Huge news broke today as Emma Pooley announced that she’ll be retiring from pro cycling, and Sunday’s Commonwealth Games road race will be her last big race before she be moves to long course triathlon and mountain running. As you can imagine, we’ll be so disappointed to see her leave, but we hope her all the best for the future.
Before the announcement Emma spoke exclusively with Sarah in an interview for Rouleur. Please head through and read it for the full story on the thinking behind Emma’s decision, why she wanted to make the announcement now and what her memories of the sport will be.
In an additional exclusive for us, you can hear Sarah’s full conversation with Emma here.(right-click, save-as to download)
(please excuse all the background noise and the times the call dropped out – the life of a bike rider means using whatever internet connection you can find). (1:11:08 MIN / 68.31 MB)
Follow Emma on her adventures in triathlon, and send her a tweet on her twitter, especially if you know a publisher who can help her achieve her cookbook dreams! Watch her race the Commonwealth Games ITT on Thursday 31st July, and the Road Race on Sunday 3rd August – here’s a guide to watching the races.
You can read about the Le Tour Entier campaign to get La Course by Le Tour de France, which Pooley was an integral part of, on the LTE website and twitter – and make Emma happy by tweeting the UCI to ask for more women’s races and email the ASO to ask for more women’s racing in Le Tour.
Here are some of our favourite Emma Pooley moments:
The final 6km in the 2010 GP Plouay World Cup (Pooley’s the short rider in the GB kit – Marianne Vos is in the white World Cup leader’s jersey)
I’ll be hunting out video from La Course – the women’s Champs Elysées race on the final stage of the Tour de France, but until then, check this out – video from the camera on Marianne Vos‘ bike. Look at that Rabo-Liv lead-out train in the beginning, and then how she stole a ride from Specialized-lululemon‘s Lisa Brennauer!
Here’s what’s coming up next in live women’s road cycling:
- Commonwealth Games – 31st July the ITT and 3rd August the Road Race. I’ve got the full guide to watching the races here – but there should be streams, hopefully.
- Sparkassen Giro, 3rd August – the 5th round of the Road World Cup – it’s not live but we can follow on twitter, and there’ll be a 20min UCI videos from the race within a week.
- Prudential Ride London, 9th August – women’s crit race, Armitstead v Vos on the Mall in London, shown live on the BBC, so there should be streams too.
- Open de Suède Vårgårda World Cups – the team time trial World Cup on 22nd August won’t be live, but the World Cup road race on 24th August will be streamed by Swedish tv, so hopefully we can watch it live, because it’s a hilly lap race, can be won in all sorts of ways.
- GP de Plouay, 30th August – the final round of the Road World Cup, and it’s usually streamed live by French tv – always a superb race.
- Road World Championships, 21st-27th September, there are almost always some streams.
That’s what we should see live – there should be lots of videos in the intervening races too – I love the CyclingFever calendar for their great information, and Velofocus for race previews. I’ll be putting posts up about how to watch the road and the MTB live nearer each race – here’s the section for that – and you can see videos I find from the races with the video tag. And for more advice on how to follow women’s racing as it happens, here’s a guide I wrote.
On Sunday 27th July it’ll be one of the most talked-about women’s races of the year, and probably the easiest race to watch live since the 2012 Olympic Games – La Course by le Tour de France.
The race is up and down the Champs Elysées, 89km, 13 laps of the 6.85 kilometre course, on the cobbles, with 2 corners at one end:
Velofocus has a race previous with streetview of the route.
It starts at 12:50 French time, CEST (11:50am UK BST; 8:50pm Aus AEST, 6:50am USA EST, 3:50am USA PST) and is due to finish around 2 hours later. It will be shown live on a huge range of tv stations worldwide – 153 countries covered – and you can find the broadcasters at the bottom of the La Course page – or in this graphic:
Holy moly there’s a whole lot of racing to talk about this week! Hot on the heels of the Giro Rosa came Thüringen Rundfahrt, the Tour de Bretagne and new stage race the BeNe Ladies Tour. We cover all the stages in all the races and note several outstanding achievements, including Trixi Worrack and Evie Stevens racing Thüringen and the Giro Rosa back to back, stringing together 17 consecutive days of racing before they were done, and the results of several of the smaller teams in the peloton who definitely maximised their chances to shine. We also take a few moments to talk about #WomensCyclingWeek and (spoiler!) Sarah might have feelings about this one. But it’s all a lead in to the Commonwealth Games starting (which is kind of a big deal if you’re from a Commonwealth country, sort of like the Olympics because we can’t wait a whole 4 years to win more medals) and La Course by the Tour De France on Sunday (which is being televised live pretty much everywhere and therefore will be fucking amazing!). And after we talk about all of that, there’s the usual rundown of blogs, videos, tweets and various other odds and ends we saw. In other words, brace yourselves, this one’s big! (1:17:24 MIN / 74.30 MB)
To stream the stagiest podcast available all week, click here (right-click, save-as to download).
Links for things we loved and saw in last week’s women’s cycling
All the racing video and results from the 2014 Thüringen Rundfahrt (which Loren Rowney and Lisa Brennauer previewed before it started), the Tour de Bretagne and the BeNe Ladies Tour (and there’s a lot!) in Sarah’s post on Podium Café. We liked the WielerVideo interview with Evie Stevens on her personal Grand Tour, 17 consecutive days of racing
How to clean your bike like a pro – by Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies
The BMX World Champs are on this week in Rotterdam – and one of the great things about these Champs is they have races for tons of age groups, from 5 years old – and the elite finals will be streamed live on 27th July, on Red Bull tv and on the UCI youtube, and archived in the same places afterwards
The stream will start at 14:20 CEST (1:20pm UK BST, 8:20am USA EST and 10:20pm Aus AEST) (click through for a countdown to when it starts in your timezone) – and if you know anything about Dan and me, you’ll know we’ll be cheering for Caroline Buchanan to win again! More info on the race website., facebook and follow their twitter, where they’ll be adding all the results of the other competitions as they happen – and here’s the competition promo:
The Commonwealth Games are something that are pretty specific, but if you’re not a Commonwealth country, Glasgow 2014 will still be a lot of fun to watch – and it’s live cycling, which is always great, especially for track fans, despite the lack of parity, and I’ll tell you how to watch it. Aschwin Kruders of WielerVideo asked Lizzie Armitstead and Gracie Elvin to explain the Games
What a Giro Rosa this year! This week Sarah and I talk about the spectacular racing, with several surprises. Among the reasons to celebrate, we enjoy the fact that the race is big enough to now generate International Fan Polemica ™ about tactics! How cool is that?! We do take the time to break down our view of events on the “controversial” stage 9 (spoiler alert: we didn’t find it that controversial really). BUT, even if all this does is encourage more international fans to love their favourite riders even more and wish for victory over their apparent nemeses, then YAY! In addition to recapping the rest of the Giro, we also talk European Championships and go through the first couple of stages from Thüringen Rundfahrt (a race close to Dan’s beer-soaked heart) and note the huge range of races coming up shortly, including La Course by the Tour de France and the Commonwealth Games. It’s a huge episode, but it’s worth the listen, if only to make comprehensive notes to tell Sarah and Dan exactly why they’re wrong about everything. (Warning: if you’re new to our ‘cast, it does have a bit of swearing!) (1:32:46 MIN / 89.06 MB)
To stream all the Polemica you could want and more, click here (right-click, save-as to download).
Cool stuff to check out:
First off, we loved this great video from Specialized-lululemon about the love of the bike and why they do what they do
Also, this great video from Specialized NLBE with the Boels-Dolmans team about their equipment, goals and motivations
This is an amazing feature. Sarah has an in-depth conversation with the incredible Emma Pooley, who won three stages of the 2014 Giro Rosa and was clearly the best climber of the race. This is an absolute must listen! (28:47 MIN / 27.63 MB)
To stream the climbingest Giro Rosa interview of 2014, click here (right-click, save-as to download).
If you’d rather read interviews than listen to them (or why not do both!) the transcript of this is on Podium Café.
You can read Sarah’s interview with Pooley from before the Giro Rosa, and the Q&As with her after Stage 6 and after Stage 8 on Podium Café – and to find out what she was doing in the eight months before the season started, listen to Sarah’s interview with her from April – or read Part 1 and Part 2 on the Café. And all the Podium Café coverage of the Giro Rosa is in the Storystream – and you can see all the videos right here, especially her wins on Stage 6, Stage 8 and Stage 9.