Happy New Year!
New Year’s Eve is that traditional time to look back at the year, and make plots and plans for the future – and in blogging terms, it’s always fun to remind myself what I’ve done. So, some highlights from the blog, and things you may have missed from 2014. I know it’s a bit self-indulgent, but hell, that’s what this time of year is for!
My most viewed posts of 2014
Unsurprisingly, the top 5 most-read posts were guides on how to watch live racing – in order, starting with the most views, how to watch La Course, the 2014 Cyclocross World Championships, the Friends Life Women’s Tour, the Commonwealth Games cycling and the Giro Rosa. I put all my guides to watching racing in real life in my Live cycling section. And if you, like me, are excited about the #WT2015, here’s their first video of the year:
The actual 4th place goes to a post I didn’t even write this year, but people keep finding (possibly through some of the more bizarre search terms):
Number 6 on the list was another rant/rage-post: I am so sick of reading these stories, all about the frustration of reading this article on La Bicicleta México, alleging Mexican riders on Estado de México-Faren weren’t paid, but to add insult to injury, also faced discrimination within the team and unacceptable treatment from team staff. My heart-felt hope is that the UCI works out a process to support riders in 2015, so these stories become a thing of the past.
After that? Shopping posts – lots of shopping posts! Check out the Shopping section for gift guides, where you can buy team kit, cycling clothing for women who are XL and above, and a lot more – just check out the date they were written on, because some of the links are broken.
My own favourite thing I wrote in 2014
The thing I am most proud of writing last year was a tie – I am so, so proud that Emma Pooley trusted me to write her official retirement interview, which was published on the Rouleur website and they were kind enough to let me post the recording of the conversation as a podcast too – and I’m super-grateful to the Friends Life Women’s Tour for hiring me to run their live-tweeting throughout the race – listen to me talk about it with Dan, and you know I can’t wait for June’s edition!
Other interviews from 2014
I am so, so, incredibly grateful to every single rider and people who work behind the scenes in women’s cycling, who let me interview them this year – I so appreciate their time, generosity and kindness. If you missed any, here’s who I talked to in 2014
- Dan and I started the year in style, podcast-interviewing one of our favourite riders, the always funny and very clever Marijn de Vries
- Dan and my podcast-interview with Gracie Elvin, on winning the Aussie national championships two years in a row.
- Kirsten Wild, previewing the Ladies Tour of Qatar on Podium Café, and talking about lots more
- Tiffany Cromwell interview on Podium Café – part 1, on Omloop het Nieuwsblad, descending with Vos & more, and part 2, on the Specialized-lululemon team camp and life off the bike
- Interview with Annemiek van Vleuten on Podium Café, previewing the Ronde van Drenthe Road World Cup, among lots of other things
- Emma Johansson, just before she won the Trofeo Alfredo Binda World Cup – listen to it, or read it on Podium Café
- Ellen van Dijk, previewing the Ronde van Vlaanderen (just before she won it!) and talking about winning the 2013 World ITT Championships – listen to it, or read it
- My first interview with Emma Pooley, before her first race of the season, Flèche Wallonne, on what she’d been up to in her time away from the bike – listen to it, or read part 1, on finishing her PhD, running marathons in the snow, campaigning for women’s cycling, and supporting Amnesty International – and part 2, previewing the Flèche Wallonne and the Friends Life Women’s Tour.
- Canadian neo-pro Anika Todd talked to me about what it’s like to come late to cycling and then be thrown into the Spring Classics for the first time – listen to it, or read it
- 2011 and 2012 Junior Road World Champion Lucy Garner podcast-interviewed on the move to the senior ranks, and the (then-upcoming) Friends Life Women’s Tour
- Discussing what it’s like to work on race social media, with Clara Beard, who works for Tour Tracker and various USA races
- Ashleigh Moolman Pasio, the first rider from South Africa and Africa to get onto the podium of the Giro and the Road World Cup – listen to it here, or read it on Podium Café – part 1, about the Emakumeen Bira, cycling in S Africa and much more, and part 2, which includes how she got into racing, and how her catastrophic head injury as a teenager helps her keep perspective
- Emma Pooley again, on Podium Café, on winning the British ITT Champs, and previewing the Giro Rosa (amongst other things!)
- Giro Rosa previews – Q&As Part 1 with Ash Moolman-Pasio, Tiffany Cromwell, Megan Guarnier, Alison Powers, Jolien D’Hoore and Lucy Garner; Part 2 with Marianne Vos, Emma Johansson, Alena Amialiusik, Sharon Laws & the super-funny & honest Aussies Chloe Hosking and Jessie Maclean; Part 3, with Evelyn Stevens, Ellen van Dijk, Audrey Cordon, Hannah Barnes, Valentina Scandolara and Italian Champion Elena Cecchini on why she’s not riding; and Part 4, with Elisa Longo Borghini, Shelley Olds and Tayler Wiles
- Podium Café Q&As during the Giro after stages – Stage 2 Q&A with Valentina Scandolara; Stage 3 Q&A with Amanda Spratt & Vale Scandolara; Stage 4 Q&A with Spratty, Vale and Audrey Cordon; Stage 5 with Vale; Stage 6 with Spratty, Emma Pooley and Jolien d’Hoore; Stage 8 with Pooley, Megan Guarnier and Hannah Barnes
- Rabobank DS Koos Moerenhout on the Giro Rosa Stage 9 polemica
- The big Emma Pooley post-Giro interview, on coming back from a terrible Stage 1 to winning all three Mountains stages and the Queen of the Mountains jersey – listen to it or read it
Specialized-lululemonVelocio-SRAM owner/manager Kristy Scrymgeour on crowd-sourcing team funding and running the team, and the Team Time Trial World Cup – listen to it all, or read a partial transcription
- Guy Elliott was one of the organisers of the Friends Life Women’s Tour, and we talked all about what it took to run the race, and Guy’s views on women’s racing – listen to it here
- USA rider Amber Pierce has been on the podcast before, but this time I podcast-interviewed her about the rider support project she set up, the Network for Advancing Athletes.
- Pre Road World Champs Q&As with Lisa Brennauer, Marianne Vos, Iris Slappendel, Tiffany Cromwell, Loren Rowney, Audrey Cordon and Leah Kirchmann
- Dr Bridie O’Donnell may have retired, but OMG she has stories – listen to some of them here
- The road season may have been over, but that just means cyclocross is about to start! I talked to Helen Wyman about the differences between the USA and European scenes, and her work with the UCI and with races on promoting equality for women’s CX. We both like to talk, so this was a big one – listen to Part 1 and Part 2
- Amber Pierce again, with Sarah Fader, the owner of her new team, Pepper Palace, on the USA scene, crit racing and running a team – listen!
- The most-listened-to podcast-interview of the year was this one with Aussie paracyclist Alex Green – listen to it, or read it, to find out why
- One of my highlights of the year was when Lisa Brennauer won the ITT World Champs – and then came second in the Road Race. I talked to her about that and more – listen to it here, or read it instead
- Belgian track and cobbles rider Jolien d’Hoore had her break-out season, and she told me why she thinks that happened, and what’s next, in this podcast-interview
- Another rider who had her best season ever was cyclocrosser Sophie de Boer, who went from having no team at the end of 2013 to winning the 2014 Koppenbergcross – you can listen to it here
- 20-year old Danish cyclist Christina Siggaard told me in this podcast-interview all about how a terrible team situation made her learn and grow, and why she’s looking forward to 2014.
- Chloe Hosking is well-known for her gutsy sprinting and her wonderful blogging and social media – she told me about signing to Wiggle-Honda for 2015, and all kinds of other things – we both love to talk, so this is a long podcast!
- Guy Swarbrick started as a fan but now works as a track photographer and runs a great website and commentweetery – we talked photography and track cycling and more in my last podcast-interview of the year
If you want to read more things I wrote this year, including posts full of videos and links, you can obviously look through my blog, and all the things I wrote on Podium Café
Huge thanks to all the people who nominated the regular Unofficial Unsanctioned Women’s UCI Cycling Show, the weekly-in-season women’s cycling podcast with Dan, for a BikeBiz Cycling Media Award – and to everyone who voted for me to win the Total Women’s Cycling blogger of the year award. I can’t tell you how much it means. And thankyou, from the bottom of my heart, to everyone who funds me to interview riders and keep covering the sport, through my Patreon. It means so, so much, and I am just happy you like what I do. The friendships, conversations and community of women’s cycling fans has truly been one of the things that has made my 2014 shine.
I’m planning for 2014 to be even bigger and better, so if you have ideas, leave them in the comments, email me at prowomenscycling [at] gmail [dot] com, or tell me on twitter. And I always love talking to people about the sport, so if you every have questions or just want to talk pro cycling, get in touch, I’d love it.
Have a wonderful 2015 – here’s to the sport getting bigger and better in every way. I hope you have a fantastic year