transam day2 woman
  • Cycling Fan

    I don’t understand this constant need to compare genders within the context of which is ‘better’ – it’s a common theme on Ella and to be honest it’s really off putting. Surely a less v’s based narrative will lead to us having a more inclusive sport – playing one off against another seems a petulant approach and hints at an inferiority complex. Can we not just celebrate differences without this need to make product a appear better than product b ?

    • Mel

      Hey Cycling Fan,
      Are you referring to the one line comment of the TransAm to the Tour de France?

      I dont see how that there is comparing genders at all. This article is purely written to inform some of the readers out there that an epic race is happening across America at the moment. Whether you are male or female, signing up and training for this race is a big enough challenge let alone actually throwing a leg over your bike and doing it. The TDF is an easy race to compare to because EVERYONE knows how massive it is, its not being used to compare which one is better.
      And not to get off topic about the Trans Am Race, but my opinion is the Ella website is a fantastic place for ladies to come together and read some great race highlights, gear reviews, funny articles and some helpful tips of becoming a better rider. Its only other women that can give that specific knowledge and advice. Men can have an input but they dont know what its like to have your lady bits compressed against a saddle for hours on end, just like we can tell them the same.

      Oh and GO SARAH!!!!

      • Cycling Fan

        Hey Mel,
        I’m more referring to pretty much every time a direct comparison is made to mens racing, so the content thats unique to women e.g. lady bits compressed etc is not really what I am talking about – the site does a great job with that stuff. I was speaking in very much general terms across the content as a whole there is a, possibly subconscious, narrative of comparing both with a ‘A is better than B outcome.’

        eg The early pace set by a couple of the women has made it clear that the men vying for the top overall positions would be wise to keep a close watch on the female competitors. <- if there is an top overall position why not just say "x and y are currently in z overall, and j and k better keep a close watch on them – as in why define by gender? why not by person? the overall category is clearly gender neutral so why frame by gender?

        With regards to the TransAm being compared to TDF – one has a longer distance and the other is raced at a faster speed – both speed and distance are variables in determining how hard something is so it's not really an apples v apples comparison but this again is a minor point in an overall concern with a worrying (for ella) that this is a divisive narrative and is counterproductive to a more inclusive sport (both genders together) with individual differences – is this not a better strategy? i.e lets not compete against other as part of the same sport

        • Simone Giuliani

          Hi Cycling Fan, I understand your point on the TDF and Trans Am. It is not an apples for apples comparison but with its widespread recognition the hope was that the comparative distances would help bring some perspective to just what a monumental effort the Trans Am is, to as wide as possible an audience. It wasn’t intended as a divisive, one is better than the other point, with the “male only” added to highlight that it was not a common opportunity in the top level of the sport for women to race this style of multi-week event. However, your comment has highlighted that some will interpret this differently so I will remove those two words. On why define by gender – there is a widespread differentiation between men and women in sport and I don’t think we can ignore that.


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