Saturday, May 31, 2008

10 An Open Letter to Velo News : The Journal of Competitive Men

Dear Velo News,

I'm sick of seeing man after man after man across the pages of your commercial "Journal of Competitive Cycling".

Now I'm not what you call a long term reader of your magazine, but wanting to see what all the fuss, gloss and color are about, I picked up two copies from the local supermarket during grocery shopping, over a period of maybe 2-3 weeks.

If you want to know how bad this problem is, here, I inspected two issues from the recent past, Vol 37, no. 7 and 8 dated April 29 and May 13.

In 98 pages of no.7 above, 2 teeny weeny sections on 2 pages were devoted to female pros.

In 110 pages of no. 8 above, one, I repeat, just one page was devoted to women.

Whats worse, it was an ad for Continental tires that featured two of the most ugliest, wicked looking, fattest women I have seen in my entire life. It beats me how they can promote tires!

After seeing that, I had to puke my Cliff Bars out, the only time I have ever thrown up such magnificent food.

If this is some weird ploy to promote chastity among men so that, you know, they can ride more, its not working my friend.

Infact, I even hear that British racer Robert Millar had serious doubts about himself, and even ended up changing his sex because he was unfortunately given a diet of your magazines to read.

Now it is likely that I may have missed some tiny bits of text on women's racing here and there, but where are the pictures?

Where is the women's Ronde Van Vlaanderen, the La Fleche Wallonne? Where's Nicole Cooke and her cute smile? Where's the one about the Vanderkitten Liz Hatch? Did you guys seriously miss the train or are you paranoid about talking to females?

I'm sick of seeing Boonen, Boonen, Boonen. He can go to hell (he did go to hell and win there too, sigh!). My girlfriend tells me he looks like an alien anyway.

And brainwashing us with color and gloss so you can get us to stare at men is not catching on with me, I see enough of them on the local race circuit.

We return home, tired after the races, and want to read something pleasing to the eyes. Instead, there is a testosterone epidemic across your pages and you have conveniently ignored the estrogen.

You may think I drank a little too much coffee today but Rachel's blog has discovered it too. Read : Where's the Women At?

This is no Journal of Competitive Cycling. This is Journal of Competitive Crap. Men's crap.

I'm not asking anyone to make a porn magazine here. At a time when the onus is on the media to promote women's cycling here and elsewhere, the status quo is conveniently preserved.

Thankfully, I won't make the mistake of putting 5 dollars down for your "Journal" anymore. Its too much money. I can buy a whole bar of Hershey's chocolate with that.

Instead, I'll just visit your internet portal.

Its free.

* * *


  1. Good post. I sent this letter to VeloNews not long ago:

    Dear VeloNews,

    I like the new site and have found myself browsing it more and more
    rather than other cycling news sources. However, I have a problem with
    the website: where is the coverage of Tour de l'Aude? U.S. women are
    riding well there, and in the top 10 on GC, but I can't find a scrap
    about it on your site.

    More coverage of women's cycling please!

    Brian Peterson

  2. Skip the website even and go over to Embrocation Magazine ( for better inclusion. Half of the articles in the last one were by or about women and it is done without a hint of self-consciousness. Of course women are included because women ride. Duh.

  3. Anonymous12:12 AM


    You put that better than I ever could have. Thanks.

  4. Anonymous7:33 AM

    Excellent letter! I'm not a cyclist, but am a woman and I appreciate you speaking up.

  5. This article is being discussed in the Velo News forums here.

    There are some decent replies and there are some A-hole replies.

  6. Anonymous2:19 PM

    Good ideas, definitely moving in the right direction. There's too much dick racing and little chick racing.

  7. bike_boy,

    You're right. Though there is an extensive section about rules to follow on the forums, a bunch of proud immature lowlives still lives on. These very idiots block any means of constructive discussions.

  8. Anonymous1:45 PM

    I have been on the forums before. I realized its not the place for me. Most of people you describe are just old bastards who don't ride bikes and think they're the next best thing after lance armstrong. I think its a midlife crisis.

  9. Interesting, I painstakingly emailed VeloNews this post last week.

    No replies yet.

    I doubt we'll ever get one.


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