TV personality Gail Porter and Olympians Laura Kenny CBE and Nicole Cooke MBE lead Cycling UK’s 100 Women in Cycling

Julia MacLean – first female suspension technician on the World Cup circuit and one of the 100 Women. Image: Connor MacLeod
Christina Bengston's picture

TV personality Gail Porter and Olympians Laura Kenny CBE and Nicole Cooke MBE lead Cycling UK’s 100 Women in Cycling

Celebrities are included among less well-known – but no less important and hard-working – women from all areas of cycling

TV presenter and personality Gail Porter, four-time Olympic gold medal winner Laura Kenny CBE and Olympic gold-medallist Nicole Cooke MBE are among 100 women named today (Saturday, 11 July) in Cycling UK’s Women in Cycling awards. The women have all been recognised in celebration of the amazing work they have done to inspire other women to get on their bikes as the national cycling charity officially launches its Women’s Festival of Cycling. 

Other well-known names who have made the list include Paralympian Hannah Dines, who opened the conversation about female saddle pain after having to undergo labial surgery; Isabeau Courdurier, the youngest women to have won the Enduro World Series; Lizzie Deignan, Olympic medallist and 2015 World Road Race Champion; and cycle touring author Bettina Selby.  

The list also includes less well-known names who have been working tirelessly at grassroots level to encourage more women to ride: people like Nour Jarrouj, who was one of the first women to join a cycling initiative in Damascus, Syria, aimed at getting more women out on bikes. After moving to the UK, she went on to join the Bike Project as a project manager, providing bikes, equipment and training to refugee and asylum-seeking women.  

Although the number of women cycling has increased during lockdown, men are still cycling nearly twice as much as women. The Women’s Festival of Cycling aims to address that imbalance by inspiring more women to get in the saddle. 

During the festival we are asking women who cycle to share pictures of their rides with us using the hashtag #BeYouByBike to show the fun, freedom and adventure we can all have on a bike

Helen Cook

Helen Cook, Cycling UK’s head of engagement, said: “Every woman on our list is an incredible ambassador for women’s cycling, and with the surge in interest in cycling over the past few months we want to make sure women continue to get on their bikes and more women join them.  

“During the festival we are asking women who cycle to share pictures of their rides with us using the hashtag #BeYouByBike to show the fun, freedom and adventure we can all have on a bike.” 

Gail Porter said: “I absolutely love cycling; I love it to bits. I wouldn’t be without my bike. 

“When I get on my bike, with no idea where I’m going, it just makes me feel really happy. My bike is like my little sanctuary.” 

When I get on my bike, with no idea where I’m going, it just makes me feel really happy. My bike is like my little sanctuary

Gail Porter

The Women’s Festival of Cycling takes place from 11 to 31 July and includes fun interactive talks aimed at women. 

To find out more about the festival and to read the stories of the 100 inspiring women, visit: www.cyclinguk.org/womensfestival 

Contact information 

For more information contact the national Cycling UK Press Office on 01483 238 315, 07786 320 713 or email publicity@cyclinguk.org 

Notes to editors 

1. Cycling UK, the national cycling charity, inspires and helps people to cycle and keep cycling, whatever kind of cycling they do or would like to do. Over a century’s experience tells us that cycling is more than useful transport; it makes you feel good, gives you a sense of freedom and creates a better environment for everyone. www.cyclinguk.org  

2. For statistics on the number of men and women cycling during lockdown: https://www.cyclinguk.org/press-release/women-encouraged-cycle-more-nhs-data-reveals-slips-trips-and-falls-are-bigger-risks

3. The Women’s Festival of Cycling runs from 11 to 31 July to raise the profile of women’s cycling, putting on digital interactive events to encourage more women to cycle, and featuring the women in cycling who inspire others. www.cyclinguk.org/womensfestival

4. A selection of images of the 100 Women in Cycling are available free to use by the media here: https://www.skyfish.com/p/cyclinguk/1768841

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Cycling UK continues to support the UK to cycle
This remains true during this difficult period with the ongoing threat of coronavirus Covid-19