“All things must pass,” Britain’s George Harrison wrote. Unfortunately, his ageless advice applies to cyclocross as well.
Today, Helen Wyman announced that she will be retiring from the sport after Sunday’s Sluitingsprijs Oostmalle.
In retirement, Wyman will leave a rich legacy in cyclocross, both for her work on the course and off. Wyman started racing cyclocross full-time at age 23, and from there enjoyed a 16-year career as an Elite racer.
At home at British Nationals, Wyman was second to none, winning a total of 10 British Elite National Championships, including the one in early 2018. She was also successful on the international stage, winning the European Championships twice and finishing third at Elite Worlds in 2014.
Wyman became one of the most popular international riders among U.S. fans by starting a number of seasons here in the U.S. with her Kona team before heading back to Europe for the rest of the season. She still maintains a strong relationship with the Charm City Cross race.
She has also written a Wyman Wednesday rider diary here at Cyclocross Magazine that has shared her insight on racing and push for equality in the sport.
Although Wyman’s accomplishments on the course are many, there is a good chance she will be best remembered for her tireless work for women’s equality in cyclocross.
Wyman’s career work was capped with a four-year stint on the UCI Cyclocross Committee, where she pushed for equal payouts, equitable race times and a Junior Women’s category. We have recently seen the fruits of Wyman’s tireless efforts, as the UCI has plans to equalize World Cup payouts, add a Junior Women’s category and up Elite Women’s race times to 50 minutes.
In recent years, Wyman has put her money where her mouth is, sponsoring the Helen 100 program that pays for young riders to race at British Nationals and organizing the Helen 100 Trophy Junior Women’s race at the DVV Trofee race in Loenhout in December.
Wyman recently signed with the Experza – Footlogix team, where she will finish her career. The team has recently committed to cyclocross and has a number of young riders, and Wyman told Cyclocross Magazine she hopes to continue with the team as a coach in retirement.
On her website, Wyman wrote a letter to her fans.
So let me end this letter by saying thank you. Thank you to every single person who has been part of my amazing career on the bike and thank you to every one of you who has helped me make a difference in our very special sport off the bike. For now, this isn’t goodbye, more like tot ziens.
We here at CXM have enjoyed following Wyman’s career, and we would like to wish her the best in retirement.