by Christine Vardaros

This ‘cross season, Golazo Sports, organizer of the GVA Trofee, Fidea Jaarmaarktcross of Niel, and International Cyclocross Tervuren again elevated women’s competition opportunities in Belgium, the heart of cyclocross.  As of this week, they added another one of their events to the UCI Women’s calendar.  It is the race in Niel to be held November 11.  This makes two new events this year for women (the other was Namur), organized by Golazo, totaling seven of their ten top competition events. As a major race series in European ‘cross, they are setting the tone for other organizers to step it up for women’s racing.

“Women should be treated equal to men in all sports.  In tennis, athletics, gymnastics, etc., women’s competition should be on the same level in terms of media and spectator interest,” said Christophe Impens, Managing Director of Golazo.  Adding, “It is my hope that one day women cyclocross racers will become as popular as their male collegues.”

When asked how he plans to equalize the sexes in ‘cross, Impens explained, “By giving women more competition opportunities, we think that the spectators will have more appreciation for women’s cyclocross.  Top races like Niel and Tervuren will also increase the media interest.  And once media interest increases, the financial rewards for female riders will increase.”

Next summer, Golazo sports is taking their women’s advancement protocol to the mountain bike scene by organizing five UCI mountain bike events in Belgium – all with women’s races.