The women’s racing scene is still growing. There are far more men racing than women and there are far more men’s races than women’s races. There are some amazing people who are putting on women’s races but it’s not always easy. Sometimes there are low numbers which means that the organiser can’t afford to put on the event and/or is not motivated to put on another.
- the race has a low number of entrants because the race is on the same day as another women’s race. There aren’t many women racers so if there are 2 races on the same day it splits the small pack of racers between the two and either both will get insufficient numbers or one will be preferred to the other and one will suffer with no or very few entries
- the race has low numbers because of issues with promotion (or lack of promotion) of the race
- the organiser may cancel the race before the race date because not many have entered online x weeks before the race, and they’re not confident they’ll get enough signing up on the day. This is a shame because many women wait til the last pay day before the race date to sign up because they’re short of money.
If you’re not a race organiser then you can help by promoting the races that already exist. Retweet, share on facebook, tell your racing friends, and praise the organisers for doing a good job. If you’re free on the day and not racing maybe you could help to marshal? Ask the organiser if they need any help. Putting on a race is a lot of flippin work! 🙂
If you are a women’s race organiser then thank you. You rock! I hope the info in this article helps…
If it’s possible, check what other races have been scheduled / are planning to be scheduled before you schedule your race. Work with other organisers to minimise clashes.
What to Say When Promoting?
When tweeting about the race, or posting on facebook, it’s more effective if you include the key details plus the link for entry. Make it as easy as possible for people to know about the race and how to enter.
- When is it?
- Where is it?
- Which categories?
- Prize money?
- Equal prize money?
- How much is it to enter?
- Include the link for entering – this is really important
Sound enthusiastic, like you’d love for us to be there with you, and be positive. Please don’t sound negative or blame women for low entries. Women racers want to race. If they’ve not entered your race it could be because they can’t afford to enter yet / it clashes with another race / they can’t get there in time after work.
What “good” looks like:
Women’s 2 day stage race cat 2/3/4 £40 Tameside 29 Aug. Equal prize money. Join us! https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/events/details/126374/Manchester-Wheelers-Women#entry #WomensCycling
When to Promote?
Early and regular but don’t expect entries too far up front as many women are on a low budget and wait til pay day just before the race before signing up, or they enter on the line. If you need an idea of how many are interested in advance then consider creating an event on facebook and asking women racers to say whether they’re likely to sign up or not. Share the event on the women’s facebook groups (see below), tweet a link on twitter & ask people to spread the word.
Give reminders – more frequently nearer the time. People might have missed your earlier tweets / posts. A suggested schedule is below. It may seem like overkill but it’s worth it.
- As soon as you have the link to the online entry page
- 2 months before
- 6 weeks before
- 4 weeks before
- A week before online entry closes
- 2 days before online entry closes
- Day before online entry closes
- 2 weeks before
- 1 week before
- 3 days before
- Day before
Where to Promote?
Promote the race through as many channels as you have access to: forums, twitter, facebook, poster, email, tell people about it and ask them to spread the word. If you’re eye-balls out with all the other elements of organising a race (and I know there a LOT) then ask someone if they can act as your race promoter by doing all this for you.
Below are some facebook groups that I know about that may be helpful for you to post in when promoting a race, and below that are some useful people to tell on twitter. If you know of others please get in touch.
- Women’s Cycling Manchester
- Women’s Cycling Midlands
- Women’s Cycling Sheffield
- Women’s Cycling Ulster
- Women’s Road Race Group North West
- Women’s Racing Yorkshire
- Lancs Racing Scene