Scottish cycling event inspires increasing numbers of women to take on 81-mile sportive
Insights from Olympic gold medallist, Nicole Cooke MBE, and Scottish Cycling’s head of development, Vicky Strange
FOLLOWING trends of increased female participation in sport across the UK, the Marie Curie Cancer Care Etape Caledonia is pleased to confirm it is experiencing substantial female participation growth in 2015.
With a six per cent increase in the last three years alone, 20 per cent of the riders taking part in the upcoming event are female.
Says a spokesperson: ‘The closed road sportive, taking place on 10th May 2015, is historically a male dominated event, but the entry data reports a shift in its gender demographic from roughly one in seven females to males in 2013, to one in five in 2015.
“This increase is reflected in statistics from Scottish Cycling who report the number of females taking part in cycling events throughout Scotland has increased an incredible 35 per cent from 2013-2014.:
Vicky Strange, Scottish Cycling’s head of development, said: “I am delighted to hear that the Marie Curie Cancer Care Etape Caledonia has seen an increase in female participants, year-on-year; this echoes what we have seen right across the country.
“The increase in women participating in cycling events confirms women’s opportunities to get involved with cycling are really going from strength to strength in Scotland.”
Nicole Cooke MBE, Olympic gold medallist and World Road Race champion, commented: “Sportives like the Marie Curie Cancer Care Etape Caledonia offer a challenge to all cyclists, whether it’s to complete a challenging course, enjoy the spectacular countryside, a chance to ride with friends or to better your time.
“There is always something for everyone and is also the perfect opportunity to catch up with friends, meet new people and share in the accomplishments of all the participants after the event.
“Recently, the number of cyclists in Britain, both male and female has increased significantly and new cycling clubs are popping up all over Britain. There are certainly a lot more riders on the roads compared to ten years ago and the cycling industry reflects this with companies offering women’s specific clothing, bikes and components, and a number of exciting new companies that cater solely for the female cyclist.”
James Robinson, managing director of event organisers, IMG Challenger World, added: “The Marie Curie Cancer Care Etape Caledonia is an extremely popular event, with increased interest every year from both male and female participants. It’s fantastic to see that we will have an even stronger field of female cyclists riding with us in 2015 and that the success of the event is contributing to increased female participation across Scotland as a whole.”
Taking place on 10th May 2015, the Marie Curie Cancer Care Etape Caledonia is regarded as a ‘bucket list’ event within the cycling community.
Credited as the first closed road cycling sportive to be introduced to the UK, back in 2007, the event has gone from strength to strength – selling out in less than three days and attracting 5,000 cyclists to stunning Perthshire each year.
General entries have sold out, but a limited amount of Charity Pledge Places are still available to raise funds for Marie Curie, prospective participants should visit www.etapecaledonia.co.uk to book their entries now.
For further info, interviews and additional photography please contact IMG Press Team:
Becky Bowler, IMG Consulting
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