Time to tip the scales

Hey team, this one’s just a quick post to remind you of Kathryn Bertine’s excellent documentary project Half the Road. You may have heard Sarah and I talking about it on recent podcasts, or even heard the episode where we interviewed Kathryn about the project and her career.

Half the Road is an important documentary and a project I believe in very much because it provides an almost unique opportunity to tell a compelling story about professional women’s cycling in a medium that would normally be beyond it. A lot of credit has to go to the drive and determination Kathryn herself has shown in shooting and working tirelessly on the documentary.

About 4 weeks ago Kathryn launched an IndieGogo fundraising campaign to help raise the money needed to secure Olympic footage (which is VERY expensive), enter the film in competitions, complete the editing and assist with other associated costs. I commented at the time that the EP credit reward option was probably the easiest and cheapest EP credit I’ve seen. Someone has definitely paid attention and just a few days ago Half the Road got great news.

Today we (I say “we” collectively, because all fans of women’s cycling, cycling, sport and women stand to gain so much from this) are super close to getting this project funded. At the time of writing this, there’s a bit over $10,000 that needs to be raised. So, if you haven’t already I’m calling on you now to donate, tweet, facebook, email, go door-to-door in your neighbourhood. Maybe rob your local drug dealer (NOTE: For legal reasons I can’t recommend that you actually rob your local drug dealer, or anybody for that matter. So don’t rob anyone.)

But the point is that it’s time for us to tip the scales and make this thing happen. Let’s do it.

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Help a USA cyclist get to the Giro Rosa

I saw this fundraiser to help Brianna Walle get to the Giro Rosa, on Jenn Levo’s tumblr.  This drives me crazy – Walle has been given a place to race for Team USA at the Giro Rosa – the women’s Grand Tour, by far the biggest stage race the women’s peloton has – but only if she can raise $1,500 to cover her travel and insurance expenses.

Now, I do understand that travelling from the USA to Europe is expensive – but if USA Cycling is prepared to enter the race, they should want the best riders there, regardless of if they have the money to travel or not.  It absolutely shouldn’t be that only riders with the cash can race, because that’s ultimately prioritising financial background over racing skills.  They’ll be the only national team in the race – but what does that matter, if it’s not the best riders, but those who can afford it?
It’s also worth reminding people that when Team Australia brings riders over, they’re paid for, as a reward for their skills – and that’s a LOT more expensive than a trip from the States!

BUT!  As dimspace said on twitter, the good thing is, she’s raised nearly all the money in less than 24 hours, and only has $200 to go – can you help her reach that target?  She’s a great rider – a first-year pro ho’s been working hard for Optum-Kelly Benefits all season, and just this week was third in the Nature Valley ITT, despite having a mechanical problem that left her in the little ring for half the race.  Read about that on Velonews! And find out more about her on her website and twitter – and here’s hoping we’ll be reading all about her adventures in Italy very soon!

More cyclists raising money for good causes

One of the fun things about sending out prizes for the Social Media Jersey has been hearing what riders are doing with the money.  Whether it’s being put towards helping them travel to races, enabling them to have a lovely treat, or just going towards living costs, it’s made me really happy that all of us, working together, have made a little difference in the riders’ lives.  And some of them have asked that we donate their prizes to causes close to their hearts – so I think it’s time for a second edition of cyclists (and a cyclist’s relative) raising money for charity – some Jersey winners and some not, but all great causes that I’m sure they’d love if you could support.

Emma Johansson is a long-term supporter of the Barncancer Fonden, a Swedish children’s cancer charity who run an annual fundraising bike ride through Sweden, the Ride of Hope.  Emma is using her $300 Jersey prize to kickstart a campaign for this year’s Ride, and you can support it here.  You might need google translate to help with the page, but it’s very easy indeed, and SUCH a good cause!  Emma’s fundraising drive runs right through to next year’s Ride, ending on 31st August 2013.  And yeah, I *am* thinking that cycling through Sweden for a great charity sounds like the perfect holiday!

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Cyclists raising money for good causes

Specialized-lululemon and Right To Play

One of the many things to love about Specialized-lululemon is their commitment to supporting Right To Play.  They took the charity on when they were Highroad, and do all kinds of fun work for them – for instance, Ally Stacher’s fundraiser in Asheville, USA (where Stacher, Emilia Fahlin and Loren Rowney “baked an aggressive amount of baked goods and sold them throughout the day”:-))

So I really love them using their ride at tomorrow’s Team Time Trial World Champs to raise more money.  They’re asking fans to pledge to donate money if the team ends up on the podium.  Now, I think they’re guaranteed the win, so only do this if you can afford it! But it’s a bloody good cause, so please donate for them – I’m sure they’d appreciate whatever you can afford.

More on their website – and here’s the donations page on the RTP site.  If, like me, you can be a bit slow, you donate through the red button at the top.  I assume it’ll link up to the S-L page, because the internet is clever like that.

Meredith Miller, Pretty in Pink

The other cycling fundraiser this week, is the opening of USA cyclocrosser & roadie, Meredith Miller’s, campaign to raise money for breast cancer – “Pretty In Pink“.

This is the third year Miller’s run this campaign, where she races in pink and runs a whole load of fun fundraising efforts.

You can buy this great t-shirt, Pink is the new Fast, for just USA $22 – hit the shop here, and there’s also a Pink is the new Fast cycling jersey for USA $69.95 – all profits to the Hope Lives! Lydia Doby breast cancer support centre – and she’s also selling raffle tickets, with some fabulous prizes, at 2 USGP Cyclcocross Races, the Planet Bike Cup in Wisconsin and the SmartWool Cup in Colorado.

Read all about Miller’s fundraising plan – to raise $10,000 this year – on her website.  And if you, can, support it.  That’s an awesome t-shirt, guaranteed to make you ride faster!

#Fanbackedwomensteam

Finally, as part of the ongoing online conversation about how fans of women’s cycling can help support the sport we love, Matrix-Prendas‘ DS Stefan Wyman has ideas for how this might work.  Read all about the #fanbackedwomensteam idea – it’s evolving into how fans can support the whole of the British women’s racing scene, rather than just one team, and how, working together, we can change the sport.  It’s exciting – if you’d like to get involved, email Stef, through his address on the page.

The Social Media Jersey – You only get ONE vote, use it wisely

It’s been an awesome journey to get to this point. Once again a huge thanks to everyone who has donated, tweeted, facebooked, YouTubed, podcasted, blogged, MySpaced, Friendstered, Craigslisted (is that even social media?) or whatevered this competition. It’s brilliant. Together we’ve already raised (at the time of writing) $2010 on the official count but of course, that’s going to change by the time you’re reading this.

We’ve seen some amazingly cool racing and we’ve seen some great use of social media. You can review the nominations for the Giro Toscana here, and for the Tour l’Ardèche and Ladies Brain Wash Tour here.

I greatly encourage you to review the nominations before casting your vote because you only get one vote.

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UPDATED!! Social Media Jersey nominations from l’Ardèche and Brainwash!

Yesterday Dan posted a list of the riders from the Giro Toscana who have been nominated to win real cash prizes in the Unofficial Unsanctioned Social Media Jersey – and we’ve already had nominations from riders in the Tour de l’Ardèche and the Brainwash Ladies Tour!  We’ll update this post as we get the nominations in, so keep checking back – and of course, if you see any social media from riders at any of the three races that you’d like to nominate – blogs, tweets, photos, videos, blogs on team sites, anything as long as it’s public – you can do so in the comments here, to me at @_pigeons_ or Dan at @entendered on twitter, or email us at prowomenscycling[at]gmail[dot]com.  There’s more information on the nominations process here.

Can you believe that the prize pot – donated by women’s cycling fans – is now up to $1,725?  All of that money (well, minus transfer fees!) will go to riders – so any small amount helps (the donation page is here) – and, of course, we’d love it if you could click through to the rider and team blogs and sites, so they can see that we all appreciate what they do!

UPDATE!!  You can vote for the winners in the Megapoll, here!

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The Social Media Jersey – NOMINATIONS!

We’ve had such a fantastic week of fundraising, and we’re aiming to keep going until we can raise as much as possible, but it’s now time for the Unofficial Unsanctioned Social Media Jersey competition to start in earnest – we’re opening up nominations to win the prizes!

Who is the Jersey for?

The Jersey is a prize for any rider racing the Giro Toscana (29th August – 2nd September), Tour de l’Ardèche (3rd-9th September) and the Brainwash Ladies Tour (4th-9th September) who produces any kind of social media about those races.  So this week, nominations open just for Toscana.  The social media can be in any language, or any platform – eg blogs, team sites, twitter, flickr, youtube, facebook, instagram etc etc – as long as it’s publicly viewable (so not a private or friends-only facebook, or protected twitter)

Riders can be nominated for just 1 tweet, a photo, or for a whole series of blogs, or for a range of different social media.

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