Lizzie Armistead: Minimum Wages Can Help Modify Women’s Cycling
Lizzie Armistead has recently put forward a very practical idea in relation to women’s cycling in the Sportswomen show of Sky Sports News HQ. Armistead believes that minimum wages can help modify women’s cycling in the best possible manner.
The 2014 Commonwealth champion and Olympics 2012 silver medalist is of the opinion that the attitude towards women’s cycling has been transformed for sure but still more efforts have to be made in that direction.
She thinks that the UCI (International Cycling Union) has utilized effective strategies and ideas to improve women’s cycling. However, more work has to be done in this area.
Armistead really wants that professional teams should run and fund women’s professional cycling team alongside the existing professional men’s team.
According to her, cycling is also very similar to a business. Women’s cycling needs sponsors and media exposure because without all of this female cyclists are going to have a tough time. Therefore the UCI has to be stronger in this respect and take necessary steps.
Just like the men’s cycling teams have development teams, the women’s cycling teams should also have such development teams, Armistead added.
Brian Cookson (UCI’s president) feels that women’s cycling cannot be professionalized simply by providing minimum wages to the female cyclists. What is needed to change women’s cycling is money.
At both the levels of the UCI and national federation, people should back women’s cycling, get sponsors for it and support in the most effective manner.
Media profiles of the female cyclists have to be enhanced and professional careers (full-time careers) should be offered to them, said Cookson.
Armistead also spoke of her future ambitions and how she is preparing for events like Strada Bianche, Tour of Flanders etc. Her ultimate aim is to be crowned as the World Champion. Therefore she is mostly focusing on the World Championships next year.