Sponsoring women’s cycling leads to direct sales!

Yesterday I wrote about 10 ways we can all help grow women’s cycling, and in it, I talked about buying or using products that support riders, teams and races.  I said that I was sad that I couldn’t use Boels Rental products – but then my friend Nic replied to a tweet about the company:

It inspired me to ask my twitter followers to share things that they’ve bought, or used, because of the women’s cycling connection, and especially because companies have sponsored riders, teams and races.  The replies made me so happy, I wanted to share some them with you.

They include a lot of people who’ve bought bikes and related products, but they also cover everything from people making decisions about buying a pair of socks, or choosing  right up to a car, because companies sponsor the sport, and lots in between.  These are just a tiny snapshot, based on who saw my two tweets asking for examples, in around 24 hours, so it’s the tiniest tip of the iceberg of demonstrating how sponsoring cycling raises awareness and changes perceptions of a brand. What’s also interesting is how many people are still using products after the sponsors left the sport – in some cases, years later.

There were so many replies that I couldn’t include them all, or this post would go on for days – but thank you so much to everyone who shared these with me.  If you want to talk about this, or to share things to be included in Part 2, please leave me a comment below, or chat to me on twitter.   In no particular order…

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Podcast Special Feature – Episode 23 – Sarah Interviews Ashleigh Moolman

Hi everyone! Dan’s still bouncing all over Australia so we’ve made a slight change to our podcast schedule. We’ll be recording and posting a new episode this weekend, but in the meantime Sarah’s been busy keeping up her series of special one-on-one interviews. This week she talks with South African national champion (and African continental champion) Ashleigh Moolman about upcoming races like the Emakumeen Bira, her intimidating maths skills and how a nasty horse-riding accident changed her perspective on life. As regular listeners know, we’re big fans of Ash and not just her riding, but also her friendly and positive manners, along with her excellent social media. This is another great interview and well worth a listen. (49:38 MIN / 47.66 MB)

To stream the Ashleigh-est interview we’ve ever done, click here.



Or subscribe and never miss an episode, it’s FREE! Sign up via the iTunes store here OR via our RSS feed here.

If you would rather read this interview, there’s  a transcript over on Podium Café – part 1 is here.  UPDATE!  And Part 2 is here

You can read more about Ash on her excellent blog , where there are so many great posts – head in and have a look.  She’s got a fantastic twitter, too, and you can also follow her adventures through the Hitec Products website and twitter.

Last year Ash won the Boels Rental Hills Classic, and came third in the Flèche Wallonne World Cup, and Stage 4 of the Giro Rosa – watch the videos here

and here’s Sarah’s interview with Ash after Flèche, on Podium Café.

You can follow the Emakumeen Bira with our Podium Café friends, Babelia, Marcos and Saul – follow them on twitter through those links, and Babelia through the Road & Mud twitter account. Of course I’ve added them all to my live race tweeting twitter list, and we’ll have a race thread here on the Café too.  There is information on the race website, and previews on

And Road & Mud has a history of the Basque races, in Spanish or via google.  And if you didn’t see if last year, or want to be reminded of it, check out Saul’s article on being at the race, right here on the Café!

It Takes Two – A Dreamy Secret

Yet another romance title generator edition of your favourite love/dating/romance/racing column! You may remember us from previous editions of excellent advice on how to solve all your romantic woes (or make them irreparably worse) like What’s the Difference? or last week’s especially sweet, tangy episode, The Right Dessert.

It’s once again time for you to solicit the advice of the singlest cycling people you (don’t really) know! The jalapeno-fuelled Heather Nielson and I are once again ready to tell you how it is and how it could be, maybe even how it should be when it comes to getting ahead in racing/love.

Drop your questions or problems in the comments below and we’ll get to work on figuring out whether it really is you or Chris Froome leading Sky for the Tour…

It takes two – The Right Dessert

We’re back again and ready to dish out the sweetest love/relationship/racing advice you’ve ever heard! (Or possibly not – I’m not a professional at this stuff). Anyway, the oracular Heather Nielson and I are here to answer your questions in simple language that we can all understand. As ever, if you need advice in how to perfect your experience of love then leave us a comment below.

Anyway let’s get on with it. Here’s the latest relationship-saving advice to help you win at love.

Jimbo asks:
I have been married for over 10 years to a smart and beautiful woman who i adore. She is loving and patient, she is a wonderful mother to our children, and I love her deeply. We are very happy. Here is my question: Recently I bought a new cross frame. What brand of wheels should I run on it, and should I go tubeless? If so which brand do you recommend. Also, handlebar tape color?

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It takes two – An Unplanned Touch

Welcome back to another round of romance and race advice! I found a really cool, cheesy, annoying, shitty, accurate, functional romance title generator, so in future all It Takes Two subtitles will be taken from there (until I get lazy or change my mind).

You may remember last time, when superstar Heather Nielson and myself gave spectacular love (and racing!) advice to such mournful souls with myriad racing (and love!) problems.

Now it’s your turn! Are you unlucky in love? Are you lost on the parcours of romance? Do you struggle with positioning in the final sprint of your dates? Are you worried about how often you “solo to victory”?

Well fear not, the best (or worst) advice available on the internet is here for you!

Post your question in the comments below and we’ll let you know exactly how to make sure your strategy unfolds on the sheets and not on the roads (unless roads is your thing, in which case – get permission first). If you’re shy (like Sarah), you can even pretend you’re asking for a friend.

Help us to help you.

It takes two – Love advice/race tactics, what’s the difference?

Hi everyone! You remember last week when we solicited your love questions?

Well, thanks for getting back to us. It turns out you’re all pretty badly fucked up when it comes to love, but that’s really not that surprising. Never fear! Super-pro Heather Nielson and myself are here to set you on the path to romantic bliss, success, estrangement, ruin, desolation, adventures! So settle in and enjoy some of the best love advice you’re likely to read on a cycling blog today.

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It takes two (to make it a race)

Sometimes life can be hard. There are all sorts of complicated decisions that need to be made and we’re mostly operating with imperfect and incomplete information. This is especially true in the fraught and perilous world of personal human relationships. We either don’t think at all or we overthink way too much and invariably we fuck something up. When you get down to it, relationships are a lot like bike racing:

  • Complicated
  • Unfolding quickly
  • Constantly changing
  • Incomplete information
  • Too much thinking
  • No thinking at all
  • Disastrous

If only there were some simple and clear way to understand relationships just like racing bikes!

Well lucky for you, we’ve decided to do something about it. Starting next week we’ll be running a regular “It takes two” relationship advice column, giving you the very best (or possibly worst) relationship advice possible, in language you’ll understand – race tactics! We’ll all learn together as elite US-based cyclist and coach Heather Nielson assists us in making sure you don’t end up faceplanting on the roads of love.

Drop your questions into the comments, or email us at prowomenscycling[at]gmail[dot]com and we’ll pick the best/most desperate ones to answer.

Don’t worry lonely cyclists, your love troubles will soon be over (or just beginning)!