Author Topic: Female Friendly Audax.  (Read 9466 times)

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #225 on: September 10, 2019, 03:31:57 pm »
I note the regs allow organiser complete control over maximum speed. I’d love to run a, say 20 km/h max event, so people who ride that speed naturally have an advantage.

You can only so that if organising a Brevet Populaire. You can't change the max/min speeds on BRs or BRMs.
You're only as successful as your last 1200...

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #226 on: September 10, 2019, 04:23:44 pm »

In the absence of published distances and times ]the only way to indicate Audax prowess is to add AAA points. The more of those get added, the lower the female representation seems to be. So I'd view AAA points as sexist, as they lead to male-dominated events; 'Willy Wavers', which generate endless 'humble bragging' blogs.

Right, let's abolish AAA points events pronto.   [and abolish any hilly event with published 'climb' data which would approach or breach former AAA qualifications thereby still leading to "willy  waving"] => concentrate all AUK events in East Anglia, Cheshire Plains, &c.  Job done, end of 'willy waving'   
What is the ideal "female representation" btw?   

FifeingEejit

  • Not Small just Far Away at the back
Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #227 on: September 10, 2019, 04:30:59 pm »
I note the regs allow organiser complete control over maximum speed. I’d love to run a, say 20 km/h max event, so people who ride that speed naturally have an advantage.

You can only so that if organising a Brevet Populaire. You can't change the max/min speeds on BRs or BRMs.

So the BRMs with the 25kmh max I rode/assisted on this season were imaginary?

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
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Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #228 on: September 10, 2019, 04:42:11 pm »
The organiser can set a lower maximum speed, for both BRs and BRMs.  They may have to answer a question or two about the choice from their supervising Events Sec, but there's no prohibition.  (As a rider, I'd probably choose to avoid any such event.)
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
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Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #229 on: September 10, 2019, 04:45:16 pm »
Some old guard are happy and successful using ancient gear that has been nurtured over the years.

Equally, some old guard enjoy burning their money on new 'carbon bling' every year.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #230 on: September 10, 2019, 05:51:55 pm »

"Carbon bling" - here used to define a subset of cyclists. To try and be more precise - and there are obviously exceptions.

Carbon bike of "known brand", low spoke count wheels, minimal/no luggage, Rapha, Chapeau etc kit, Look pedals, non-club background. (I think I'm talking about my son here....)


"Carbon Bling" - from the posts above, I'm a bit lost as to why/if this is a negative characteristic ?

as someone who's still quite new to Audax riding (this is only my second year and I've only ridden two 200km this year) who wears a lot of Rapha, has some Look pedals, tries to carry as minimal amount of gear as I can and has saved an awful lot to buy my kit and deeply enjoys riding her "known brand" Carbon aero bike that I saved for this year, should I be aware I'm not really welcome on the rides by some ?

It was never intended to be derogatory, although other people must use it in that sense. There is nothing wrong with getting the best bike and kit gou can to optimise your riding. I used it as shorthand to describe a subgroup of audaxers, the only inference of ageism presumably because I tried to defuse the situation with a mild joke about my son. I also wear Rapha from time to time although I am not a fan of Look pedals for audaxing as I find them extremely awkward off the bike.
Reine de la Fauche


quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #231 on: September 10, 2019, 06:27:09 pm »

In the absence of published distances and times ]the only way to indicate Audax prowess is to add AAA points. The more of those get added, the lower the female representation seems to be. So I'd view AAA points as sexist, as they lead to male-dominated events; 'Willy Wavers', which generate endless 'humble bragging' blogs.

Right, let's abolish AAA points events pronto.   [and abolish any hilly event with published 'climb' data which would approach or breach former AAA qualifications thereby still leading to "willy  waving"] => concentrate all AUK events in East Anglia, Cheshire Plains, &c.  Job done, end of 'willy waving'   
What is the ideal "female representation" btw?

Well that's an overreaction to a perfectly valid point... I don't believe that ESL is saying abolish the AAA scheme. But I do think they are right that climbing for climbings sake can put some people off. I think there is also a certain amount of willy waving over a quest for AAA points.

As someone who has only ever achieved 1.75 AAA points, and then only by accident, and on a ride that did not advertise itself as having any. I find climbing hard. I'm very much not a climber, I'm fat, I'm not very fit, and I'm on a relatively heavy bike. On a 200 with 2500m of climbing, I finished in 13:26. I wasn't sure I was going to make it, and took a very Amsterdam approach to the red lights on the final couple of km through town to make it to the arrivee in time. I would bring this back to the issue I've ranted about *At LENGTH* wrt to the default gearing of stock bikes just being too high for those who do not have a high power output by default, which effects women more than it does men. Hopefully the new Shimano GRX groupset will help this, tho I fear that it's yet another not quite compatible system, and as such may not have the uptake we'd hope for.

On the above mentioned 200. 38 People were homologated. 37 men. and Me. I can't say if the climbing put the other women off, or if it was the 34°C heat, or the July timing, or that it started in the back end of beyond (Heerlen). But by the same token, I was the only woman on the 300km ride from Groningen on the 17th of August. 13 men, and me. Was this because the weather forecast sucked? was it cos it was long? was it because Groningen is in the back end of beyond?

But if we then look at other events, in this randonneuring year, two events have had 8 women homologate. One was in November last year, from Bergen op Zoom. This was a 200km ride into Zeeland, 95km of stonking tailwind, and 110km of slogging into a 30+kph headwind. But it was really easy to get to from Belgium. Of the 8 women to homologate, one is a member of RNL (Me), 3 are down as Belgian individuals, and the rest are Dutch individuals. The second event with the most women was from Zwolle, in February. This included 1000m of climb in the first 100km, along with 80kph headwinds. Then a cross/tail wind combo on the return leg. Two members of RNL homologated, two are "individual allemand" and the rest are individual Nederland.

So what can we establish from this lot? Well I used to think that correlation implied causation, then I studied stats, and now I don't. Which makes it really hard to draw any strong conclusions from this limited dataset. The 2 hilliest 200's of the Dutch calendar attracted the smallest turnout from women, and also the equal highest. Of these 2, only one gets AAA points by AUK standards.

What I would say is that RNL does publish finishing times. I'm not sure why AUK doesn't.

As a final point of anecdata, I know of at least one woman who this year not only completed an AAA SR series, but did so on fixed, and then went on to complete PBP fixed...

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #232 on: September 10, 2019, 07:58:36 pm »

In the absence of published distances and times ]the only way to indicate Audax prowess is to add AAA points. The more of those get added, the lower the female representation seems to be. So I'd view AAA points as sexist, as they lead to male-dominated events; 'Willy Wavers', which generate endless 'humble bragging' blogs.

Right, let's abolish AAA points events pronto.   [and abolish any hilly event with published 'climb' data which would approach or breach former AAA qualifications thereby still leading to "willy  waving"] => concentrate all AUK events in East Anglia, Cheshire Plains, &c.  Job done, end of 'willy waving'   
What is the ideal "female representation" btw?

I do wonder why there are three A's in AAA, as it just means 'Avoid' in our household. Long ago there was a nice end of season ride called the Fleet Moss. It ran out of Longridge and was reasonably hilly. I used to do it, as did my partner Heather, and a club mate in his late 80s. It got quite a reputation, as local clubs did it as a season finale. A well-known couple of riders from the South came up, and declared that it was over-rated. That led to a bit of AAA inflation, and it rose to 3.75 points. I could still do it, but not Heather, and not Old Jack.

The Fleet Moss moved around a bit, ending up as a Summer ride, run by Southport, rather than Ribble Valley. I checked the 2017 results, and some women from Liverpool Braveheart did it, including Ede Harrison. I suspect they're younger than the average, so that's a double win in some ways. The ride was cancelled in 2018, and I can find no record for 2019. It did tend to suppress other rides, which were easier, and now the main 200s in Lancashire are Andy Corless's.

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #233 on: September 10, 2019, 09:21:35 pm »
Quote
What I would say is that RNL does publish finishing times. I'm not sure why AUK doesn't.

I think this is an insurance thing.

If times are not published, accusations of 'racing' FAIL.

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #234 on: September 10, 2019, 09:25:26 pm »
Quote
What I would say is that RNL does publish finishing times. I'm not sure why AUK doesn't.

I think this is an insurance thing.

If times are not published, accusations of 'racing' FAIL.

Largely irrelevant nowadays, I think, but the tradition holds.

FifeingEejit

  • Not Small just Far Away at the back
Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #235 on: September 10, 2019, 10:14:16 pm »
Thought it was because finish times are testament with competition, and competition is prohibited for all vehicle classes under the Road Traffic Act unless organized through the rules of the appropriate governing body, of which the Cyclists Union is the only one for class 7.

Or a variation of the above wording.

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
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Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #236 on: September 10, 2019, 11:36:39 pm »
Finish times.
It's nothing to do with insurance, or with road regulations.

It's like jazz - if you don't get it, I can't explain it.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #237 on: September 11, 2019, 08:37:45 am »
I have a skewed view of Audax. It provided a way of doing the same ride as my partner Heather, without actually riding with her.

Riding with a partner of differing ability requires compromise. One is always going to be waiting for the other, or trying too hard. Riding with strangers also imposes discipline, you have to suck the pain up, rather than moaning about it.

There are two ways of accomodating that difference. Rides of differing length, or rides suitable for a wide ability range. Heather never wanted the second-best option, so would want to do the 'big' ride. That's why we ended up doing Scottish rides. They went through nice terrain, but didn't have gratuitous hills, as there aren't many route choices. If we want gratuitous hills, they are available from our doorstep.

Sometimes I would plan to get back to the HQ in time to sleep enough to be able to drive home. Sometimes I'd  indulge in some photography along the way, sometimes I would just socialise at the control.

All that is very different from a solo participation. You can then choose the most challenging event, to get full value from it. It doesn't matter if the challenging nature of event drives away riders who are marginal in easier events, especially if the challenging nature of the event is widely advertised, generating added kudos.

One paradox is that the events most suitable for a wide ability range are also the ones most suitable for race training. Sustained periods at close to maximum heart rate are best achieved on flat roads. That's especially true for larger riders, as they overheat on climbs. There used to be a number of rides out of Southport that had a good balance of main road riding, with some Lake District hills.

My view of Audax and inclusivity makes less sense South of a line from Preston to Hull. I notice that VC167 had five female finishers at PBP, albeit one lives in Pinner.

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #238 on: September 11, 2019, 01:25:26 pm »
AAA ratings are an indicator for how scenic a ride will be. They don't make an event sexist, because they aren't discriminatory. The events are open to anyone and everyone. People choosing not to do an event because THEY deem it too hard, or not being fit enough, is neither here nor there.

Of the calendar 200s for the next year, 49 have no AAA ratings, compared to 21 with, so there are plenty of options. There are only two ways of making a ride of a set distance more challenging, reducing the time limit or increasing the climbing, and you can't reduce the time limit, so increased climbing it is.



bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #239 on: September 11, 2019, 01:27:19 pm »
Or making it off-road!

I would like to see more gravel/MTB friendly audaxes. They seem to be quite popular in Italy. I would like to organise one of my own once my first brevet is taken care of next year. I bet they'd attract some new types to the sport too.
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
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Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #240 on: September 11, 2019, 01:29:52 pm »
Given the state of the roads around here, we aren't far off that.
Back on topic though, a recent local 100km had a 35/65% female/male split in a field of 200+.

Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #241 on: September 11, 2019, 04:40:44 pm »
AAA ratings are an indicator for how scenic a ride will be. They don't make an event sexist, because they aren't discriminatory. The events are open to anyone and everyone. People choosing not to do an event because THEY deem it too hard, or not being fit enough, is neither here nor there.

Of the calendar 200s for the next year, 49 have no AAA ratings, compared to 21 with, so there are plenty of options. There are only two ways of making a ride of a set distance more challenging, reducing the time limit or increasing the climbing, and you can't reduce the time limit, so increased climbing it is.

If you read my answer a while back, it was in reply to the idea that increased climbing makes rides more difficult for women to complete was sexist. My point was that TT statistics tend to indicate that women are about 15% slower in unpaced riding. So any attempt to make rides more challenging by increasing the amount of climbing will impact on women more. The same is true of larger men.

The idea of AAAs as sexist is also a bit of a reference to the 'Overly Woke' sketch. Where water might be racist.


Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #242 on: September 11, 2019, 08:36:54 pm »
I'm aiming to organise a ride next year and to recruit volunteers who will act as captains for underrepresented-in-audax demographics who would like to be in a larger group - even just to know that 'people like them' will be there. I expect many might split off under their own initiative. I've seen nothing in the organiser's rulebook and the audax rulebook to preclude this.

I think if you are talking about this as a marketing or communications exercise, then recruiting a bunch of 'influencers' to reach your target demographics is entirely sensible and a well worn path.

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #243 on: September 12, 2019, 06:05:07 pm »
Question for QG: When someone, in a cycling context, says something that offends you, such as asking if this is your first randonnee or wondering where your boyfriend is, do you explain to them why this offends you? And if you do, how do they react? The reason I ask is that these sound like the kind of things which are unintentionally, and probably largely unawarely, patronising through clumsiness, rather than deliberate put downs. In fact they sound rather like the way some people behave when they are keen to engage and be friendly but are too nerdy to do so with any feeling for how they will be received.
sideways bounding monkey lounging under fruit tree

monaxle

  • Enough is plenty. Good enough will do.
    • monaxle: bike behind!
Re: Female Friendly Audax.
« Reply #244 on: September 12, 2019, 09:23:02 pm »
AAA ratings are an indicator for how scenic a ride will be. They don't make an event sexist, because they aren't discriminatory. The events are open to anyone and everyone. People choosing not to do an event because THEY deem it too hard, or not being fit enough, is neither here nor there.

Of the calendar 200s for the next year, 49 have no AAA ratings, compared to 21 with, so there are plenty of options. There are only two ways of making a ride of a set distance more challenging, reducing the time limit or increasing the climbing, and you can't reduce the time limit, so increased climbing it is.

If you read my answer a while back, it was in reply to the idea that increased climbing makes rides more difficult for women to complete was sexist. My point was that TT statistics tend to indicate that women are about 15% slower in unpaced riding. So any attempt to make rides more challenging by increasing the amount of climbing will impact on women more. The same is true of larger men.

The idea of AAAs as sexist is also a bit of a reference to the 'Overly Woke' sketch. Where water might be racist.



Top *fellow human* for posting that clip. Had me laughing in a totally inclusive way.
monaxle: bike behind!