Zwiftcast – Episode 27 – ZC Feminine

May 22, 2017

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This episode of the Zwiftcast takes a long hard look at female Zwifters and Zwifting as Simon is joined by Lindsay Guerra and Veronica Micich in the role of guest co-hosts.

The trio kick off with  a look at the everyday experience of Zwifting for women and whether the platform is a more egalitarian space for women than some encounter IRL.

It’s followed up with the first in a series of interview excerpts with Kate Veronneau, head of Women’s Strategy at ZHQ, as she sets out the best ways to counter the gender imbalance in the game, with most estimates putting women in a minority of around 10%.

The trio discuss whether ZHQ’s preferred tactic of boosting female participation using group rides and womens’ only events is the best way forward before considering whether more aggressive methods might be useful.

Inga Thompson was a legendary and pioneering road racer in the American scene in the 80s and early 90’s. In a detailed interview, Inga discusses why she thinks women’s cycling has moved backwards since she left the sport, and pinpoints a “lack of visibility” as a key problem. Simon, Lindsay and Veronica discuss Inga’s contention that Zwift could improve this situation.

Zwift Academy is now rightly recognised as a great success and the trio discuss both winner Leah Thorvilson’s progress and the wider picture, with help from Anne-Marije Rook, the Women’s Editor of the Cycling Tips website. Kate V is back to let us know what’s new in Zwift Academy Two.



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One comment on “Zwiftcast – Episode 27 – ZC Feminine

  1. Pete F May 31, 2017

    As always a great Podcast, thanks Simon.

    I’d love to see more women involved in cycling and agree that platforms like Zwift may be just the ticket to neutralise gender differences. However I wanted to point out that there is already an opportunity to do so, and that’s in the ultra-endurance side of the sport. It’s not something I’ve competed in myself, but have recently been dipping my toe in the field by doing some longer rides (one a little over 1,500 km, the other only 400 km), and while I wasn’t doing anything like the effort the elite competitors do, at an average speed of just under 30 kph, I wasn’t exactly standing around waiting for the bus either! The experience gave me a whole new level of respect for the men and women who are at the top of their game in this area, and they are clearly seriously hard $%^&!.

    The point however is that women not only compete on equal standing with men in ultra-endurance events, but statistically are actually better than the men in terms of results/competitor ratios. I don’t know how this would transfer to other areas, and maybe it doesn’t, however it just highlights that we shouldn’t always fall into the trap of assuming that men and women can’t compete in the same events and expect similar outcomes.

    I hope you will be able to convince Von and Lindsay to join you again, as it was very interesting to hear their perspectives and experiences first hand. Likewise continue to keep up the excellent work Simon. © 2017