23 June 2017
Women’s Sports Week is the campaign pioneered by Women in Sport that aims to encourage more women to take up sport. And this year (19th-25th June) has been busier than ever for Brandnation’s Sports PR Team.
One topic of discussion that is particularly pertinent in 2017 is the gender gap in professional sport and in particular Cycling, where it’s clear that there still remains a gender gap, not only in pay amongst professional teams, but also in uptake of the sport. Amongst those using cycling as a means of transport to work for example, women are outnumbered 2:1 by men.
Brandnation has been working with client Wiggle (link), the number one international cycle and tri-sports retailer, to activate its sponsorship of the Wiggle High5 professional women’s cycling team, using key races and events within the calendar over the past four months to bring women’s cycling to the national agenda. Working with Wiggle Brandnation has been seeking to actively use their sponsorship of the Wiggle High5 professional cycling team to help redress the gender gap within cycling.
At the team’s training camp, the London Evening Standard joined the girls for a training ride. Speaking to them ahead of the Women’s tour coming to London for the first time, British junior world road race champion Lucy Garner, 22, said the move to host the Tour in London was “special” and “shows the UK is leading the way in women’s cycling”.
In a bid to inspire a new generation of cyclists, the Wiggle High5 team visited St Cuthbert’s Primary School ahead of the women’s Tour de Yorkshire. The team led an assembly, gave a skills session and even learned something themselves, after a lesson in Yorkshire dialect by the children! The Tour de Yorkshire is a key event on the women’s calendar as its one of the only to have equal prize money with the men.
In the absence of a female equivalent of the Tour de France, La Course is a one day race hosted by the same organisers taking place on the same day the men compete. The course for 2017 has been a source of controversy as at 67kms it is extremely short. Emma Johansson rode the route with a journalist from The i specifically to discuss the gender gap between the men’s and women’s pelotons.
Ahead of the Women’s Tour coming to London, Wiggle and Brandnation wanted to address the shortfall in the number of women cycling – especially in London. We invited two time World Junior Road Race Champion, Lucy Garner (one of the Wiggle High5 team) down to take a look at what it’s really like to ride on London’s streets.
Lucy rode on her 'Boris Bike' with a select group of journalists on a route beginning in London's Hyde Park and ending near Brandnation’s offices in London Bridge, taking in a mixture of some of London's best cycle routes, like the segregated East-West Cycle Superhighway down London’s Embankment, and also some areas known to be a challenge like Bank junction.
Plenty more to do but we’re on it!