Women’s cycling survey part 6 – what do people like best about women’s cycling? The mega-table

Yesterday I looked at the top 10 things people like best about professional women’s cycling – this was taken from the women’s cycling audience survey Dan and I ran in September, and was analysis of the question: “What do you like best about women’s cycling”.  This question was asked as an open text box, and we had 1,118 answers to this.  It’s taken me a long time to anslyse this, and you’ll see this from the mega table of all the answers that more than one person gave (I’ve included the single answers where it related to people’s favourite disciplines) (and again, this has my subjective grouping into categories, but I took advice when I wasn’t sure).  But this is the kind of fabulous answer we got to this question:


The elite women’s peloton’s uptake & use of social media and direct, personal blogging and (generally unmediated, PR-free) sharing of their actual thoughts and criticisms (e.g. of UCI / race mismanagement, joy of winning, anger at losing…)

I don’t think I could get that from other sports that mildly interest me (football, rugby)

2nd BEST

I also like the variety of the races / racing and the complexity of it being both an individual and a team sport. And the dynamism (/chaos) of all that can happen during a race that influences escapes, breaks and chases!


Their passion for the sport (they’re CLEARLY not in it for the money). I don’t know if I think differently of pro-men or how/whether I would view the women’s peloton differently if they were all making millions.

So, onwards to the table….

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Women’s cycling survey part 4 – what do people like about cycling in general?

In part 3 of the women’s cycling survey analysis, I included the chart for the answers to the question “What is it you like about cycling?”.  The chart was from the options we gave them, but there was also an open response box, which 550 answered, and in part 3 I talked about the different riders, kinds of riders and teams people named in that.  But there were lots of other reasons, too.

What else do people like about following cycling?

These are things more than 1 person said:

Tactics/strategy 22
Following rider development over the years/spotting up-and-coming riders 19
The accessibility of riders and races 10
Complexity of the racing 8
Bravery 7
Tour de France 7
Learning about/seeing other countries 6
The aesthetics – the beauty, colour, the machinery, the style 6
The specific atmosphere of races 6
Aggression 5
Chatting about it on twitter/social aspect 5
Drama 5
Unpredictability 5
Downhill MTB 4
Riders who’ve retired! 4
Virtual DS games 4
The history behind the sport 4
Classics 3
The back stories of the female cyclists and the road they took to cycling 3
Team work and selflessness 3
Gravity enduro 2
Paris-Roubaix 2
The length of time a race takes 2

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Women’s cycling audience survey part 3 – which cyclists do people like, and why?

In part 1 of the women’s cycling survey analysis, we looked at who replied, and in part 2, what cycling they follow – but this question is where it gets much more complicated – asking the respondents what it is they like about cycling in general.  I’m going to break this section into two posts, starting with which riders, or kinds of riders, people like, but this is the question we asked:

What is it that you like about cycling? (please tick all that apply)

What is it that you like about cycling

1,632 people replied, and as they could tick different options, the percentages are of the respondents, rather than the total number of ticks overall.

Now, bear in mind we wrote this question when we thought we’d get a couple of hundred responses at most…. If I was doing this again, I’d be all about the drop-down menus and auto-counting, because while I adore reading the answers, it has taken me a little bit of time to get through the answers, because 550 people left comments.  And they’re awesome comments, I love them.  I’ve picked some at random:

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Women’s cycling audience survey part 2 – what do people follow, and why do they like it?

This is part 2 of a series of mini-posts looking at the women’s cycling audience survey Dan and I ran back in September.  Part 1 was about what we did and why, and who responded – this post will look at what cycling people watch.

Now, I said in part 1, we ran this over Road Worlds, so the responses will skew to road – we probably would have got different responses if we were running it over MTB or CX World Championships.  But even so, there wasn’t as much pro road dominance as I’d thought we’d get.

What do people follow?

What do they followThis question was answered by 1,632 people.  It was asked in a checklist, and people could pick as many varieties as they wanted – so the percentages are of the number of respondents.  The list going down to cyclocross was included in a drop-down menu, and then there was an “other” box where people added other things.  From cadet to paracycling are answers where more than one people mentioned it in the “other” box.  The other types of cycling people mentioned:

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The women’s cycling audience survey – what we did and who responded

In September, Dan and I ran a women’s cycling audience survey.  We did it because, like so many other things we’ve done together, we wanted to see what would happen, and we thought it would be fun.  We had a podcast conversation about the whys and hows, and things that surprised us from the results, but we also wanted to put up a series of posts about what we found.  These will be short posts about different aspects that caught our attention, and at the end I’ll put links into one post, for ease of reference.  But it’s probably a good idea to start with what we did, why, and who responded.

Our methodology

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Podcast 2014 Episode 55 – Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics

Podcast logoIt’s time to talk cycling survey results! So that’s what we do this week, breaking down the basic demographics of our respondents and highlighting the sections that we each found most interesting. There’s lies, damned lies and most importantly, statistics (and of course plenty of jokes and swearing to go along with it)! (55:14 MIN / 53.03 MB)

To stream the most statistically valid podcast available on this page, click here.


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We were talking about the women’s cycling audience survey we ran in September – and we’ll be starting a series of mini-posts talking about things we’re interested in over the next month or so – and then an overarching collation post at the end.

Huge thanks, as ever, to everyone who shared the survey, completed it themselves, posted about it, and everything else.  We really appreciate your support – and if you have any specific questions about it, please do let us know, on twitter (Sarah is @_pigeons_, Dan is @danwofficial), in the comments, or at prowomenscycling [at] gmail [dot] come

The World’s Best Women’s Cycling Survey (guaranteed to make you sexier*!)

**We’ve now closed the survey – thankyou so much to everyone who completed and shared it!**

Hey team! You know that Sarah and I are big fans of all things women’s cycling and we’re always interested in new and interesting ways to improve the sport from any perspective. We’re working on a couple of (sorta secret, sorta early-days) projects and thought now would be a perfect time to get more info from you.

On that note, welcome to our first ever World’s Best Women’s Cycling Survey (guaranteed to make you sexier*!).

It’s not too long and should take under 15 minutes to complete. If you can spare the time we’d love your input and help in better understanding what you watch and read, and what you want to see more of. Thanks in advance, you’re looking pretty sexy already**.

*not an actual guarantee – no indication of to whom, or what, you may be sexier

**compared to a theoretical baseline of not at all sexy