Cannondale Supports the Women’s Cycling Challenge
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    the other Derek
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    Aug 2004

    Cannondale Supports the Women’s Cycling Challenge

    The inaugural series turns out to be a huge success!

    Cannondale Bicycles, in its efforts to further women’s cycling, sponsored the inaugural Women’s Cycling Challenge, a women’s road racing point’s series within the Southern California region. In addition to clothing prizes including Cannondale’s award winning Carbon LE jersey and shorts and Cannondale “Get Out & Pedal” branded gear for women, Cannondale donated a women’s specific road racing bike, the R1000 Feminine to the Women’s Cycling Challenge. The bike traveled to 15 races from San Luis Obispo to San Diego and points in between on display for all the racers and spectators to see. Raffle tickets were earned through racing, clinics attended and were bought to support the women’s cycling movement. The R1000 Feminine was presented to southern California resident Kari Allen at the Pasadena location of Cannondale dealer In-Cycle.

    “I never expected to win a bike!” Kari exclaims. Kari is not a racer, but was out watching a friend ride the final race in the series and purchased a Women’s Cycling Challenge jersey, earning herself 40 tickets and the Grand Prize win. While Kari may not be a racer, she has found a passion for cycling in riding for a good cause. 2 years ago Kari was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and has turned the pedals to help support the charity. In her first year of riding, she finished the 70 mile ride of the MS 150, riding from Manhattan Beach to Palos Verdes on a Cannondale road bike. After a year off the bike, Kari picked up her cycling habit again in order to participate in the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Ride to Cure Diabetes for which she and her friends raised $9,000. She finished 100 miles in 103 degree temperatures with 7000 feet in elevation gain. “It was hard,” says Kari, but the look on her face showed she enjoyed the accomplishment. Kari is excited to ride the award winning R1000 Feminine on her weekly group rides, and ultimately the Ride to Cure Diabetes 2007 in Carmel.

    The Women’s Cycling Challenge was created by long time Professional Cyclist and advocate, Dorothy Wong with a mission of encouraging more female cyclists to participate in racing events and welcome beginner cyclists into the sport. The Women's Cycling Challenge was designed to create a competitive cycling series in Southern California and Nevada for women at all levels with the focus of increasing awareness of women’s cycling also providing an environment for women to find mentors, clubs and teams which support, nurture and encourage the growth and enjoyment of the sport of cycling. Another goal of the series is to increase the percentage of women currently licensed in the area. Only about 10% of licensed riders with the Southern California Nevada Cycling Association (SCNCA), the local organization of the United States Cycling Federation (USCF), are wome

    “It was a very positive series,” says Wong after the 15th race was finished. Participant Karen Meske. states “This was my first year of racing, I wanted to do 2 or 3 races to see if I would even like bike racing. By the end of the series the WCC had motivated me do all 15 races.”

    The series started out as an 8 race series, piggybacking on the general Southern California road racing series. The series grew to 11, then to 15 races, with more promoters calling to get on the schedule, according to Wong. The event info at has seen over 17,000 visitors and 267,000 hits since its inception this May.

    Not only did the series draw a 20% increase in female participation in road racing, the series also partnered with the MS Society, drawing new participants for the MS150 in Southern California. Women’s Cycling Challenge participants formed a team to ride together in the charity fundraiser event.


    Bill Rudell
    [email protected]

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