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July 21, 2017
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  • Sean

    Oleg is a joke, he is bad for the sport on so many levels.

    • 42x16ss

      He fluctuates IMO. He says and does some terrible things (like this) but he also raises some very good points as well, like rider safety and his views on the pro cycling business model.

      • zeppeliner

        When he twitters comments in all directions at the speed of a machine gun, it would almost be impossible to avoid that he is also spot on sometimes… I still find it hard to take him serious.

      • Chris Garrison

        One thing does not excuse the other. There are plenty of people who are loud voices for cycling safety without being misogynistic wazzocks. And after the publication of the CIRC report, women in the pro peloton face way more difficulties than pro men who have to navigate technical courses.

      • CoDrvr

        Yeah, and Hitler was a decent painter.

    • Joe Crawford

      Agreed, he is so inflammatory, aside from the money, I have no idea why anyone would ride for him.

      • Paul Kersey

        Did your wife make you write that? Oleg’s Russian, he doesn’t have to give a sh*t about PC “empowerment” cr@p.

  • Martin Young

    Well said!

  • geoff

    Very well said. Exactly what dinosaurs like him need to hear. Sadly I don’t think they listen.

  • Simon

    The “Donald Trump” of cycling.

    • Larry @CycleItalia

      Exactly. Remember when The Donald had his own race? Of course it was named Tour de Trump!!!

  • jules

    he’s just an attention seeking monkey. his team will implode as he increasingly takes over operational roles and I guess we can expect more of this stuff as he acts out

  • John

    Well said! I had to the absolute pleasure of riding with four girls in a mixed Team doing a charity event over 800 kms. They put up with that attitude and innuendo all the way back. Didn’t stop them! Wish I rode like a girl.

  • MattF

    I don’t think Tinkov is supporting the men’s side of the sport, he is merely indulging a personal passion and using it as an outlet for promotion of his epynonomous company. He seems to think that this ‘investment’ will buy influence and friends. However, he is slowly but surely alienating everybody – his own staff and riders, other team owners, the UCI etc. Don’t give him any oxygen and it won’t be long before he packs his bags and moves on.

    • Michele

      Once Alberto retires, and Sagan moves on; the team, and Oleg, has no reason to exist in cycling.

      • We saw it once before, and I’m confident that it will all end in tears again.

        • Michele

          Yep, spot on Wade. Its a matter of when not if.

  • Superpilot

    I also wish I could #ridelikeagirl

  • bob

    what is kiskifo?

  • Michele

    Nicely written …

    The thing is; the guy has actually toned down his tweets from 12-18 months ago. He was so bad, everyone assumed his twitter account wasn’t actually run by him. The example above [from 2013]; is actually above if one of his more mild tweets.

    If Oleg was involved in any other sport – perhaps aside from F1 – he would’ve been kicked out of his sport.
    But that’s the ‘beauty’ of cycling. It’s so desperate for sponsors it will allow anyone into it’s fold. Oh, for the sport to be strong enough to not need the likes of Tinkov.

    But then as he so rightfully highlights; if the governing body can’t be be seen to be vocal and proactive in getting support vehicles from crashing into riders, what hope is there for it to kick out individuals who are actually damaging the brand of cycling.

  • scottmanning

    Hear Hear!

  • Alexander Yatsina

    He is just rich, arrogant, self-centered individual! never have and never will respect him!

  • Michele
  • Wayne

    Perfecty stated. Needed to be said.

  • Kendb001

    Both are clowns. The Russian and the fake doping, fake Brit. I bet both clowns will work together after Alberto’s retirement.

    • Connor

      Begone foul little troll…equating Froome (who has done nothing save the crime of being successful and hardworking BASED ON THE EVIDENCE TO DATE) with Tinkoff does you no credit at all. Or are you yet another ‘inside scooper’ who thinks their mastery of second hand data and human physiology has ‘proven beyond all doubt’ that Froome is a doper??

  • Jessy Vee

    I can’t stand this man. But for every Oleg in the world, there are many more wonderful, supporting men in the sport of cycling… So we’ve got that going for us. Nicely written, AMR&JB!

  • guest

    “Let’s be honest” he said. “I descended like bit of a girl really after the crash.”
    Sir Bradley Wiggins

  • Nick Orloff

    I rode with a bunch of girls this week … and watched them all disappear up the road – I can only dream about riding that well. It ain’t the plumbing that determines the ability.

    • jules

      very eloquently put :)

  • Rocket

    As I have said in the past he should go buy a soccer team and get the hell out of cycling, engage eyes then brain and lastly voice bit like mirror, signal manoeuver when driving.

    • Billy

      Cycling is struggling to exist and you want to morally vet the sources of funding? Beware looking under stones lest you find creepy crawlies!

      • Amanda

        Have you considered that maybe cycling is struggling to exist not because of moral vetting but because of the lack thereof? Look at soccer — similar ‘leaders’ and ‘funders’ and it struggles along. Perhaps the funding issue stems from women who don’t want to write checks to support teams that are run by men like this, or companies who do not wish to be associated with an industry that tolerates the objectification and hatred of half the world’s population?


        • Billy

          Of all the possible reasons this is certainly one of the most outlandish and unlikely. Football (what you call “soccer”) does not struggle along at all. In fact, its never been better off. And where are all these women in charge of businesses who do not want to support “men like this”? Point out to me even one who has openly said such a thing. In short, this scenario is a fantasy of your own making.

  • Spider

    He’s an embarrassment to us all – if the sport was in a better position financially (and I think it will only get worse) surely they’d remove him for bringing us into disrepute – that Obama/monkey comparison comment a few weeks back….just ridiculous.

    • Billy

      Who would remove him? There is no “fit and proper persons” test in cycling. If you buy a licence you own a team. And besides, there are very probably much worse characters in cycling than big mouth Oleg. I can certainly think of a few owners who shall remain nameless. Go down that route and there might not be any cycling left.

  • Billy

    The thing about Oleg is he is literally a man you cannot hurt. He spews out insensitive or vile comments and just sits back and laughs at the responses. If you “call him out” he laughs at that even more. I know this because I have replied to some of his nonsense before and he has shot back at me personally – sometimes in Russian which i don’t understand. This is a man who could easily fund the whole sport of women’s cycling all by himself if he wanted to. Let’s say he did want to. Would women’s cycling enthusiasts turn him down or eagerly gobble up his cash?

    But here’s the thing. Oleg doesn’t need your respect, your approval or your agreement for anything he does. He has hundreds of millions of whatever currency you use. This buys him the right to be vile from an ivory tower without having to worry about the responses. What he does want is your attention and if you give it to him he wins. It is certain that after he is bored with cycling once more – probably when Contador retires – he will leave cycling again. Sometimes you just have to pick your targets and realise when you can’t win. There will always be muppets in the world and you can’t defeat every one of them.

  • Adrian

    I am a little tired of this kind of post. Cant we respect that people are from different generations, talk in ways and use expressions that 5, 10 or 20 years ago wouldn’t have raised a heartbeat. It might not be politically correct for 2015 and indeed they may hold some tradtional views about gender roles in our society. I know my Dad does and he is not a bad, evil or vile person. I am tired of the moralising righteous judgement and crucifying a person as racist, homophobic, sexist or misogynist. BTW Froome was an embarrassment to all professional riders.

    • Michele

      So you want us to respect Oleg and the fact he’s from a different ‘generation’? Interesting.

      Have you read Oleg’s twitter feed? If so, you might see he shows very little respect to others.

      I’m pretty sure it wasn’t acceptable to brand women as sluts 5, 10 or 20 years ago.

      I also assume you are a professional rider, and hence have grounds to suggest he’s an embarrassment to all in the peloton. He might be an embarrassment to you; but I don’t really think you can speak on behalf of the rest of the pro peloton.

    • Eleanor

      Tell me how it is an embarrassment to ride an incredibly difficult Vuelta stage with a broken foot and still come in only 8 minutes down? Could you do better?

      • Adrian

        He fractured his navicular which is just about the smallest bone in your body. I played a season of A grade tennis with a fractured navicular. Silly I know but after about 4 months the pain never went and I thought I would get an X-ray.

    • Simone Giuliani

      Adrian, I agree that respect between generations is important but it runs two ways. In this case some inter-generational respect for the new crop of female riders coming in wouldn’t go astray. It hardly seems fair to me that we should sit back and allow my daughter and other girls like her that are trying to find a place in cycling feel belittled and unwelcome because of the negative use of the term ride like a girl.

      • Adrian

        Perhaps u should let them know that life isn’t fair and was never meant to. And that people hold all sorts views about all sorts of things and that is their right in a free country and inevitably somebody somewhere might be offended. She should focus on the views and opinions of people she knows and respects.

    • tyler b

      This post is pretty much the definition of privilege.

      None of people’s vile sexist, homophobic, or racist views are directed at you, so you want everyone else to be OK with it. Wow.

      • david__g

        Well said, Tyler

      • Adrian

        And your would like the control people so they all think, speak, act, behave and have values like you; and if they don’t throw them in jail I suppose. Good on you Starlin.

  • In the UK, there is a female specific insurance company, (Sheila’s Wheels) which uses the tag line “drive like a girl”. They fell foul of European discriminatory laws, as they offered insurance, solely to women, declining any man, a quote. So they follow their original direction and simply cover people, who “drive like a girl”.

    By their own conduct, and marketing, it’s derogatory to ladies, and in some quarters, men.
    It’s run by a female board of directors.

    I tend to agree with Adrian’s comments below.
    I’m neither offended or bothered, by their marketing.
    At some point, all this mock outrage at others offensive comments, becomes tiring – whichever gender, is whining.

    Cycling is a hard sport, physically, and moreso, mentally. It’s always had outspoken characters, but I can tell you now, the problem is not Oleg. It’s the other persons in power, whom cause the damage, by their inactions, and silent indifference.

    • tyler b

      It’s not derogatory to women as long as they cover awesome drivers who drive like badasses. You know, the ones who drive like girls. Not the ones who drive with their little heads controlling their gas pedal foot.

      And, like Adrian, you only agree with his comments because YOU don’t have to be at the receiving end of derogatory, nasty, sexist, racist, belittling comments. GTFO.

      • Pull your head in, you presumptuous 5 buck twat.
        Whilst I agree with some of Adrian’s post, his final comment, I disagree with that, but each to your own & all that.

  • skeanthu

    ??? ???? ?????? ??????? ?????? ????????? ????????? ???????????? ??? ? ??? ?? ????? ???? ???????

  • Derek Maher

    Please ladies don’t be so defensive over a throw away twitter remark.Oleg enjoys winding up the cycling world and poking fun at the institution and its sometimes pompous PC attitudes.
    Just concentrate on spreading the word about womens cycling and getting backers on board for more teams and bigger and better races and events.
    Some day even Oleg may see the light and decide to invest.

    • Mike

      Tinkov may or may not be a prat, I don’t know. But there is an indisputable nugget of truth in his assertion that women can’t ride like the men. Just as any man in the tennis top 200 would beat Serena Williams so the best women riders wouldn’t stand a chance against most male semi-pros. It’s just how it is, no sense pussyfooting around the issue.
      So for Tinkov to say an injured man is riding like a woman is uncomplimentary and crude, but quite possibly accurate.

      • Jessi Braverman

        It’s pretty clear that Tinkov didn’t meant that the speed at which Froome was riding was akin to which women race but rather that he was off-the-back and struggling to make it to the finish. Are professional women as fast as professional men in general? No. Does that mean that women should be viewed as inferior versions (injured versions!) of men? Absolutely not. Our point here is not that women are just like men. Our point is that being a woman is nothing less than being a man and that the message sent by using #likeagirl in the way Tinkov used it is meant to belittle and humiliate rather than empower and celebrate.

        • Paul Kersey

          Meh, “empowerment”, celebration, being a woman…You remind me of the women with blue glasses in Dostoyevsky’s ‘The Idiot’. Russian culture – you don’t understand it.

      • Superpilot

        Ah Mike, you’ve missed the point. Your statements regarding the disparities of strength between female and male athletes are correct, this is directly measurable.

        However you and I, and the rest of the world, know that good ol’ Oleg here is using the reference to one gender as a derogatory term to a member of the other gender. This is not Oleg saying ‘Look he is riding weaker’, this is Oleg calling Froome names, in his assumption that using the opposite gender is a slur. It is clear Oleg believes his refernce to ‘girl’ is derogatory to a man. The use of the name of one gender as a nuanced slur on the other, is sexist.

        If he had of said “Froomes power output has clearly dropped below that of a top male cyclist and is more akin to that of a top female cyclist”, he would be referring to your measurable difference in ability in a factually based manner that you wish to imply upon his comment. But we know he is not, he is clearly using ‘girl’ as a slur.

        He is right in that in the free world he can have his opinions, he knows what he likes. Clearly he sees the world, and females in particular, as his plaything. Perhaps, this is how a wide range of men think. But just because people (even if it is a large number) think like that and are able to voice their opinion (free speech), that doesn’t preclude others from having the ability to be offended by his comments or to feel belittled by them..

        • Mike

          Having already said that Tinkov’s comments were “uncomplimentary and crude” it’s unlikely that I missed the point. He could, I suppose, have said that Froome was riding like a weakling but we like our insults to have a certain ring to them, a cadence and rhythm that abide in the memory. Who would have remembered references to the dog’s testes?
          So he uses the term “girl” because it gels nicely with the tone of his sentiment and because it is based in fact. And, as you admit, it is based in fact. I for one hardly ever watch women’s racing because it is so slow. Without the straight-line power they can’t reach the speeds necessary for exciting cornering and it’s all a bit second-rate. But I try not to mention this to my wife.

          • Derek Maher

            Hi Mike,I do think the girls are improving over the last couple of years regarding road speed and finally useing pro team tactics.
            The last world cup road race was a great contest and certainly not slow.Give them a couple more seasons of this type of improvement and I can see their following rocketing in numbers.Plus they should be given bigger and better races to compete in as they gather strength on the sponsorship front.

          • david__g

            You sound like a pretty awful person.

        • tyler b

          When all the men beat all the women, then you’ll have a case in saying that women are “indisputably” inferior athletes. That never happens and in fact women are beating a big chunk of the men on a regular basis these days, and they keep getting better.

      • tyler b

        Ha! Let’s see women get all of the same advantages in sport that men get, then let’s find out who can ride the best. Women get a fraction of the access, training, support, pharmaceutical assistance, and financial assistance that the men do. Of course it’s tough to compete when you are so badly disadvantaged in almost every possible way.

        Right now I bet you yourself couldn’t beat a single female professional rider. Or Serena Williams. Or me, at a lot of the things I’m good at. You just desperately cling to your position as superior because you happen to have been born male, without ever having to actually be superior at anything.

    • Amanda

      Ahhhh… But is it a ‘throw away twitter remark’ when he consistently refers to female cyclists as ‘sluts’ when talking about sponsorship or how ‘long legged prostitutes’ would be better fit for a pro cycling team? I would hardly classify that as a reference to female cycling abilities and instead, classify that as one man’s inferiority complex speaking loud and clear. This man has failed in every area but one (making money) and uses his financial influence to pretend that he’s anything less than a troll and misogynist. Supporting or defending his statement and telling women to not be so defensive is simply reprehensible, but I suppose that’s quite simple to do as a male who finds nothing wrong with the dehumanization and devaluing of an entire gender.

  • Anne-Marije Rook

    After an onslaught of Twitter mentions, here is Tinkov’s response to the letter:

    • Anne-Marije Rook

      and more:

      • Shiffon

        Freedom of speech in Russia??!! Oh, the irony!!

        • Derek Maher

          Russia is a democratic country Shiffon and one can voice opinions.

      • CoDrvr


        Just about the best joke I read in months!

      • lauren o’keefe

        I always find it so interesting that when people say something insulting/appalling/just generally horrible, they all bleat “free speech, free speech!” and get snotty and indignant when they get called out about it. Yes, Mr Tinkov, you have the right to free speech and to say horrible things about Froome but I, in turn, have the right to call you out for being a sexist jerk because… you know… free speech!!

      • Derek Maher

        Got to hand it to you and Jessie you sure hit the jackpot on getting publicity for Ella .

    • Paul Kersey


  • Shiffon

    Once again, an excellent article and a perfect response to Oleg, but I would also love for you to commission a feminist scholar to write an article for you on a) the definition of sexism and active and passive forms of it (as compared to generalisation) b) the definition of feminism and c) why the two are still so important and relevant to today’s women! I just finished reading the article on “Riding with the Boys”, and together with some comments here, cannot believe that some still (still!!!) think that it is inappropriate for women to identify and criticise those who are being blatantly or passively sexist in their remarks or attitudes!! People must have extremely short memories and forget that it was articles similar to this one that ensured not too long ago that women can now vote, work after they are married and have children, divorce without reason, hold a bank account in their own name without “permission”, and so much more (at least in Western countries… :-( )! God forbid, it is why we can ride and race bikes against both women and men.
    Oleg, on the other hand, is the worse example of a sexist person: he has power and a large audience, although I cannot understand why the latter exists. His tweet about watching beach volleyball demonstrates it all too well- it’s fine for women to run around a beach in skimpy outfits because that is pleasing to his eye (hello, objectification!) . But women’s cycling, as opposed to men’s cycling, has no value because, it seems, there simply isn’t enough skin on show for him and probably the usual complaints that it isn’t “interesting” or “fast enough” or “strategic enough” or whatever the stock standard complaints are.
    So thank you again Ella for doing your duty in calling out Oleg’s BS, outdated and sexist attitudes. Froome was riding like a man injured; not a “girl”. If one is truly a feminist, believing in equality for women without the “but…”, then we all have a duty to read and share articles like these in order to further challenge and change the ever existent disadvantage women that still face explicitly and passively in society.

    • Paul Kersey

      How come feminists are always ugly? Being a feminist makes you un-sexy inside too. Have fun not getting laid.

      • Shiffon

        That old chestnut?? Ha!
        It appears that you can read and write reasonably well Paul, so if you’re going to join the big kids table, you had better use those skills to actually formulate analysis, arguements and evaluations of the topics being discussed.

  • I’m really glad MTB isn’t a big enough business to attract a self-servicer like Nolegs Stinkoff. The Red Bull TV coverage still isn’t gender-balanced in terms of total coverage hours (note that women’s fields are generally smaller), but at least the commentary team simply refer to “riders” instead of gender-specific terms. It’s a small, important nuance that changes the way the viewer looks at the sport.

    • Fred

      The commentators on Red Bull TV kept referring to Neff as “the blonde bombshell” at the beginning of this season, which seemed untoward to me, but they stopped after 3 races or so. I bet someone complained, and I’m glad if they did, as it was getting on my nerves. Watching Ferrand-Prevot take the XC world’s title made me really want to see Sagan and Van Der Poel take on Schurter. Maybe riding like a girl means crossing disciplines, starting on the third row, and still taking world’s :-)

      • Jessi Braverman

        Love this!

  • muhua33

    Thank you for writing this

  • Peter Liljebladh

    Let’s put him on a bicycle in 120 K race against Jaine Longo Ciprelli to see who rides like a girl. It would be a pleasure to watch him cry like a littla boy when an old woman makes him pie in his pants. He may have been a cyklist when he was younger but now he’s nothing more than a fat businessman.

  • Annie.

    Good article. – Don’t talk to him though. He’s nothing but a bored guy getting old. He may have a bit of brains, but not enough heart and soul to get something going properly. So he just throws money and insults around the world like a spoiled child wanting attention. Interesting case, boring person.

    • Paul Kersey

      Facts are not sexist.

  • stefanrohner

    you don’t follow him on twitter?;) but you give him the space he needs on here.


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