Push for a women’s Tour gathers pace

Since 2015, women road racers have ridden along the Tour de France route, a day ahead of the men’s race

Cycling is a sport that is seemingly run by men for men but a women’s movement is gaining momentum – with the target of a women’s Tour de France.

Furore over the lack of a women’s long-distance stage-based race, except for Italy’s Giro Rosa, gathered pace last July when a self-organised women’s race following the route of the men’s Tour a day earlier received unprecedented media coverage – and Skoda as a sponsor.

Women used to have a Tour equivalent but it stopped in 1989. There is only the one-day La Course, a fraction of the men’s distance – described by former cyclist Kathryn Bertine as “throwing women a token”. Last year, La Course was 112.5km, by comparison, the total men’s distance was 3,351 km.

So women cyclists have taken action. Contradicting the argument that they are not capable of cycling a three-week event, activists Donnons des Elles au Vélo have ...

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