British Cycling is pleased to announce that, for the first time, a junior women’s road series will take place in 2018.
The four-round series (locations to be announced at a later date) further reinforces and develops the female racing pathway, bridging the gap between youth and senior competition and bringing further racing opportunities for women.
The British Cycling Junior Women’s Road Series will complement the existing HSBC UK | National Women’s Road Series and Women’s Team Series, and maximise competition possibilities for women in the junior age group of 16-18 years.
Jonny Clay, British Cycling’s director of cycling, said: “This is fantastic news and represents another progressive step forward for women’s road racing in Britain. It means that there is now a more structured pathway for progression for female riders moving up from the youth category, which can only aid their education and development as competitive riders.
“This development follows on from some great work by dedicated volunteers in building fledgling events and allowing us to create an appropriately-sized series which further underlines the continued growth of women’s racing.”
The announcement demonstrates the increased growth in female cycling and further underlines British Cycling’s desire to reduce the traditional gender imbalance in the sport. The national governing body has set itself an ambitious target of getting one million more women on bikes by 2020, with developing opportunities for women at all levels of cycling a key part of this.
Julie Harrington, British Cycling’s chief executive, added: “We have enjoyed great success in recent years in terms of getting more women on bikes. Our HSBC UK Breeze programme – designed primarily for beginners – has been extremely successful, but we are also determined to ensure that female riders who are targeting a career in competitive racing have the same opportunities as their male counterparts.
“This announcement follows on from the first ever women’s race at the National Junior Road Race Championships last year, and is another very positive step in the right direction, providing great opportunities for development for our junior women riders, further strengthening the sport.”
Full details of the 2018 British Cycling Junior Women’s Road Series will be announced in due course.