A number of prominent figures in the women’s peloton are calling for better consideration of women’s interests in the UCI’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Marianne Vos, Amanda Spratt and Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio are among the riders that signed an open letter to the UCI from The Cyclists’ Alliance (TCA), Friday. The address from the union representing women’s rights confronted the UCI’s statement outlining provisional plans for the re-scheduled 2020 season.
Although the governing body’s roadmap included revised Tour de France dates and laid plans for the Vuelta a Espana, Giro d’Italia and five monuments, there was only passing mention of the Women’s WorldTour. Instead, UCI stated that their plans for women’s racing would be confirmed “on May 15, 2020 at the latest.”
The letter from the TCA outlined concern “that we do not have adequate representation from the women’s side in the ongoing discussions concerning this pandemic and the challenges it brings.”
“We note the recent statement issued by the UCI [on 15 April] did not include the details of the approach for the women’s race calendar, nor did it detail who was being consulted in order to make these decisions. This indicates discussions are still ongoing.”
The union had been quick to react to the UCI’s statement last Wednesday, criticizing a lack of representation for women’s cycling in a post on Twitter.
We have repeatedly approached the @UCI_cycling to be apart of the discussions concerning the 2020 UCI women's race calendar. This announcement comes without the rider's interests or voices represented. We continue to press the UCI that we want to be involved in future plannings. https://t.co/ExDXc6fCfD
— The Cyclists' Alliance (@Cyclists_All) April 16, 2020
The TCA’s open letter, posted Friday, was signed by the eight members of the body’s rider council, which also includes Ellen van Dijk, Audrey Cordon-Ragot, Christine Majerus, Leah Kirchmann and mountain biker Ariane Luthi.
The letter closed out by calling for the UCI to better engage with the TCA to “formulate strategies to sustain and improve women’s cycling… We want to be represented by an organization that we trust, is committed, understands us and has been of enormous value to many of us so far. Therefore, we call for recognition of the women’s peloton by engaging with the TCA.”