Thank you for calling us dorky. Thats just about the damn best compliment you can give us. In a sport where elitism and cattiness are some of the gender sterotypes I've encountered, any ounce of dorkiness certainly can't hurt.
I am the bella that promoted that UCI race. I am the bella that posted that blog. I am the co-founder of Velo Bella. I suppose that makes me the queen of the dorks? Aww so be it. Pass me my flair, my beer, and let me finish this little response...
The sponsor stuff you saw
on my ridiculous blog, was the prizes we received for the Surf City race series we promoted. Winners of the 3 race series were treated to what I personally consider the best merchandise payout of any race series in our area. Every single item you saw in those photos was given out to a racer in categories that ranged from Jr women to Men A and all kind of fun in between. Oh let me tell you, I was tempted to Ebay
that shit...but alas...damn conscience keeps winning.
Unfortunately, I could not find similar success with finding a financial sponsor for our UCI race. We lost about 2K at that race. I bumped the women's prize money as much as my personal pocketbook could handle. Yes, my pocket book because if you got a check at that race...thats my name, address and wimpy checking account you see on it. Maybe the lack of financial success speaks about our abilities to promote at the elite level. And with that I cannot diasagree, which is why we are not promoting a UCI event next year. And while I did all I could to cover the difference, I can only do so much without seriously cutting into my personal beer tab.
But I still consider that Watsonville race a success. Why? Because we also spent a little bit of energy encouraging Women Category C riders to come out and race
? (Women Category C is a category we encouraged local promotors to add to lists about 2 years ago by funding it with prizes for the promotors). For the Watsonville race we offered a CX bike donated by a local shop to be raffled off to all entrants in the Women C event. Just over 40 beginning women racers
showed up that day to give Cyclocross a try. Amazing if I don't say so myself. Additionally the woman who won the bike is currently racing a late season cx series on it and it absolutely HOOKED on cx and encouraging her friends to come out and race with her.
Also, in addition to Cat C for women, we offered clinics to beginning racers
before all of our events, and kids races
. And free pies
..which of course as nothing to do with anything, except that those damn pies were good.
So, if a little dorkiness encourages more people to the sport, but I couldn't afford to pay the elite women racers as much as I wanted to, so be it. I, for one, am pretty content with the way it all turned out.
Plus the after party was pretty darn kicking.
So should promotors be doing more for women's cycling? Is it their responsibility? Is that where elite whining...errr I mean constructive criticism should be aimed? Or is it all of our responsibility, especially the ambassadors at the elite level, to get more people out there racing so that race promotion, and elite women's racing, becomes financially viable?
I honestly dunno. Mostly just wanted to throw my meaningless 2 cents around and give the keyboard a workout. I lurk on this list because I dig the sport and this lists' energy and gib gab. So carry on...you too, Sharon. Different opinions don't bother me...hell bring it sister. Just maybe buy me a beer or pie or something next time.
Just don't make me dance with that half nekkid Richard
Cool (Written to the MABSBS list in response to:1. Why don't they just use some of the money they saved by not offering a realwomen'sprize list at the Crank Bros race? Or if they spent less money on neon hair extensions perhaps they could send riders to races and shit. Oh wait- they can find plenty of money to send riders to races (like almost everything on the east coast) that offer more than theUCI *minimum* women's prize list, but at thier own race they shaft everyone who came from all over the country to do a race put on by a women's development cycling team.Sick of dorky bike chicks who take and take but don't put out,SSHARONand 2. @ Jon- Sorry, I didn't know the Bella's were so destitute. I must have gotten the wrong idea after reading this blog where a Bella was always writing about unpacking box after box of sponsor stuff. I can't remember which Bella it was, but I never saw her at any races.@ Alex- Thanks for the invite, but I don't need to embrace gender stereotypes tomake me feel good about myself. But you're right about the Bella's needing leaders, cause the ones they have right now certainly dropped the ball when presented with an opportunity to fight for equal treatment for women.It's pretty sad that the UCI C1 race presented by a women's development club was the onethat awarded the least amount of prize money to the fewest women. Did you know thatVello Bella rider Barb Howe personally won more money at the two Whitmores races than her club gave out at the GP? What's up with that? Perhaps if more promoters gave Elite women racers the financial opportunities that they give the Elite men we wouldn't need to have these fundraisers every year to send riders toworlds. Just a thought.Love,SHARONps: I *always* wave to other cyclists, even if I occasionly use only one finger to do it.)