she and her friends don’t have to hang out with the boys! Enjoy…. Here’s Ava’s presentation: Good morning/afternoon 2c. In my opinion cycling is the best sport. The type of cycling I’m going

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Trailblazing female bike racers of the 1880s

As well as being a keen cyclist, I am also a lover of social history and when I get to combine two things of interest I’m pretty content. I have a great book called Wheels of Change by Sue Macy in my home library and thought I would share a story I enjoyed. If you think that female cyclists in the past 20 or so years have been real trailblazers then think again, because the true trailblazers where the women that were racer bicycles way back in the late 1800s. An early American racer Elsa von Blumen of Rochester New

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Meet Olympic medalist Annette Edmondson

Late last year I was at an event staged by Australian Cycling Executives (ACE) and Annette (Nettie) Edmondson was a special guest. I was fortunate enough to have a chat with Nettie and asked her if I could interview her for Women Who Cycle. Here’s the result: Q: How old were you when you started riding? What got you started? I was 13 years old when I was selected for cycling by the Talent Identification Program at the South Australian Institute of Sport after they tested a range of students for their physical attributes and capabilities. I had never considered

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Meet Australia’s Olympic women’s track team

One aim of this blog is to educate people about the upper echelons of women’s cycling. Men’s cycling gets so much focus and so much airplay that I feel duty bound to help correct this in some small way. One of the great things about the Olympic Games is that we all get exposed to a myriad of sports we’d never usually pay any attention to, and that includes women’s sport. I personally love to watch track cycling both live and on TV so I thought I’d give a little preview of the Australian women’s track team so when you’re

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Junior development at Lidcombe Auburn Cycle Club

One of the things you will have learned if you’ve read other parts of this blog is that I’m a member of a great cycle club called Lidcombe Auburn Cycle Club known as LACC. A new innovation for the club is its focus on junior riders or more specifically its junior female riders under the stewardship of the very enthusiastic Gay Chandler and her trusty husband and sidekick Ian Watson. I caught up with Gay recently and asked her a few questions about the team she’s nurturing known as the Pixies. Q: When did the Pixies team start? A: The

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Kate Bates – the next phase begins

One thing I’m beginning to learn as I dabble in the world of professional sport which is something I haven’t really done before is that things can change quickly. A sponsor pulls out unexpectedly, an injury occurs or in Kate Bate’s case an injury reoccurs. I originally spoke to Kate a couple of weeks ago and she told me all about how her focus was on the London Olympics. So I wrote my blog post and as I sometimes do I sent it to Kate to fact check to make sure I’d got all the details right. I got a

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Women cyclists should give track a go

I had an opportunity to do a great two-day bike skills workshop earlier this year. The first day was on the Dunc Grey Velodrome at Bass Hill and while I hadn’t previously considered track, I thought it would be a great opportunity to improve my bike skills. My partner Phillip started riding track last year, firstly to compete in the winter track series called RAW at the velodrome and then the summer series at Lidcombe run by our bike club LACC. So I’ve watched him plenty of times but never really considered giving it a go myself. The bike skills

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