While the European cycling world runs their National Championships over the same pre-Tour de France & Giro Rosa weekend (this year 25th-28th June), in the USA they’re earlier, which works so well in the women’s cycling calendar – post California, pre-Gatineau and the Philadelphia World Cup. And because the USA loves us cycling fans, the road races are streamed live!
The USA Road Championships are in Chattanooga, Tennessee this year from 23rd-25th May, and include the road race & ITT for professional women, men and paracyclists. The women’s able-bodied road race is on Monday 25th May, at 9am North American CDT (10am EDT; 3pm UK BST; 16:00 Euro CEST; midnight Aussie AEST) and we can watch it live (and archived) on the USA Cycling Youtube:
You can also follow on twitter with USA Cycling, and the #USPro hashtag, and there are more details of all the other races and the courses on the competition website. The able-bodied and para-cycling ITTs and the para road races won’t be shown live this year, but use the livetiming, and twitter to follow them too. And of course, I’ll round up everything I see from the races after the weekend. The women’s road race is always super-exciting, attacking racing, so tune in!
So, usually in the week after a Road World Cup, I’d be putting up the 26 minute UCI highlights video, having already put up a post with their short highlights video and photos, race reports and more the day after the race. But, while it was the 2015 Tour of ChongMing Island World Cup on Sunday, we won’t be having anything from the UCI this year. Why? I have no idea. They gave us all of that last year, and a short video in 2013, so if you want to see any moving images from this year’s race, all you can do is look at Wiggle Honda’s video.
It’s frustrating, because while the UCI talks about how women’s cycling media is their priority, but so far this year we’ve much had less overall than we did last year, even when eg the Ronde van Drenthe was streamed in Dutch. And it’s especially frustrating, because ChongMing, being in China, is so much harder to get information on than the other rounds, and has additional obstacles for teams racing there, from travel and visa issues through to riders having to be hyper-vigilant not to eat contaminated meat. I have to wonder why the UCI think teams will continue to go through all of that to race there, when even the governing body has the race on a lower tier than all the other World Cup. Sure, there are points, but ChongMing never impacts on the overall World Cup which is, I’m sure, a reason why teams like Boels-Dolmans, Rabo-Liv, Velocio-SRAM, Liv-Plantur and ORICA-AIS skipped it this year.
Sigh. So I’m looking for some women’s cycling good news, but what I find it this – Lucy Martin writing on the Matrix Procycling site about what happened with Estado de Mexico-Faren last year, how she wasn’t paid, and the UCI couldn’t help. This stood out:
I decided this was the best time to retell what happened after my latest phone conversion with the UCI, which has kind of concluded the case. I was advised that taking legal action against my former team would be costly and high risk and simply not worth doing seeing as I already have missed nine months salary. So that option has gone. As this has taken so long, my second option to pursue payment via the UCI Bank Guarantee put in place under the UCI rules was also not an option, as that has now expired. In any case, the UCI informed me it was likely the bank guarantee for the team was never in fact set up and even if it was, it is so difficult to communicate with the Mexican Federation and the fact that there be other creditors owed this money, that this isn’t really an option and that is impossible to receive.
Ugh. So much wrong with this – the only bright spot is how impressed I am with Lucy for speaking out, because as I’ve written before, there is huge pressure on riders to keep quiet when they’re exploited (and not only financially, but also sexually, I’m still horrified about that), and last year was at least the third year I’d heard rumours that riders on a Faren team were unpaid.
So, I think I’ll stop typing now, because it’s all so depressing. There are bright spots – confusedspider just pointed out there are 2015 RaboLiv videos on vimeo that I hadn’t known about, and there’s some great racing set to be streamed, or watched on replay this week – crits and MTB – and on Monday there’s live video from the USA National Championships. So it always could be worse! But still, if you want me, I’ll be the one in the corner with my head under a blanket, feeling miserable.
It’s probably officially summer now in the Northern Hemisphere [looks out of the window, laughs] and that means CRITS! And crits mean racing we can watch, at least in the UK and the USA, so I’m here to tell you how to watch them. Welcome to the world of the Tour Series, the Milk Race and the USA Crits!
Firstly, if you’re not already a crit fan, why should you watch them? When I started getting into road cycling, with the Tour de France as the pinnacle, I was confused by crits. They’re only an hour long, they’re on the same course, surely they’re just bunch sprints following some heart-stopping crashes?
Well yes, kind of, but they’re so much more than that. There’s so much action in them, they’re all adrenaline all the time, and riders above all have to be clever and gutsy as well as fast. And they’re fantastic to watch in real life, so much to see, and with the Tour Series races I’ve been to, great road-side commentary to help newbies understand. It’s the same course for women and men, and there are usually a ton of support races, including for handcyclists, so if you turn out you can see a lot of cycling. Best of all, as I say, we can watch & follow them from all over the world, and at an hour long, that’s easier to fit into busy lives than watching the stage races.
(This is obviously UK/USA-centric, but if you know how to follow and/or watch women’s crits in other countries, please do let me know in the comments or on twitter, and I’ll write a follow-up)
The Milk Race, 24th May 2015
It’s the first round of the 2015 Cross Country MTB World cup, and we can watch it live! I’m excited, are you?
It’s 22nd-24th May 2015, in Nové Město na Moravě, Czech Republic, 22nd-24th May, and here’s what’s being shown live, thanks to the wonderful folks at Red Bull Bike. Click the links and you’ll get the count-down to each race, and if you miss them live, they’ll be archived here as soon as the races are over:
- Women’s XCo World Cup, 24th May, 10:00 Euro CEST (9am UK BST; 4am USA EDT; 6pm Aussie AEDT)
- Men’s XCo World Cup, 24th May, 14:00 CEST (1pm BST, 8am EDT; 10pm AEDT)
If you can’t watch live, you can still follow along on the UCI MTB twitter. There is a ton of information, including videos and photos on the race website, and there’s more information on Red Bull Bike, including this profile of the women to watch out for. Here’s their course preview video, and article.
Update! And here’s Specialized’s video with Annika Langvad
No podcast this week, as Dan and I needed a break, but there was still a lot of racing, so here’s a round up of women’s cycling videos, blogs and links from the last week in road, BMX, MTB, a bit of track, and a surprising look at what a rider gets up to in her spare time….!
This week’s racing
TONS of video from this week!
The first videos are little highlights, the second are 30 minutes long
Ella Cycling Tips race report – and highlights:
Taking place in beautiful central Bristol on Saturday 20th June, there are races for juniors, Cat 1-4 women and 2 men’s races, Cat 3-4 and Cat 1-2. They’ve got a crowdfunder which has hit their initial target of £10,000, and they have 5 days left to reach their stretch goal of £15,000, and for just £12 you can help them achieve that AND get this fabulous t-shirt!
You can also enter via that page – they’re in the process of getting British Cycling registration, so it’ll count for points – and if you’re in/near Bristol on the day, why not pledge to be a volunteer too? Scroll down for more info!