6 Key Findings from Female Pro Riders - Pinkbike's State of the Sport Survey

May 6, 2021 at 15:45
by Alicia Leggett  
Welcome to the 2021 Pinkbike State of the Sport Survey. This anonymous survey is designed to help shed light on key issues affecting the professional field and elite competition. We surveyed the best riders in the world to hear their thoughts, ideas, concerns, and criticisms on mountain biking in 2021. We invited any rider who had finished in the Top 40 overall of their chosen discipline in either of the previous two seasons in either XC, enduro, downhill, or slopestyle & freeride, as well as notable non-competition riders and highly ranked juniors. We then published them in full and publicly. To read the introduction to the survey click here, and to see all the other currently published SOTS articles click here.

Mountain biking is a male-dominated sport, and so snapshots of pro riders as a whole are not necessarily representative of how things are going for the smaller population of women within the sport. While women's mountain biking has grown significantly over the last several years, the women's competitive side of the sport is less developed than the men's side of things. In this survey, 61% of the riders were men, while the remaining 39% of those surveyed are women. This article deals specifically with responses from those 77 female pro riders who gave us their thoughts on the state of the sport.

Most Women Want to Race the Same Courses as the Men

The vast majority of women surveyed think that men and women should race on the same courses. Many of them feel that to promote equality and respect for women, it's important to understand that despite physiological differences from men, the professional women in this sport are exceedingly capable and can compete on the same courses as the men.

We did, however, receive one comment from a woman who says women would benefit from having smaller jumps in some competitions. That perspective is interesting, for example looking back to the 2019 Crankworx Whistler Speed & Style event, the first of its kind with a women's category. A strong group of women showed up to throw down - including some household names - but many struggled to carry enough momentum through the course to clear the big jumps, especially in the wind that showed up on the big day. Instead of being able to show off their best tricks, the competition became more about just getting over the jumps. After the event, some competitors said they wished the course design had been more realistic for the current stage of development of women's freeride.

That said, women's mountain biking is evolving quickly as more opportunities are afforded women and the sport develops further. It seems like big jumps and gnarly courses are here to stay, which is exactly what most of the women want.

In response to the statement 'The course should be the same, irrespective of gender,' 53.2% strongly agreed, 35.2% agreed, 10.4% responded neutrally, and 3.9% disagreed. None strongly disagreed.

Female Pros Say There's a Pay Gap

We asked women in the sport whether they think there's a pay for professional female vs. male riders.

More than half the women surveyed responded ‘strongly agree’ to the statement ‘there is a gender pay gap in mountain biking.’ Another 29.9% responded ‘agree,’ putting the total agree answers at 83.1%. 11.7% were neutral, 3.9% disagreed, and 1.3% strongly disagreed.

It seems that many of the pro women we surveyed would like to be valued based on competitive results, rather than on social media followings or other metrics. We saw similar feedback from the men's side of the survey. It's important to acknowledge that the competitive mountain bike scene is subsidized by brands that want to sell their products, and that racers and brands aren't always motivated by the same things. Brands that hire racers to sell things will always be somewhat at odds with racers who feel their only job is to compete, regardless of gender.

A selection of anonymous responses to the question 'How much less do you think you might be paid than an equivalent male rider?

bigquotesI can only really speak for the DH World Cup scene, but it really depends on where you stand as a racer. I'd say the top maybe 3 women probably do get paid equally to their male equals, but to actually make a living as a woman you have to be a consistent top 5 racer. Whereas in the men's field, I'd estimate that about a top 30 racer can make a living off of racing. Even proportionately, that's a pretty big gap.

bigquotesI have no idea. There is no communication around this. A topic not allowed to talk about.

bigquotesThe salary of women between rank 5-15 compared to the men's 5-30 might be around 10x smaller... Some women winning World Cup were paid 10k a year at first. It is a huge problem because no one knows how much the other is making! Therefore, women are signed for peanuts because another one will take her place if we step up! I've raced World Cups for over 10 years without any salary.

bigquotesI think that as a woman I get 50% less maybe even more.

bigquotes$20,000 less than comparable male.

bigquotesFor starters I don’t get paid at all and I’m sure they would rather look at paying a male over me first.

The Numbers Say There's a Pay Gap Too

The pay gap is real across all disciplines in mountain biking. Many men in the sport earn more than $100k, but it is much more difficult for women to break out of the $50k-$100k pay bracket - just 1.4% of women surveyed earn more than $100k each year, about 10 times less than the amount of men that do. Similarly, many more women than men earn less than $5000 from mountain biking each year: 32.9% of women responded that they earn less than $5000 each year, compared with 23.4% of men.

Note: The chart and comments above represent all the responses except one, which came from the only rider to tell us they make more than $500k per year from mountain biking. We know that a select few riders in the sport (male and female) do make more than $500k, but since only one shared this information with us, we have decided to exclude them from all charts that break down salary by gender, discipline, or other characteristics that could be used to identify them. In creating this survey, we promised the riders anonymity, and we want to deserve their trust.

It's also worth noting that once a rider reaches a certain level of celebrity, they are able to transcend the mountain bike world a bit and attract sponsors from outside the sport, meaning that the outliers who attain that status are not totally representative of what happens within the bike industry.

The Majority of Women Surveyed Feel They've Have Experienced Sexism In The Sport

It's no secret that mountain biking is still quite male-dominated and, although things are shifting, attitudes toward women in the sport have a long way to go. The numbers here suggest that the majority of female MTB pros feel they've experienced sexism in the sport, while roughly 20% say they have not personally experienced sexism in mountain biking.

In response to the statement ‘I have experienced sexism in the sport of mountain biking,’ the largest contingent of women (35.1%) answered ‘strongly agree,’ while 28.6% responded ‘agree.’

The remaining 38% was divided into 14.3% who responded ‘neutral,’ 18.2% who chose ‘disagree,’ and 3.9% who strongly disagreed.

Interestingly, some who said they had not experienced sexism in the sport did answer that there is a gender pay gap, perhaps suggesting that they feel the pay gap is not inherently the result of sexism.

75% of Women Would Support Legislation to Diversity Teams

One idea that has floated around to help diversity the sport is to require UCI trade teams to include female and/or junior riders. Such legislation would help ensure that fewer women and up-and-coming riders are left out in the cold, so to speak. Such legislation could perhaps also help narrow the pay gap by offering women better sponsorship opportunities.

In response to the statement 'I would support legislation to diversify the professional field. Ie. an elite UCI trade team must have at least 2 of the following: a male, a female and a junior,' 41.6% strongly agreed, 33.8% agreed, 15.6% were neutral, 6.5% disagreed, and 2.6% strongly disagreed.

How can we make the sport more inclusive?

A selection of responses to the question 'What changes would you like to see in mountain biking to make it more inclusive for women?'

bigquotesIt’s hard to pin down specific changes that I’d like to see, since it requires a cultural shift more than anything. I’d like to see a shift towards viewing female riders as good riders first and women second - it seems like so many teams get a female rider and are satisfied that they’re good and very supportive of women because they got a token female rider, but then seem hesitant to have another female on the roster. It also pains me to constantly hear female riders being talked about for their looks alone; good and bad. We’re riders, we’re not up on course to give others an opportunity to judge our appearances.

bigquotesMore support, equal pay for the same work.

bigquotesFirst off, 20 qualifiers instead of 15 at the races! Maybe not during the pandemic, but before some World Cups had up to 45-50 girls racing. Equal prize money would be cool too. In general I'd like the UCI to stop making things more difficult for privateers. A lot of women racing race as privateers, only a handful have full factory support.

bigquotesTransparency + equal pay.

bigquotesTraining in A group.

bigquotesDevelopment teams for women in all disciplines of racing. There seems to be more of this in XC than in enduro or DH. Provide opportunities for younger females to grow as cyclists. As a company, support women not because of their Instagram follower count, but rather what they are doing in the sport. Maybe it is top-level racing or coaching, then as a company use your platforms to share your athlete. Too much weight is on the athlete's shoulders to promote themselves, aka their brand(s). IMO the brands should be doing more to promote their athletes. Showcase your athlete, make a video, get an article posted, set up an event, etc.

bigquotesSpecifically for racing, I’d like to see more women able to qualify for World Cups, I’d like to see it mandatory for teams to have a female in order to support women and help progression and exposure so women as part of MTB is normal. I’d like us to be seen as mountain bikers, who love riding as much as everyone else!

bigquotesMore support. The more support we get and the more welcoming the environment is the more women will show up. With more women out racing then it encourages others to get involved too.

bigquotesSwitching up the schedule for race weekend rather than always building towards the men's event.
Male staff such as mechanics etc not treating women like they don't know what they want their bike setup to be.
Descriptive words used to describe women that aren't used for men.
Not mentioning women's weight or appearance and associating that with predicting their race form.
When promoting women's racing, talk about the actual race drama instead of always just talking about inequality (although this obviously needs to be a focal point too).
Equal prize money obviously.
Equal pay.
Standardized contracts regardless of male or female.
Lift women up for their achievements in the sport, not their appearance.
Less focus on the sex sells angle.

bigquotesNo need to sugar coat women only stuff, I just want to see equality. Both men and women together, riding, racing, promoting, filming, working. Pay equal, offer equal opportunities.

bigquotesThere are a lot of things, but some that come to mind are more equal opportunities & support for events/races/competitions for women (equal pay, comparable events for both men & women, etc). More brand/industry encouragement and support for women (featuring, including, and sponsoring more women). Fewer sexist comments and ideology surrounding women in mountain biking in general.


  • 234 5
 This series is fascinating, thank you for doing this. The exposure you are creating is sobering and well overdue.
  • 43 4
 I’m just hijacking this for exposure but..

If you want to make the sport more inclusive then you need to change how the team competition works, want to be in the running for best team then you have to have a female and/or junior on your roster, it’s shocking that some of the top brands *cough* Santa Cruz pay exuberant amounts for top riders but don’t have any juniors or women on the factory team and get to Compete with teams who do invest in development and inclusivity at a factory level
  • 38 28
 Unpopular opinion. I generally don't watch womens DH racing. Just not interested in watching a run that wouldn't finish anywhere near the top 20-30 fastest times down the track.
  • 24 5
 @excavator666: that's not an unpopular opinion. I mean, the ratings prove it to be the predominent opinion.
  • 26 3
 @conoat: I do watch women's XC though. The lap times may not be as fast as the men's, but it's a better spectacle because when riders are all on track at the same time, the competitive element is more apparent. I'm not saying that the DH ladies aren't giving everything they've got, but it's simply a matter of optics.

Do men deserve to get paid more because going down the hill faster puts them at greater risk? Are women actually at greater risk because men are able to take more of a beating? Is it simply a matter of optics?

Just parts of the overall argument which need to be discussed to get to the crux of the issue.
  • 32 5
 @excavator666: the "crux" if there is one, is one of agenda. Remove all emotion and opinion from the matter and use only facts, statistics and proveable results, and you will see that revenue is king. Always has been, always will be.

I agree with you about XC. Also women's sports like 6 a side volleyball are almost *more* compelling in certain ways than the Men's game. Women's volleyball is so strategic. long volleys, tons of angles, more accuracy. the mens game is straight Nitromethane power. 90mph servers and 100mph spikes from 3 feet above the net that leave a depression in the floor. there is no nuance. it's just brute f*cking force. It's a good spectacle and all, but the women's sport is more engaging from a consumer standpoint IMO.

but the issue around pay and representation will always come down to how marketable a certain aspect is. That will come down to revenue and so long as no one is watching Women's DH or whatever, Advertisers won't spend their money there. When advertisers don't spend their money there, there is no money to pay the athletes.

TLDR: you can't guilt the free market into behaving the way you would like.
  • 7 1
 @conoat: Good points. Athletics are entertainment not engineering. Equal pay for equal work sounds great but like you said it comes down to marketing and revenue. WNBA players don't make as much as NBA players and it isn't because they don't work hard, it is because billions of people watch the NBA but maybe millions watch WNBA.
  • 6 32
flag roadieinmtbclothing (May 11, 2021 at 7:17) (Below Threshold)
 @conoat: I prefer women's volleyball for totally different reasons, if you know what I mean...
  • 4 6
 @excavator666: Thats the truth bro well done for saying it.
  • 11 13
 @conoat: or you could use your free will to support a segment of the market where "advertisers don't spend their money" because you give a shit about equality
  • 5 2
 @toad321: Then you also need to expect that others on the team will be paid less. Teams have budgets, and those budgets don't magically grow by having the organizing body mandate the number of competitors a team must field.

We would all like full teams with well paid athletes. I'd also like a covid free world, I don't think the odds favor one over the other.
  • 3 3
 @conoat: How dare you use logic and facts?!
  • 7 6
 @GotchaJimmy: Apparently everybody else's free will says the men's events are still better.
  • 4 1
 @GotchaJimmy: I think you're talking more about equity than equality. Many seem to mix this up. Equality would be treating everyone exactly the same and apparently some aren't happy with this. Equality is what we should strive for imo. Life is complex, sometimes men have an advantage, sometimes women.
  • 5 0
 @excavator666: Right now a tiny fraction of female racing is supported. When more females start riding bikes and more women are drawn to, and are represented in the sport of mountain biking, then the gap between men’s/ and women’s time will start to shrink.
  • 6 0
 @thechunderdownunder: in 2018 the WSL (World Surf League) aanounced paying equal prize money for men and women, they also for mix up men's and women's in events, so rather than women's event first to finish, then men's to finish, they will run women's quarters then men's quarters, women's semis then men's semis, women's final then men's final. This achieves two things, they are in the live stream side by side at the peak of the competition and events are usually run to have the best waves for the finals, so women and men get to compete in the best conditions. They also have some women's only events/ locations, so if you've got involved you are likely to tune in to those too. These are active changes WSL have made to grow the women's side of the sport, they haven't waited for it - although it might still be later than you'd expect looking back from 20 years in the future. Personally, since 2019 I have noticed those women in say 5-20 really step up their performances and it seems to me the womens competiton already has more depth. Maybe the equal pay means they know they can make a living, and therefore dedicate 100% to it (travel, training, PTs, coaching, etc) maybe just knowing the WSL is behind them 100%, maybe the sponsors have stepped up becuase they share premium live streams. It's all possible to achieve right now and it's all good. Like others have said, sometimes I even prefer to watch the women's surfing, as the men's has become so focused on power and technique some have lost the style aesthetic.
  • 2 0
 @Braindrain: such a good example. thank you
  • 2 0
 @Braindrain: Those are all great observations and ideas! Your right, there should be a concentrated push towards equality in mountain biking. I just wanted to point out that the reason the for the gap in times between the men and the women pros, noted by @excavator666, are more complicated then just males are fast and women are not. As one of my female friends who was a pro enduro racer said, “women are encouraged to keep their faces pretty, not to shred bikes”. It seems obvious to point out that the more women start riding the more shredders we will start to see.
  • 1 0
 “You are right”
  • 126 2
 I feel like all women's racing needs to follow the lead of women's XC racing... they seem to be closing the coverage gap and the wage gap faster than any other type of racing, and they've done it without trying to artificially regulate equality. They race basically the same races as the men and they've put out an incredible product, developing talent and then showcasing that talent and it's attracted more and more viewers, sponsors, and dollars.

You'll always have a*sholes that can't see past "girls on bikes" but I think the number of riders today who don't just see women's XC as amazing riders first and foremost are a dying minority.
  • 38 2
 @badbadleroybrown well said. Anyone who really pays attention to racing knows that the quality of competition found in the women's XC field is incredible and deserving of recognition.
  • 21 1
 Not to mention that the increase in coverage has helped many people realize that women's XC is often more entertaining than the men's, at least for the past few years because of Nino. The dude is amazing, but the overall isn't really a competition on the men's side.
  • 11 1
 Although enduro is the first discipline to have equal prize money. As far as media coverage is concerned, RedBull and the EWS commentary teams do very well to cover male and female riders quite evenly.
  • 45 2
 Deep field, really competitive racing.

The women's xc in the past few years has been intense and thrilling, whilst the men's somewhat boring with Nino dominating (looks like it could be a different story this year).

Men's DH and EWS has been similar, intensely competitive with races going down to the last moment.

Women's DH and EWS not so much.

Rachel Atherton used to win everything by a country mile and the field rather small.

In EWS Isabeau wins by a country mile every, single time. And even then when Cecile was around, she would routinely beat Isabeau by another mile, every single time.

Field has gotta be deep and the racing intense to get the eyeballs.
  • 4 0
 I rarely agree with you @badbadleroybrown but hats off to you good sir for pointing out the example of XC racing.
  • 4 4
 So what are the barriers for DH? What's it like in MX, for example, after many more years of history? The answer/threshold for significant female interest might lay somewhere along the line between road and the pure gravity disciplines. Enduro might be it.
  • 5 4
 ...well he's @badbadleroybrown baddest man in the whole damn town...
  • 14 3
 Do you think this is influenced at all by XC racing being an Olympic sport? If countries are supporting their men's and women's teams equally, XC is likely the area of the sport where equality has been "artificially regulated" the most.

Of course as you suggest, this indicates that if women were given an equivalent level of support elsewhere, we might start to see more success elsewhere as well.
  • 2 0
 @Mooseymtb: Up until this year I'd agree. IMPO, This year the Men's side of the XC house is going to get very interesting/competitive again.
  • 12 7
 @Oreithya: Bingo! The IOC has administered the biggest "artificial" stimulus in the world to the sport of women's XC: *Olympic Gold!* It is worth every bit as much in a women's event is as a men's event for a nation's overall medal tally, so all of a sudden, we've got even the Chinese government paying to fly their women around the world for World Cups, and XC bike makers are incentivized to have women on their teams for the enticing prospect of medals won on their bikes in front of a global audience! The OP above is entirely correct about the compelling state of women's XC competition at present, but demonstrates a glaring lack of understanding that it was not "free market" forces that got us there...
  • 13 18
flag badbadleroybrown (May 10, 2021 at 20:17) (Below Threshold)
 @Veloscente: Rolleyes
Yeah, you're right... that's why Jenny Rissveds, Maja Włoszczowska , and Catherine Pendrel are currently the top women's riders, right? You're fooling yourself if you think an event that happens once every four years is what's driven women's XC to excel above other disciplines rather than the simple reality that decades of youth development in multiple countries has produced a tremendous amount of talent that's culminating in engaging, competitive racing on the dirt and drawing in fans.

The vast majority of fans couldn't tell you who won the gold medal in Rio but damn near all of them could tell you that Loana Lecomte put on a commanding performance last weekend... and she didn't even line up for the last olympics. One of the most popular current riders, Kate Courtney, wasn't in Rio either, and arguably the best female rider, Pauline Ferrand Prevot, was a DNF in Rio. These women are being recognized and paid for the high quality, competitive product they're producing week in and week out; one that's being increasingly recognized as just as competitive and engaging as that which the men are producing... not a one off race that happens every four years that most fans don't care about.

Next time you want to spout sexist ignorance or try to throw shade on the "free market," at least have the decency to be succinct.
  • 14 16
 @badbadleroybrown: 226 words of aimless, flavor-of-the-minute name-dropping culminating in blissfully self-blind demand for "succinctness:" that's utterlly hilarious. Not one single sexist word, here or above. Women's XC went Olympic in 1996, deservedly at same time as men's. Women's XC has benefitted from 25yrs of global, youth development support at the highest level because governments value Olympic Gold above all else in sport. Not a single one of those governments cares in the least what you think as a niche-sport spectator, and outside of a half-dozen "cycling nations" none of them really care what happens in the 3 years between Olympics either.
  • 11 20
flag badbadleroybrown (May 10, 2021 at 21:17) (Below Threshold)
 @Veloscente: Still working hard at sounding stupid, huh... at least you're consistent. Olympic gold is all important... that's why professional pole vaulting is so profitable, right. That's why women are raking in the cash and sponsorship deals for medaling in biathlon, right? FOH

Pauline Ferrand Privot has been racing at the highest level for a decade, she's been world champion on the road, in cyclocross, and on the mountain bike, multiple times... but she's a "flavor-of-the-minute" name drop huh? The three women who took medals at the last olympics, in 2016, are "flavor-of-the-minute" now even though they've only met with moderate success as pro's... despite your suggestion that olympic development is what's driving professional competition. Sounds legit.

You know, there's far easier ways for you to announce to everyone that you have no clue wtf you're talking about, but you've certainly succeeded in proving your case in that regard nonetheless. Beer
  • 3 0
 In DH I don't see why they separate the show now Redbull. I always see woman to see a more mortal speed most of us would ride so I can realize how fast the guys are doing...
  • 5 0
 TBH, for the last 3 years I have found the women's XCO much more exciting the the men's. The racing was so tight.

Although I am a big Nino fan, it was a bit boring to watch his dominance. With the women's field there were 5 or 6 potential racers that could take the top step on any given weekend which kept it really interesting to watch. That only happens when there is good grass roots development in place, which I agree the XCO scene has done well. I don't know how that translates to pay and sponsorship though - would be interesting to see that breakdown within the women's section of the survey (XCO vs DH vs Freeride). I suspect gaps, although there, will probably be smaller in the XCO field.
  • 5 1
 I'm not sure you really said anything at all with that first paragraph in the original post @badbadleroybrown , lol. Your statement hasn't acknowledged that there are inherent factors with how XC and DH are set up at the World Cup level that have allowed women's XC racing to build a large deep field while the DH pool of competitive riders remains small. So yes some "artificial regulation" as you say is needed to at least let more women race DH finals.

If DH world cups were to follow the lead of XC world cups they would start by having the same field size! 40 starters in both the men and women short track race in Albstadt last weekend. Imagine if there were 60 men and 15 women in the ST, it would make the women's race way less exciting and less racers would get experience to get better and move up the ranks. That's what the field would look like if XC was following the DH lead...

In the main XC at Albstadt their were 72 women on the start list (154 on the men's side) and if more women had been signed up (with the proper points) I assume they would have been able to race. In Women's DH world cup only 15 get to race each week and mix it up for a result, no wonder it's so hard for a deep women's field to develop in downhill! They don't even get a chance to race and they know it. Making it even harder to justify spending the time, money and effort to get ready and go to a world cup DH.
  • 2 0
 Whatching the short course on Friday, the women's racing was way more exciting. Watching them close that 14 second gap on that last lap was insane. I wish they would just make it 7 laps like the guys racing and then all things would be equal as far as the spectating goes.
  • 2 5
 @Maxcommencemal: no offence but that’s not really a good thing. The men’s field is way more competitive than the females so why are they taking half of the prize money and talking half an highlight episode?
  • 57 10
 Can’t help but notice you avoided asking if they think people born male should be allowed to race in the womens category.. pretty hot topic at the moment and it seems to be one that women don’t get a voice in
  • 24 13
 Ya, I saw "it's important to understand that despite physiological differences from men" and thought, will this article be flagged as hate speech & deleted, like some of my comments have been for saying the same thing?
  • 10 8
 No, we prefer to leave that discussion to men grandstanding in the PB comment section about an issue that doesn't affect them. Have fun, boys!
  • 9 6
 @ryetoast: It will affect my two daughters. Should just not care about them? Guaranteed, if the womens event is unfair (I have to be careful with my words here or my comment will be deleted and I will be suspended, again) then no one is going to watch it. What does that mean for the women athletes? Maybe one of my daughters will want to compete in a sport. What does that tell them when they have to enter an unfair competition, or when professional womens sports dies off? Should I just leave it alone and tell them "too bad" since it doesn't affect me?
  • 9 7
 @hamncheez: Yes it will affect them. My daughter raced in NICA for two years. In the NICA handbook they specifically allow kids to race in male or female divisions based on what gender they identify with.

It's ironic that so many are pushing for more women in cycling, then seeing the a huge organization like NICA allowing teenage boys to compete against the girls while they are trying to build confidence on a bike.
  • 4 6
 @hamncheez: well the world doesn't only revolve around you and your right wing conspiracy driven worldview bro: twitter.com/HRC/status/1381970435428941832

Yeah I know you only care about the womenz rights and da natural order of things...
  • 3 5
 @KalkhoffKiller: Haha, what a lie that tweet is. There are 0 states that ban transgenders from sports. They are banning Men from competing against women.

Here, defend this now cdn-images-1.medium.com/max/1600/0*2IMsAt_imCEMI0oj.png
  • 2 5
 @hamncheez: it's essentially a ban and denying trans kids healthcare will put them through male puberty which is then used against them to play sports without getting discriminated and harassed by bigots and transphobes like you.
  • 4 4
 @KalkhoffKiller: Trans kids are like vegan cats. We know whats really going on.

Amputation of your sex organs, and/or severe, medically unnecessary hormone treatments are not "healthcare". Children cannot sign a contract nor consent to sex, but they can "consent" to destroying their health with treatments and surgeries that have not been proven to reduce anxiety, suicide, nor have any physiological benefits?

And the tweet you linked to literally says "Since the start of 2021, legislators in more than 30 states have introduced bills that would ban transgender kids from playing sports", which is false.
  • 2 4
 @hamncheez: bro, stop talking about stuff you know nothing about and consume less foxnews and breitbart news
  • 2 1
 @KalkhoffKiller: There is no reliable evidence that putting children on HRT improve their life outcomes or lower suicide rates. Please, prove me wrong.

All you do is hurl insults. Do you have any substance behind your arguments?
  • 2 1
 @hamncheez: There are multiple studies that prove quality of life is improving but its strongly linked to the support of families which is not surprising. You are probably getting your information from the murdoch-driven TERF/right-wing-anti-trans disinfo-campaign.

  • 5 3
 @KalkhoffKiller: Yes! I was waiting for you to bring these up.

While I haven't seen this Cornell literature review, I have encountered many of these studies already. In the Cornell review, they cite 51 studies, but only one of them has a study duration longer than 10 years (14 years). If you ask an alcoholic how their quality of life is 1 year into drinking VS 10 years, you get very different results.

I took the time to look over all their reviewed studies, and while I could be mistaken there isn't a single one that studied effects on minors.

Of these, the one with the largest sample size was 247; n=247 would be laughed out of the room in an Economics peer review with such a low number (this is a very hard thing to study with statistical significance because transgender identifying people is not a large population).

Most of these have headlines like "showed improvements in quality of life outcomes 12 months after initiating hormone therapy " (literal quote), but when you dig deeper you read that they didn't achieve statistical significance.

One of the studies (actually another literature review) didn't say that HRT doesn't work, but rather that the evidence that it does work is bad evidence: "Hormone therapy interventions to improve the mental health and quality of life in transgender people with gender dysphoria have not been evaluated in controlled trials. Low quality evidence suggests that hormone therapy may lead to improvements in psychological functioning. Prospective controlled trials are needed to investigate the effects of hormone therapy on the mental health of transgender people." It kinda trashes many other pro-transgender treatment studies, showing how they aren't rigorous, clinical, and rely too heavily on survey data instead of actual measurable outcomes.

The Cornell review mentions a reduction in suicide in the summary, but when you look into their conclusions they say "Transgender individuals... who cannot access treatment for gender dysphoria... are more likely than the general population to experience health challenges such as depression, anxiety, suicidality and minority stress" which is true of post-op transgender identifying people as well. I could have missed one, but only one of the 51 cited studies mention suicide, and that study said " gender reassignment, for those who required it, emerged as key protective factors [for suicide]" but they don't provide any numbers. In the acknowledgements, they say "This work was supported by the Scottish Transgender Alliance " which kinda ruins their credibility.

Most of the work done in this area in the last 10 years has been infected with activism, and doesn't produce credible data. I could go on, study by study, but no one will read that comment (this one is already far too long). Google "James Lindsay"; the academy as of late has been far more political and $$$ motivated than by objective science. There is very little data for HRT on children, and what does exist shows that they can lose bone mass and have a host of other health issues, as would be exptected when you delay or alter the natural puberty process. None are long enough for any valid findings, for or against, on childrens mental health. With adults, the evidence is all really bad or inconclusive.

The point is, to justify ruining someone health especially a child, sterilizing them, making them dependent on medication for the rest of their lives, and completely altering their life trajectory should require a mountain of evidence, and its not there.
  • 4 4

Boys smash girls at sports before going through puberty. If you have convinced yourself that boys can be girls and girls can boys then all the power to you. Lots of religious people live in delusional states their entire lives and it seems to work well for them.
  • 1 2
 @Adamrideshisbike: Hey I'm religious haha.
  • 2 3
 @hamncheez: I grew up that way and I'm glad to have.
  • 4 2
 @Adamrideshisbike: your first statement is delusional, but I guess it's working for you...
  • 2 4
 @ryetoast: Clever comeback.
  • 4 2
 @Adamrideshisbike: Facts are clever, yes.
  • 1 3
 @ryetoast: Google what? Its very, very clear that, as the author of this article states, "it's important to understand that despite physiological differences from men". These differences not only happen before puberty, they can me measured in fetuses. Otherwise, why have a separate womens category at all?
  • 4 3
 @hamncheez: there's no difference in athletic performance between boys and girls before puberty. And nobody is measuring athletic performance before birth. All fetuses are crap at sports.
  • 2 1
 @ryetoast: That is a very difficult statement to make. Beyond the anecdotal evidence of my son vs my daughters, the widespread evidence of males out performing females, even before puberty is overwhelming.

Before we are even born, there are measurable differences in our frontal cortex where males can perceive 3D space and motion better (think throwing and catching) but where women can see more nuanced colors.
  • 2 2
 @hamncheez: beyond the anecdotal evidence of me being the fastest child in my grade until the last week of 6th grade when one Drew T. finally beat me at the 100 yard dash (yes, I am still bitter about it)... Google it. Also who is showing color swatches to a fetus, seriously, they haven't opened their eyes yet.
  • 46 2
 The article touches on the fact that pay is more about what a rider is worth to a brand regardless of gender or results. I agree that prize money should be equal but when it comes to money from sponsorship it might be a tougher by to crack in a sport that is still male dominated.
  • 54 6
 The "equal pay/equal work" position doesn't hold a lot of water in professional sports. What if work twice as hard but lack natural talent and barely qualify?
  • 17 20
 @jaame: But they are as good in their own field of sport, so why shouldn't the best females get paid the same as the best males? They both put in the effort to be the best in their category.
  • 76 56
 @fatduke: you’ve got a hundred singers. 50 can si-i-ing. 50 of them can’t sing that well. It’s not their fault. They were just born with physical characteristics not perfectly suited to singing really well. They still live singing and go to singing classes, write songs etc. They work just as hard as the ones that are unreal singers.
Some people will listen to the ones that aren’t that good, but most people aren’t buying any of their albums.
Should they get paid the same?
That’s the situation we have here. Half the population is not as good. Half the population is not “doing equal work” because it has to have its own category to “make it fair”.
I don’t get the argument at all that the women should make the same when they are demonstrably worse at the job. Doctors, teachers, politicians, project managers, database administrators. They absolutely should make the same money as men because they literally do the same job. In sport, they do not do the same job, and therefore do not deserve the same pay!
A man has to beat a whole stack of hard core talented hungry guys to get anywhere near the podium in a race at any level. A girl just has to turn up in a lot of cases. Why are we pretending it’s equal work? It’s not!
Any woman who thinks they deserve the same as men for this sport, but is not willing to actually compete against the men to get that money, stinks of entitlement.

Get real everyone!
  • 22 41
flag Spencermon (May 10, 2021 at 15:11) (Below Threshold)
 @jaame: So, what you're basically saying is that women should just settle for not enjoying racing competitively? like at all? next you're gonna suggest they pick up some other hobbies like cooking and cleaning? making you sandwiches?
  • 24 31
flag crysvb (May 10, 2021 at 15:11) (Below Threshold)
 @jaame: ...they are doing the same thing though LOL they're risking their bodies the same way, they're putting in the same amount of time into training, they're travelling the same amount, they're paying the same for their bikes and maintenance, why shouldn't they get paid the same? shouldn't matter if they're not pulling the same times as men. it's still racing.
  • 65 9
 I can't find cycling info, but the NBA finals averages roughly 20 million viewers per finals game; WNBA 400,000. What else is there to say? Womens sports don't bring in as much revenue. Both men AND women watch mens sports more. There really isn't much more to discuss.

You know what biker makes more money than 99% of all sponsored racers? That Seths bike hacks guy. Is that unfair? What competitive results does he have? Should we enact legislation to somehow cap his salary? Or make him start a "Debra's Bike Hacks" youtube channel featuring a female rider?

People of both genders demand mens sports more than womens. If we want real change, thats the metric we have to change, and everything else will come.
  • 29 3
 To decrease the gender wage gap in mountain biking, you have to also decrease the viewer gap. Until the same amount of people watch the womens as the mens, there will always be a gap.
  • 22 2
 @Spencermon: while I’m not particularly excited to associate myself with jaame given how he expressed himself, I don’t see where he said that at all.

If women want competitive opportunities and don’t feel they can achieve it against the men, they should have their own category. Nothing in jaame’s post even hints at an objection to this. Likewise, I doubt he has any objection to age groups in amateur competition.

But if you need separate categories - and I don’t see any of these women questioning that assumption - then it’s fair to question whether “equal work” really applies. If a masters athlete complained that it was unfair that elites got more sponsors, you might fairly ask how they concluded the two groups were on equal footing.

None of this is defending the situation women face. The fact that a woman often can’t even be seen and paid independent from her sexual desirability is awful. The fact that you have to be top 10 in the world to make a living is just sad. And I love that women shredders are increasingly influential, and the improving women's race scene. But that still doesn’t mean the conditions inherent to “equal pay for equal work” are met.
  • 7 21
flag JayUpNorth (May 10, 2021 at 18:08) (Below Threshold)
 @hamncheez: If we had this conversation in 1960 about female doctors or 2010 about women in mma would we feel pretty silly about the stuff we had written? We have to be careful about analysing data and making assumptions.
  • 11 2
 @JayUpNorth: Why would you feel silly?

Hamncheez did not say anything implying that women weren't capable of closing the gap, or were inherently disadvantaged. He didn't even imply that women were at fault for the disparity. He just clearly stated the variable that needs to be changed for true equality to be achieved.

Unless your point is that women's MMA is a counterpoint proving that female athletes still lag in pay even when their sport rivals the mens side in popularity. But I'm not aware of data showing that.
  • 15 15
 @hamncheez: on the NBA / WNBA argument. I believe the NBA had about an 80 year head start, with exclusivity, and was allow to develop a fan base and marketing system uncontested during that entire period. Expecting a new comer in any market to compete with an 8 decade old monopoly is ridiculous.
  • 12 15
 @Boxmtb: but to do that they’d have to intentionally give the women equal broadcast time, which they don’t, and folks like yourselves will use the “lower viewing rate” as a reason not to. The investment comes before the payoff, not the other way around, you’re literally expecting women’s sport to produce results without investment.
  • 17 3
 @pcledrew: Sigh. Why are you calling people fools? Because they mentioned a reality you don't like?

He never said viewing opportunity was equal, nor did he say the women had done anything wrong to deserve their viewership. He just said the viewing time had to be equal before pay would follow. Which is a fact so blindly obvious that it borders on inanity, but it apparently needs to be said. Instead of insulting, try having a discussion about how to get more people to watch women's sports. Feel free to document the gap in race broadcasting in that discussion.

And that "monopoly" the WNBA is "competing" with? They're actively promoting the WNBA profits from the NBA using the same vaunted marketing system. Including running in game promos for the WNBA during NBA games. Because the NBA, you know, founded the WNBA. In 1997. That's 24 years. Hardly a helpless newcomer who never had a chance under the heel of Goliath.
  • 14 4
 This is hilarious. I said the viewership numbers aren't even, and they will have to become even if compensation is to be even. I never implied any reasons why they aren't even, nor did I put any value judgement on it.
  • 3 19
flag pcledrew (May 10, 2021 at 20:06) (Below Threshold)
 @Blackhat: With the NBAs assistance or not, all I'm saying is comparing the viewership numbers is intentionally misleading, as one has had a century to build viewers and the other simply hasn't.
  • 10 3
 @Blackhat: "People of both genders demand men's sports more than women's".

I think he's right that's a given. But I think his further comments about revenue and viewership reinforce classic arguments against women in sports that is inherently an unfair comparison. To make these types of statements without examining biases is just glossing over the real issues and doing nothing to undo systematic barriers. What do we need to do to address this bias.

Given @hamncheez's numbers, on face value it looks like we have direct competition and people favour men's sports. But forget equity, it there even equality? Do people have equal access to WNBA games, or do you need premium sports packages to watch? Not everyone has the Ocho. Is the production value the same? Is the level of play by play coverage the same? Is one gender buried at the end of the 1/2 hour of sports coverage? So forget the 50 year head start, forget gender biases, can we say there is equity in options.

To my comments on women doctors. I would bet that women were just as likely as men to prefer male doctors back in the 60's when 1 in 10 doctors was a woman. Would there be doubts that women could do the job equally back then? I'm pretty sure there would have been. If you look at which gender of doctor is picked today when given the choice, older men and women both choose male doctors and that bias drops as people get younger. The facts, you are more likely to survive a heart attack if you have a female doctor. But, 60% of people prefer male doctors. Just establishing bias still exists in the world.

As for my comment about the ufc. Ronda Rousey transcended her sport and got women into the ufc. It took a few years for the rest of the sport to catch up, but the woman dubbed "a once in a generation athlete" has been surpassed multiple times in a very short time. Gyms started marketing to women more in the past 10 years and women had a role model to aspire to be. My point, exposure, acceptance, and shifting attitudes have allowed female fighters to significantly close the gap in a very short period of time. Yes, we probably see pay gaps at the top but if you would have guessed women would headline ufc cards 10 years ago most people would have thought you were crazy.

So, mountain biking could be where women's mma was 10 years ago. Your starting to see a lot more women participating. We could wait to see if there is an athlete that transcends the sport or we could push for equity now to see if we can't help that along. How? Could you alternate men and women on the same course with the same broadcasters? Maybe. I don't know the answer, but I don't think we just wait for things to naturally even out. To say men have a head start is a gross understatement of the issues.
  • 12 4
 @JayUpNorth: I like to watch the best in any sport. I like Moto GP over Moto2. I like Formula 1 over Formula whatever else there is. I like the footy and rugby World Cups over domestic league games. If there is a tier below the top tier, I don’t bother with it. I’m just not interested. I have no bias against those competitions or the competitors therein. It doesn’t matter the sex, race, socio-economic class, hairstyle or colour of their clothing. I want to see the thing they are doing being done to the highest level there is. That is the only quality I am looking for.
  • 2 3
 I also wonder how disadvantaged women will be in sport where the status quo has male competitors earning unsustainable amounts? For example in football (soccer), men are earning ridiculous amounts and most people agree it is unsustainable, a salary cap has often been mentioned but never got close to implementation so salaries seem to keep getting higher and higher even if overall revenues aren't matching that growth.
There is no simple way of capping salaries at a sustainable level in the men's game when the sensible level was long since passed.
I feel equivalent sportswomen look at the men's game and want parity, fair enough. However I think people will see the salaries that the majority of female sports stars earn and see an opportunity to create a more sustainable salary structure and stop them ever earning the level that top male stars do. It's something that is arguably needed in all sport but it's much easier to cap something at a level that hasn't yet been reached than at a level that has long since been breached.
  • 3 14
flag enduroNZ (May 11, 2021 at 1:19) (Below Threshold)
 I don’t think you fully understand the concept of equality but then you are probably about 15 so you might learn one day @jaame:
  • 13 1
 @enduroNZ: ha ha yes. Fifteen times three young whippersnapper!
We all interpret these things in our own way I guess. Equality to me means everyone has a fair crack of the whip. We’re all humans, and no one owes anyone a living. People are worth what they make. If someone wants to pay me £100k to do something, I’m worth it. The fact that no one wants to pay a female MTB racer the same as a male MTB racer only goes to prove their values are not the same.
In purist terms, the females are not as good, hence their value as racers is lower. If there is a situation where people are paid for the so-called lifestyle side of the sport, and there are women making more than men, that proves that their value is higher. In racing, it surely is about race results first and foremost. If we’re talking about marketing, out of racing exposure, social media whatever - I think people who bring in the most should be paid the most. That’s only fair. If we’re talking about earnings based on a placing in a race, then you can’t pay someone who does not even compete in the top tier of racing the same as someone who does. By making a separate category there is the admission that a certain group cannot compete on a level playing field. How can that group then expect to have the same respect or pay?
  • 4 1
 @pourquois-pas: Also what is equal work? If race day is pay day, in the XC example, the men race at least plus one lap in both short course and XCO, is that equal work?
In the question about racing the same course, their was strong agreement, but for XC there is no mention of racing the same distance? This is a bit condescending in cycling as in other sports, triathlon, running etc everyone competes over the same distance.
  • 3 7
flag pourquois-pas (May 11, 2021 at 7:39) (Below Threshold)
 @AlanT-NZ: Some of you guys are over thinking this... given the current race environment, which teams can influence but not directly change, they are choosing to pay women riders less for achieving the same results in their class as men who achieve the same results or worse.

Forget equal work definitions.
Arguing about having different classes is moot.

In the racing scene as it exists today there is no reason to not pay a female rider for winning in her sport an equivalent amount as a man who is of the same standing. From a performance perspective.

Brand Ambassadorship, product testing, event attendance, autographing... all that stuff factors into a total pay package, but showing up tot race in your professional class and winning should pay men and women the same as a job.
  • 6 1
 @pourquois-pas: In my (cynical) view the 'work' is selling bikes... Very different work from winning races and it requires a different skillset...
  • 3 4
 @captainian: I don't see a trade team hiring a rider to sell bikes. That's what a brand amabassador agreement represents. A salary to be a trade team rider is about results to get exposure for partners, period. As a racer you do that by getting on the podium.
  • 7 3
 @pourquois-pas: the reason is because the level of achievement derived from winning in the two respective classes is not equal. It’s harder to beat 100 people than it is to beat five.
It’s harder to climb Mt. Everest than it is to climb Kagulu Hill. The value associated with the two feats is not the same, because one is markedly more difficult.
That is why women in sports should be paid less than men, if they are indeed being paid for results. Prize money if you like. Men should get more. An equal slice of the cake maybe, but it’s an equally proportioned slice of a much bigger cake. Because no one cares about women’s racing, because the level is not the same. I’m not saying they are all rubbish. I know those top girls are faster than me (although if I had a year as a full time pro with access to the best trainers and dietitians I doubt there would be many that would be) but the issue is that there are so few of them doing it. There was an article the other day in which the results sheet had at least two classes with only two finishers.
If you’re a fast girl, you only have to finish to get on the podium, because there are only five fast ones! Those five are really fast. That is true.
And talk of “it needs investment and time” is bollocks. If people wanted to watch it they would watch it now. Hit TV shows blow up in a year. People hear about it if it’s worth watching. People are clamouring for the next season. When is the new season out? Oh it’s around Christmas time! Woo!

Everyone who wants to watch it is already watching it. That’s it. Anyone who thinks they are underpaid should change career, and that includes most of the men’s field too!
  • 2 0
 @Blackhat: you're totally right. I just get a little fired up.
  • 2 5
 @jaame: How did you come up with this only the best for me world view? Would you have gotten there without hidden forces in society that push this belief? How many ads have you watched in your lifetime? Do you share views with your parents or peer group? You don't exist in a bubble.
  • 5 2
 @JayUpNorth: Ah, "hidden forces". That sounds like a scientific, testable hypothesis. Not a conspiracy theory at all.

@jaame While abrasive, you do have a few good points. If people wanted to watch womens sports at the same level as mens, they just would. Demand comes first- not supply. Its incredibly hard for a product to be supplied first and then generate demand for it. Its lightning in a bottle- like the Beatles or the first iPod (even then, it could be argued that there was demand for itunes at the time). MMA/UFC came onto the scene 100 years after professional boxing, but its doing just fine and in many ways outcompetes boxing. The hypothesis that the WNBA suffers because the NBA is older doesn't hold water. What might be a reasonable idea is that since the NFL (I'm not sure about the NBA or MLB) is exempt from monopoly laws, and uses government-funded stadiums, AND operates as a non-profit when other leagues can't, makes it very hard for anyone to compete with the NFL, regardless of Gender. I don't think that applies here, even though I'm aware of the corruption and deep political integration of the UCI.
  • 2 7
flag JayUpNorth (May 11, 2021 at 9:38) (Below Threshold)
 @hamncheez: there's a whole field called sociology that exists, you never heard of it? I find it fascinating, and I took 3 courses in it while I did my degree.
  • 2 1
 @Spencermon: We’ll that was unexpected. Kudos.
  • 3 3
 @Blackhat: it happens. I'm no good at online arguments/conversations.

Jaame is not a pleasant person and I don't think that will change. It's just frustrating that he feels that only the fastest matter and that the effort and training don't really matter. The competition between women riders is fierce and their races are entertaining.
  • 4 1
 @Spencermon: What do you mean by "matter"? I think @jaame would agree, he means "profitable". I've said this many times before, but Seths Bike Hacks guy on youtube makes more money than virtually all sponsored racers. If you bring in more money for your sponsors, they will sponsor you more. There isn't some vast conspiracy theory against women. In our culture as well as in our biology, people like to watch mens sports more. To what degree this can be or should be changed is debatable.
  • 2 7
flag JayUpNorth (May 11, 2021 at 10:01) (Below Threshold)
 @hamncheez: "should be changed" you're showing your hand here. Just admit it, you are happy with the status quo.
  • 2 3
 @hamncheez: If everything is based off of money and profit (as you seem to agree is FAIR), then it boils down to "women are slower than men," which is true. So the next logical step is to say that since viewership of mens sports are higher, return on investment is higher, bikes are ridden faster, women shouldn't expect to put in the same amount of work, time and energy and expect to be able to support themselves the way a man would be able to?
To just accept how the world is because that's how we've seen it our whole lives isn't right. There are so many possibilities and things that could be better but aren't because some people can only see things as they have been and can't see how changing things can make them better.

Honestly though, what if women made the exact same as men? That money didn't make the men make any less. what are you afraid of losing?
  • 4 2
 @JayUpNorth: I'm not "happy with the status quo", I just don't want to tell other people how to live their life.

Would you agree that Nordic countries are more egalitarian than the US? Less sexism? More equal opportunity than here? Because in the Nordic countries, women CHOOSE fields like nursing over STEM at a higher rate than in the US. For every male nurse they have 20 female ones. They have fewer female sanitation workers. Fewer female engineers. But more female teachers. There were communes set up in Israel that tried to erase gender roles completely from their societies, but women still gravitated towards certain occupations and men to others, in many cases at a higher rate than they do in the USA.

Saying men and women should prefer one sport over the other is a pretty arrogant thing to say. I made no qualitative judgements. I said it was debatable.
  • 7 1
 @Spencermon: When did I make a qualitative judgement on anything? I said here is the state of the world, and why.

What would be your solution? Have the police go around to ODI grips and Raceface, audit their books, and fine them for not sponsoring any female riders? Or put a tax on all men in a specific industry and give women in that same industry a UBI? Why specific industries, why not all industries? How granular are you going to make this evaluation? Will a man be able to prove they race more, have more viewership, etc, and be able to appeal to a judge that they can accept more income from sponsors? Do you realize what kind of dystopian nightmare that would create? Bike companies would just stop sponsoring riders altogether. And what about Kate Weathery? Would Kate be taxed, or get a UBI?
  • 3 5
 @hamncheez: You don't disagree then?

Also, very nice way to turn my words into a slippery slope fallacy.

Dystopian nightmare indeed.

Our world is a mess. I would just hope that women see a future in a sport that views them as equals and not lesser.
  • 10 1
 @JayUpNorth: I’m happy with the status quo. That is, people choose their own careers. I sell toilets. Some people race bikes for a living. Some of them get paid more than others. That seems only right to me. In fact, since I believe in a meritocratic system, I am more than happy to see women make more money than men, or men to make more money than women. Earnings should (and do I think) correlate with the value of the individual doing the work. As a true liberal I believe in freedom. I don’t discriminate against anyone. These riders are free to choose whether they want to work for the money on offer or not. It makes no difference to me who makes what.
I do think the idea that someone who is the 76th fastest racer in the world thinks she should earn the same as the fastest, simply because she is the fastest racer in the world who happens to have been born with a vagina and two ovaries, is totally misguided. Sexist even. Like I say, I don’t discriminate against any kind of human. If you’re a human and you are not a like for like replacement for that human doing that job, you cannot be considered to be doing equal work and therefore will not command the same salary.
If employers start to care more about other forms of value, then absolutely women deserve what they deserve, which could be more than men. May the best human win!
  • 5 1
 @jaame: Equal pay is earned by providing equal value to sponsors, value is all about exposure for sponsors..
If women created as much exposure for sponsors yet still raced different courses than men, why should they be paid less?
  • 6 2
 @Spencermon: for the record, I am a very pleasant person. I am also a realist and have no problem stating what is obvious to the vast majority of adult humans.
  • 3 1
 @jaame: I will admit that online interactions are difficult to navigate in regards to tone and temperament.

I still feel that there is room for more than one opinion in this argument. But I also feel that everyone has said how they feel and nothing said beyond this will make any difference whatsoever.
  • 2 1
 @jaame: What about chimps? Should they get paid more?

  • 3 1
 @emptybe-er: I agree, they shouldn't be paid less, all things being equal. But its pretty clear male athletes drive more sales than female athletes.

That being said, I like the original comment- why not have the prize money the same? Its not like the UCI is two different organizations, the NBA and WNBA. Its the same thing.

Curious, does anyone know what the prize money is? Is it the same for XCO as DH? What about short track?
  • 7 1
 @pourquois-pas: if you follow this logic, why are different men getting paid different amounts? The dude who came in 50th did the same course as the guy who came 1st. Why shouldn't they get the same pay? If you win in the juniors, why don't they get the same as the winner in elite? I think this "logic" doesn't really work out in reality. It takes away any motivation for improvement when everyone is treated exactly the same regardless of outcomes.
  • 1 1
 @emptybe-er: I agree with you on this, and have stated the same up there^
  • 2 7
flag JayUpNorth (May 11, 2021 at 15:06) (Below Threshold)
 @hamncheez: I'm sorry but I call bullshit. You are overly involved in every comment section when gender differences are discussed. You cherry pick data that maintains the status quo without ever bothering to take a deep dive into the why. I believe you got this latest group of "facts" from a Jordan Peterson argument. You can't erase gender biases in a generation or two. If you look at the biases older men and women have in picking doctors, you see a gradual reduction over time. These people raised people who raised the people that are picking occupations now. If you think some of the older generations biases didn't rub off on the younger ones, then I would say you are wrong. What kind of advice is the young woman getting when she talks about her desire to become a health professional vs what a male would get?

My wife has taken some university in Sweden. They have a lot of programs, including 480 paid maternity/paternity days off with 80% pay that removes some barriers for females. The percentage of graduating female doctors went from just under 41.3% to 43.6% in six years. So, things are improving for women. However, just because barriers have been removed for women does that mean that barriers have been removed for men? Do men see nurse as a career option? Do men see teaching elementary school as an option? Without knowing these biases, the 1 in 20 means nothing. What's your thoughts on male nurses? In Canada males are only 8% of nurses. In the Netherlands it's 1 in 4, Norway it's 1 in 9, and Iceland it's 1 in 100. So, can we stop the bullshit of thinking things are following a natural order and accept that the societies influence has a big impact on these numbers.

If you were a young woman, would you pick a career path with a positive bias or a negative? Would you struggle to prove yourself in a role that goes against gender norms or take the path with less barriers?
  • 6 3
 @JayUpNorth: Please, show me what data I have cherry picked. In other places I have referenced the BLS. Is that cherry picked?

I got my degree in Economics. Well before I ever heard of Jordan Peterson (of whom I am a great admirer). Thomas Sowell tackled the wage gap myth way back in the 1980s.

Discrimination in the workforce has an actual cost you can measure. If I pass up on good candidates because they are Jewish, or a woman, or Black, and hire someone less competent then I'm going to do worse as a business. In order for there to be a conspiracy of discrimination, every single competitive firm in a given industry has to collaborate. Its basic game theory. If a single firm breaks ranks and doesn't discriminate, then they will attract all the "cheap" employees who have been discriminated against and instantly this firm will out compete the others. Its like the Prisoners Dillema. These cartels/conspiracies never last more than a very short while. Thats why the segregationists in the South had to pass Jim Crow laws- employers, even if they themselves were segregationists, couldn't afford to discriminate against Black workers, so they lobbied to have Jim Crow laws passed.

Once again, has I have asked in other threads, please, some evidence, any evidence, of the wage gap? In this sport the evidence is lacking because salaries are hidden and taboo. We have no idea how much Minnaar makes, nor what he contributes to Oneal and Santa Cruz's sales.
  • 3 8
flag JayUpNorth (May 11, 2021 at 16:38) (Below Threshold)
 @hamncheez: u didn't cherry pick your 1 in 20 comment when we have data from other countries that wildy varies? that's 100% cherry picking. Stop acting like some impartial observer when you're a f*cking Jordan Peterson fanboy. Thomas Sowell? Not really suprised you like his work. A black man that believes systematic racism doesn't exist who supported Trump and blames liberals for a lot of problems. Do you also believe systematic racism doesn't exist?
  • 6 3
 @JayUpNorth: Can you define systematic racism? Every country and society today and in the past is racist to some degree. Its part of the human condition. Whether or not there is systematic racism depends on your definition of it.

I didn't "cherry pick" the Nordic example. I use it because its easy for most people to agree its a more egalitarian society than the USA, and less discriminatory. Its also more homogenous, so its a great population to study.

But back to the main point: Can anyone provide me evidence of a gender wage gap? I'm begging you guys. Something. Anything.

Finally, these threads always turn into insults against me. It says much about those hurling the insults.
  • 4 8
flag JayUpNorth (May 11, 2021 at 22:16) (Below Threshold)
 @hamncheez: Let’s be real, you used evidence from Nordic countries because you thought JP used it successfully. There’s so many articles on wage gap issues. Use google. The country that you quote as egalitarian has legislation that ensures that a large wage gap doesn’t exist. It’s weird that regulate something that isn’t a thing. NY Times, college educated women make 90% as much as men at age 25 and by 45 the gap widens to 45%. If you go with your usual less experience because of motherhood argument, how do you manage the mental gymnastics to justify that fields with increasing involvement by women can experience a overall drop in pay. That is a drop in pay for men and women. Society devalues work that they think women can do just as well as men.

As for asking me to define systematic racism. Buy a dictionary, use google, but that’s a stupid f*cking thing to ask. If you don’t know the answer at your age, it’s just not something you care about. You’re just going to shrug and say it’s part of the human condition? Anyway, done with you and your mental gymnastics and denials. I feel like I need to take a shower. I also feel like this is déjà vue from a Pinkbike article about POC.
  • 5 3
 @JayUpNorth: cry me a river, Jay
  • 2 3
 @hamncheez: they obviously don’t have equal exposure, I’m not arguing that. The demand is much smaller for their exposure so that’s the nut to crack.
I enjoy watching women’s dh racing and freeride or whatever more and more as they’re progressing at a much more rapid pace than men.
Imo, mtb has appealed to much higher numbers of men than women due more to societal norms rather than the nature or requirements of the activity.
  • 3 2
 @emptybe-er: I wish my daughter was influenced more by me and less by societal norms in that regard. I’ve done everything I can think of to get her out on her bike with me since she was born. There is literally no interest there from her side, and there never has been, even from before she knew there was such things as girls and boys.
She definitely got pulled into Tarkwondo by her female friends though so there might be something in it, although I am largely cynical of the idea in general that girls do girl stuff because society tells them to.
Also I was in the skatepark the other day in town, and it was full of teenagers. All the boys were BMXing, scootering, skateboarding. All the girls were sitting around the bowls talking. Only one girl was actually partaking in an activity. I commented to my daughter how sad it was that all the boys are actually practicing a skill, and the girls are sitting on their arses watching. Don’t be that kind of girl, I told her. Do something for yourself when you get older. Don’t be a groupie.
  • 2 0
 @jaame: well you originally said women shouldn’t get equal pay unless they’re racing the same course, so I pointed out how it’s actually about exposure and value to the sponsor.
And then farther down you mentioned women shouldn’t be paid as much because they don’t have the same level of competition. I’m not sure if you’ve ever raced but you’re pretty much racing yourself and finding your sustainable limit, regardless of the competition. A race is a race regardless of the number of entries, you’re still gonna go for it. A pro man finding .2 seconds in his dh run to move into the hotseat, try making up 4 seconds to catch Rachel. That’s seems like a slightly more difficult level of competition.
  • 2 0
 @jaame: same here, my daughter isn’t into it. But I also think kids are just getting smarter, they don’t understand why we’d risk breaking a bone for adrenaline. I honestly can’t really argue with her logic and don’t wanna push her, but it bums me out, too. She’s just not aggro, hoping she’ll warm up more to just chill trail rides
  • 2 1
 @JayUpNorth: Why the harsh language?

How did you come up with conclusion that asking about definition for systemic racism is f*cking stupid?

There are clearly different intuitions on defining systemic racism. Some people are leaned to inspect it on bases if all other variables are equal expect the color of skin, will the outcomes be different. Additionally they seem to ask to pinpoint where and how does the systemic racism then play a role. I dont think that thes people denies that there might well be some components where systemic racism is still working. That needs only to be pinpointed and proven to be true so it can be fixed.

The second maybe the most extreme view seems to define systemic racism as in something resulting from past obvious oppressions. If it's active today or not is that important. Wealth gap being one example.

The third way to define the term seems to be that systemic racism is something overarching and subtle, which cannot be really pinpointed or proven but it's certainly true and effecting everything today still
  • 1 0
 @jaame: That’s funny, we were just talking about tkd as well.. she had a friend that took jj so that sparked her interest. I think it’s very natural and healthy for kids to gravitate towards what their peers are doing rather than what their parents think they should enjoy. If she had friends that were into bikes she’d probably be all over it.
Also, I wince when I see kids being dragged out on a long xc ride. Their increased attention span and appreciation for things like pretty views and hero dirt just aren’t there at 10 yrs old. I’m 46 and still failing to appreciate lung busting climbs.
  • 3 1
 @emptybe-er: I never said anything about the same course. My stance always has and always will be, women make less because they aren't as good. When we ostensibly link earnings to race resukts, it stands to reason that the best should make the most. The best are the men between about 19 and 30. Anyone at the top of the top class deserves the most money, assuming they are getting paid for results. Women are not at the top of the top class because they are not even in the top class. They have their own class because they cannot compete at the top of the sport. That's not sexist or anything, it's just logical and rational. Prize money for women should be less because they are performing to a lower level, just like juniors, vets, masters, rippers.
If you're talking about getting paid to train, then I would say that's equal work and they deserve equal pay. They definitely train as hard as the men.
If we're talking about value to a sponsor in terms of exposure or sales revenue generated from social media, whatever... the person bringing in the most revenue deserves the most coin.
Contrtary to what some people seem to think, I'm not sexist or mean. I'm just stating obvious facts.

It does irritate me to constantly read about "we deserve x or y because the men get it and we do the same job". It is so entited. Why did their parents or teachers ever let them believe that they deserve the same as someone else who is demostrably much better at that thing than they are? It is the definition of sexist to state that women will only race women because it's not fair to make them race men... but they do the same job so they deserve the same pay. It's not just sexist, it's ridiculous.

But yeah, I agree with most of what you say.

Let kids be kids, encourage them to do whatever they want and just strive to be the best that they can be, hoping they enjoy the ride.
  • 2 1
 @DylanH93: @DylanH93: Where did I say outcomes don't matter? My response was to the notion that a professional salary isn't paying someone to train it is paying them to get results for the team. That the work element is irrelevant.
  • 2 1
 @jaame: What if the 76th fastest overall racer is the fastest female and she was able to achieve that despite having little to no national body support, had to self fund all training, work a full time job in parallel, constantly be pushed to the back of the start line, dropped in on at the start gate and constantly being told she doesn't belong and can never be good enough? 76th is impressive when you started -200 instead of 0. Your argument is like someone from western culture thinking they're superior to another culture because of their achievements without recognizing the massive head start provided by just being born who you were born to be. That's the privilege thing that is not seen by most of those who hold it and a key reason why there are different classes in sport for experience and gender. Sport is driven by competition but has a deeply ingrained culture of fair play... society has generally accepted it is fair to split genders, your entire argument is based on an imaginary premise where all humans compete with all humans. Sounds idyllic, but it isn't realistic.
  • 4 3
 Why should the prize money be even? There’s two or three girls that have a chance of winning the rest are miles behind compared to the men’s field where there’s 20 guys that could easily win an event. As professional athlete your fighting it out with 20 other guys just to see your potential earnings gifted to someone for just turning up.
  • 2 4
 @Juuhan: It's they way people like him operate. They want a definition so that they can argue about semantics and not get into the real issues. They want to dismiss things on technicalities and whataboutisms. It's insulting to the millions of POC marching in his country to get into these stupid debates. Their previous president literally told a right wing hate group to "stand back and stand by" during the last election. My country has since declared that group a terrorist group. There is overt racism in his country towards people of color, not just subvert. Not playing stupid games with people like him.
  • 2 1
 So the way to encourage more females to compete and increase the size of the competing field is to continue paying them less then the male category?
  • 5 1
 @fatduke: who wants more people to complete? We’ve already got too many mountain bikers as it is of all genders. Have you tried buy tyres recently? We should be discouraging people from getting into mountain biking and convincing people that they’d be better off playing golf.
  • 3 0
 @JayUpNorth: Guess what: I am a POC. My dad came here as an immigrant/refugee. I want you to give me a precise definition because thats what grownups do. Any accusation really boils down to a hypothesis, and for something to really be a hypothesis it needs to be falsifiable. Most "definitions" of systemic racism is intentionally obscure or abstract, and therefore not falsifiable. I don't want you to change your definition as needed, and I want to make sure I don't straw man your position.

So please, what is your definition?
  • 1 1
 @hamncheez: So how come questions only need to be answered one way in this conversation? I've asked you a dozen that you haven't bothered to answer for the most part.

My definition of systematic racism. Is any barrier in life due to color or perhaps culture. From the little things like having your differences pointed out, like black peoples hairs, to "harmless" little jokes. Things that make people aware of their differences. Media coverage of crimes. Negative words like thugs etc are used more often when POC commit crimes than white people. Jail times for similar crimes. If you're white and rape someone you get a shorter sentence because you "come from a good family, and had a bright future". Look up Brock Turner vs Cory Batey. Same crimes different times. Let's talk about school. Funding for schools in areas with more people of colour is less than schools in whiter areas. Less funding equals more unlicensed teachers. Would you expect students taught by unlicensed teachers to score as highly on entry tests? Black students are 3x as likely to get expelled for similar infractions. Black students are considered older looking and more mature and thus get harsher penalties. Black students exit university with more debt. 10% of recently graduated black engineering students are unemployed vs 6% white graduates. Black and Asian job applicants receive more than double the callbacks for interviews if they "whiten" their names. Do I need to keep going? Oh wait, my favourite. Similar drugs with similar effects but separated by class which is a way of targeting POC. Cocaine vs crack penalties. A 5 year minimum for having 5 grams of crack while you needed 500 grams of cocaine to recieve the same sentence. I guess the person with cocaine got to go home and raise their family while the person that used crack gets thrown into the penal system. Fair Sentencing Act.
  • 3 0
 @JayUpNorth: Ok, some of your definition is really solid. Thank you.

"Jail times for similar crimes." is measurable, and yes, black Americans typically get longer sentences than white Americans. There is good evidence for that.

From what I've seen, the differential in rape is the same as the above, more general "jail times for similar crimes". But its not higher than other crimes.

School funding is very complex and more difficult to analize, beucase in the USA ( I don't know much about Canada) there is local, state, and federal funding. Overall, when federal funding is included, schools in poor areas tend to get MORE funding than richer areas. For example, in Washington DC's public schools, there is massive poverty but per pupil spending is the highest in the country, at $30k per pupil per year. However, federal funding comes with all sorts of strings attached that make it much more difficult to effectively spend the money.

"Black students exit university with more debt" this is true, but its a function of affirmative action, where potential students aren't matched to colleges that they are best suited for or can afford best because their admitance process is interfered with.

"10% of recently graduated black engineering students are unemployed vs 6% white graduates" once again, this is because of affirmative action (but still real).

Cocaine is a difficult one, because some "white" drugs like Meth have disproportionate sentencing, just like crack.

Back to your point about systemic racism- I believe you brought it up to discredit Thomas Sowell. You straw-manned him by saying he "doesn't believe in systemic racism". That is not his position. He says that when you control for all relevant factors, a black man raised in a two parent family with access to decent primary education is statistically indistinguishable from a white man raised in the same situation. Now, your chances of being raised in a two parent family when your father is in jail for crack is certainly something worth discussing. But don't try and say what Thomas Sowell believes in if you haven't read lots of his work.
  • 1 2
 @hamncheez: There's too many caveats on Thomas Sowell's position. As an economist are you ready to do a deep dive on what factors lead to a successful marriage? How does double the callbacks after whitewashing names fit into that narrative? Why is there political strife about giving people water while waiting to vote? Is there evidence this disproportionately affects poor people and POC?

Did you know that statistically, POC pay more for interest rates than similarly qualified white people. It's not just getting a job, earning the same amount, it's keeping your fair share of it.

I'm an instructor but I've worked in the trades. I would guess that amongst my class, 30% of white people are significantly racist. I've watched bosses throw out resumes of POC, and been told that "X is one of the good POC". The problem is real dude.
  • 3 0
 @JayUpNorth: Its difficult to say exactly what Sowells position is, as neither of us are Thomas Sowell. However, I haven't ever read any of his statements or professional publications that imply he denies discrimination exists. He says it just isn't a very strong influence when you measure things like income.

I read the "whitewashing names" study when I was in college working on my Economics degree. Its a very interesting study, and a similar thing was done with applying for research positions at universities- the authors of the study sent fake applications to all the top research institutions with the Resumes only varying between "John" and I think "Jane" or some other female name. It has similar results, where even women researchers were less likely to call back female names. However, where it gets really interesting is that when you look at the actual number of hires, there was no disparity. The same with "whitewashing names"; when you control for experience, hours worked, etc, Black Americans do not make disproportionately less income. This area is ripe for more study.

Worse interest rates for Black Americans is called redlining (in the USA), and its been illegal for years. The evidence for it happening now isn't there, or is from very dubious sources. If you're aware of it happening, report the Bank to the SEC and they will be fined.

" amongst my class," is anecdotal, so not really a good measure of what is happening in the eoconomy.
  • 1 1
 @hamncheez: 2019 study by Berkley on mortgage rates. Even a small percent increase to POC must be worth billions and isn't right. As for my experience,yes it is anecdotal, but the numbers of racist people in 2021 is frightening. Perhaps because I am a bald 40 something year old white man people think I am an ally to their racist beliefs. No, I'm just follically challenged.
  • 1 0
 @JayUpNorth: I'll look at that one (the Berkley study); I'm not familiar with it.
  • 60 22
 "In response to the statement ‘I have experienced sexism in the sport of mountain biking,’ the largest contingent of women (35.1%) answered ‘strongly agree,’ while 28.6% responded ‘agree.’

Gents, lets be better.
  • 27 36
flag DylanH93 (May 10, 2021 at 13:49) (Below Threshold)
 Have you seen many examples of that? I've always been extremely impressed by the mtb community. Whether different race or gender, I've legit only seen riders being totally cool to each other. Worst behavior is people talking shit about each other's choice of bike brand or components lol.
  • 17 9
 @DylanH93: I dont believe I have, but ive been riding a long time so its possible my eyes or ears tuned something out, I cannot say for certain.

I am not trying to implicate anyone here, but those numbers are bad, so clearly theres some room for improvement.
  • 100 17

Women: Sexism is real. Discrimination is real.

A Dude Online: Well actually, *I've* never seen that, so
  • 30 5
 @DylanH93: If we go by the comment section of this very article (and many others on this site) sexism is alive and well in the MTB community.
The online community and its reflection of the greater populace and the wall of anonymity that the internet offers is another can of worms, but it's easy to see that there are issues that need more coverage and changes that need to be made.
  • 31 5
 @DylanH93: you ever work in a bike shop and notice how some male customers won't even talk to the female employees about bikes or riding? that's one example I have witnessed, with plenty more...
  • 14 4
 @DylanH93: scroll down... click “below threshold threads are hidden”. Every article about a female racer or anything related to female specific riding activities will inevitably have some sexist kooks who feel the need to comment.
  • 29 4
 @DylanH93: I primarily ride with my girlfriend, and yes, I observe some degree of sexism towards her pretty regularly. I'm not talking about guys being rude to her, but just comments that would never be said to me (male) that are said to her. For example, the amount of times someone has 'given her a tip' is surprising (I put that in quotes because often it is not great advice, and she is often just as good of a rider as they are). Happens at the dirt jumps more frequently. She is an extremely kind person and would never call someone out but it is pretty cringe-y behavior. Just to be clear, I don't think this is a mtb specific issue. I'm just saying the sport is not immune to this type of behavior (which should be surprising to no one).
  • 8 5
 @sjk303: lol I never said it doesn't exist. Sounds like it's quite the issue, I was simply asking what others have seen as I've been incredibly impressed how little I've seen of it. Maybe that's just my area. We should talk about these things instead of attacking anyone trying to discuss the topic. Maybe I'm in a bubble here, what have you seen?
  • 11 5
 @DylanH93: Look at the XC bike checks from the past few days. Various dipshits making sexist comments about the female racers. There are guaranteed to be a couple on any major article about women, even just PB. When was the last time you saw someone commenting about a guy's ass on pb?
  • 4 3
 @SketchyD: very interesting. I do my own maintenance most of the time but I've talked to a couple women in bike shops but they were always cashiers. I'd give anyone a chance in a bike shop, but that said tons of males don't know much either or are more into road than mtb. I have talked to some women on the trails who knew a ton about mtb and you could tell they were bike nerds like myself haha.
  • 6 1
 @Angu58: unfortunately with the anonymous nature of the internet, I really don't see that ever changing tbh. In real life I haven't seen anything like that though. What do you think the solution is here? Those who are already respectful will continue to be respectful, and those who aren't probably won't change either. Sometimes it seems like the best answer is to steer clear of the comment sections on large websites. I also think many specifically do that kind of thing because they know it upsets others and it's a cycle that just keeps progressing. At least real life is generally far more tame.
  • 4 4
 @DylanH93: Completely agreed. I think that a lot of communities, bikes or not, have inherent sexism just because a lot of it is anonymous. Without consequences, people are a*sholes.
But even things you don't think of. When you go into your LBS, how many of the employees are female? And they're almost all cashiers. Of the 3ish shops I frequent, only 1 of them have women working in anything not cashier. And one only has 1 or 2 female employees of probably 14 total.
  • 9 7
 I don’t disagree that SOME men need to be better (the comments section on PinkBike is proof of that) but it really annoys me when you lump us all in together. It’s not me and it’s not anyone I consider a friend.
  • 16 10
 @Tim2: guess it's time to make more friends and find things to do to let people know that what they're doing is not ok. We're all glad it's not you, but complacency with your own righteousness won't solve anything. be active in rooting out the issue.
  • 5 1
 @Angu58: But do they not work there because they have no interest in the industry or because men are a bunch of sexist a#$%holes.

I think as a population men especially 15-25 are high risk takers and therefore drawn to our sport.

I do agree there should be equal pay etc... but perhaps the reasons are simpler than guys are jerks.

Also, some people take offense to mansplaining, that alone could be considered discrimination(we dont mansplain to other men). so perhaps a deeper dive into some of the reasons for their feelings are in order.
  • 8 17
flag DarrellW (May 10, 2021 at 15:50) (Below Threshold)
 That sexism could be from other women. Women are frequently criticised about their appearance, but that's mostly by other women.
  • 12 4
 @coast2coast-4: Don't mansplain mansplaining to us.
  • 9 2
 @DarrellW: Based on your previous comment I think some explanation of some core concepts might be needed.
  • 16 9
 @Spencermon: Ok SJW. I’m not who you were replying to, but I think I speak for many when I say I’ve got other shit to do than worry about finding new friends to correct. You do you, I’ll do me.
  • 9 2
 @Spencermon: My righteousness you say? Try hypocritical on for size…

If your standard of required behaviour to be a good person is to actively seek out other people doing the wrong thing and try and change their minds/behaviour then I suggest you’ve just lumped 99% of the male population in as ‘sub-standard humans’.

I personally prefer to limit my concerns to my family and friends who are more likely to be influenced by a discussion I have with them. If more people did even that much, this problem and many other would be greatly reduced.

None of that is to take away from people who campaign widely on sexism and other issues but as far as I’m concerned that’s not the required standard, just to be ‘part of the solution’.
  • 5 4
 The problem is if we all interact with a few female mountain bikers it only takes a few of us being assholes to make those numbers. Now I have no doubt it's much worse than that - some women ignore it, some women have much more than a single experience, and these women tend to work with core members of the industry who can likely impact them meaningfully - but frankly I'm surprised it's not higher given how broad the question is.
  • 1 0
 @sjk303: is the point you are making that each person had a unique perspective and it should be respected and their feelings validated? Cause that’s what I am hearing you say.
  • 3 0
 @Angu58: “Without consequences, people are a*sholes.” What you really mean is - Some people are a*sholes, with consequences we can sometimes make them act like decent humans.
  • 3 7
flag Juuhan (May 10, 2021 at 22:56) (Below Threshold)
 @coast2coast-4: Giving a tip is sexist? And if it was other way around, males tipping more males, how would you category that situation?
  • 3 1
 @DarrellW: on the STW forum there was a post that basically showed Amanda Battyms new Canyon bike and basically said that she was on the wrong sized bike (and implied that as a girl she wouldn’t know better) and how pretty she is. When was the last time an article about a new male rider started. With implying they were on the wrong size?

And there is rarely an article/press release about Emily Batty that doesn’t have someone commenting on how pretty she is, ‘nice bum’, something about her make up, etc.
  • 2 0
 Up vote @sjk303:
  • 6 6
 @CustardCountry: Looks are a box to tick. Another string to your bow. That’s what I tell my daughter. Strive to be the best you that you can be. Try hard at school, give it your all. I want you to go to university and chase a great career that you are passionate about. If you want to be rich, make it so. Also, being good looking and healthy helps. People who meet you in any situation are looking for certain qualities when they assess whether they want to befriend/date/know/employ you. Being good looking is one box of many that will increase your social value and make your dreams more likely to become a reality. So do not focus on looks, but understand that good looks will help you to get where you want to go in life. If you’re awesome at everything you do, you’re going to be competing with other people who are awesome at what they do. All other things being equal, if you’re also good looking, healthy, fit, you’re putting yourself above someone else who has everything you have except those things. Like it or not, physical attractiveness is a valuable commodity. It is one among many. It should not be elevated to a status higher than its value, but should also not be discounted.
  • 3 0
 @DylanH93: It will change if we do not tolerate it and call it out, neg propped to oblivion or not.
  • 5 7
 @jaame: you are gross and shouldn't be a father.
  • 2 3
 @CustardCountry: we all know Emily Batty is asking for it. Just STOP! ✋
  • 4 0
 @Juuhan: Yes, unsolicited advice can come off as patronizing. When perpetrated towards women in far greater amounts compared to men, I would consider it sexist behavior.
  • 3 1
 @dfsnz: Unfortunately, he is correct.

There have been many wage studies studies and the bottom line was attractive people make more money. it sucks but I think it is left overs of our evolution. Our lizard brain sees what we call attractive people as Healthy and good for making healthy babies.

It is absolutely not fair. We should be judged equally on our effort, knowledge, education etc...but until we evolve past this?????
  • 5 1
 @coast2coast-4: I am a female rider, in the amateur game for 20yrs and that has never happened to me. I’m not discrediting the experiences of my peers, but not all female riders are experiencing sexist behavior from their male counterparts on the regular. If I have someone treat me poorly or say something negative to me (on trail or in life), I attribute it to THEM being an As*hole...not iron clad evidence of systemic, dude bro masculinity gone a muck.
  • 3 1
 @Birdr2: I'm glad that has been your experience. I can only speak to my experience and what I've witnessed riding with my girlfriend. This would corroborate what we see in this survey anyways. Based on this select group of female riders in this sport, some have not experienced sexism, but the majority have.
  • 2 0
 @Reno233: in my comment, it specifically shows I was replying to Tim.
Though I guess my reply also is really easy to twist to mean something other than what I intended. Online comment sections aren't really the place where anyone changes opinion. What I was trying to get at was that it helps to get to know people and become friends with them in the real world. You can't really change a strangers opinion and would have no reason to. but get to know them and ride with them.
  • 4 1
 @Tim2: You are probably a great person and doing good things for the MTB community.

I only get a little too fired up when people use the "not all men" argument that you used. All it does is detract from the issue at hand (the problems that women face within the cycling and MTB community) and changes the subject to You and how You are not part of the problem. So now instead of talking about how to come together to fix the problem, we're talking about how You aren't part of the problem.

If more people did call out sexism when they saw it, you're right. the problem would be greatly reduced.

"If your standard of required behaviour to be a good person is to actively seek out other people doing the wrong thing and try and change their minds/behaviour then I suggest you’ve just lumped 99% of the male population in as ‘sub-standard humans’."

That's a bleak view on humanity, but if no one does anything, then what? If I see something I know is wrong, but I don't know the person, should I ignore it? I would like to see cycling be a better place for not only my friends but everyone.

I hope this isn't coming across as an attack or anything. comment sections are the worst for this and I'm no good at typing coherently.
  • 4 1
 @Spencermon: You make some really good points there and the ‘not all men’ is certainly a divisive issue that can be used just to deflect from the real issue.

Having said that, I still feel that it is important not to make a mass generalization that aims to shame men into ‘being better’. To my mind that creates a situation where men who are doing good things, despite not being leading campaigners on the issue, are left feeling like they are being told their efforts aren’t enough or that we are ‘part of the problem’. That can have a negative impact on engaging people to do more in a positive way.
  • 2 4
 @Tim2: Boys will be boys!
  • 1 0
 @Tim2: that's fair
  • 33 2
 It will be interesting to look at this longitudinally, that is if you plan to do it again, and see if there are changes over the next few years. Great work on this. It is very interesting and well put together.
  • 42 3
 I completely agree! We hope to make it an annual thing.
  • 2 2
 @snl1200 @alicialeggett That's a great idea. Longitudinal follow up would be both interesting and also helpful for developing women's MTB more!
  • 19 1
 Can we see the data on the fanbase/Viewership/product endorsement ROI for Men's VS Women's Racing?
  • 6 5
 I really don't care if it is men or women, all I care about is watching competitive racing.
There have been plenty of bangers in the ladies WC recently, more so when Rach and PomPom have been out of action.
I think a more even split of the money and a wider field will help with competitiveness long term, this will lead to way more competitive racing every World Cup weekend... Women's field wins, viewers/fans win, sponsors win as more ladies get into the sport and spend money... Everyone is a winner!
  • 16 4
 @paulmurphy1989: pretty sure you are in the minority my brother, the amount of women that compete in sports is small the amount of women that want to watch women compete in sports it's pretty small the amount of men that want to watch women compete in sports is even smaller so you are just diminishing your returns at this point
  • 7 16
flag paulmurphy1989 (May 10, 2021 at 14:39) (Below Threshold)
 @preach: Watching DH how would you know it is a guy or a girl on the bike if it wasn't for the odd pony tail?

My point is I watch for competitive racing, not because it is a guy or girl doing the racing. The big downer for me at the minute is the women's field is very small and not too competitive but I am realistic to get a competitive field you need wider long term investment.

Yup the amount of women racing is less but again that is due to a lack of investment Vs men. That is why investment is key, show ladies there is a legit pathway to a worthwhile career.

Look at the Olympic track cycling as a bit of an example, anyone who is interested in track cycling will quite happily sit and watch either men's or ladies races as the quality of the field is there and it is competitive. As it is an Olympic discipline it has had massive investment in many of the big countries resulting in entertaining racing.

Also, you are missing out a key opportunity for businesses. Health and fitness, cycling in particular, is booming this is new money and it is coming from non traditional sources so now is the time to try to make some of that money stay around and grow.

I would agree though that there are still plenty of swamp dwellers out there who only want to see girls riding bikes if it is on the way to a dodgy producers black pleather couch for an on film audition, but f those guys
  • 18 2
 @paulmurphy1989: "Watching DH how would you know it is a guy or a girl on the bike if it wasn't for the odd pony tail?" Really? Let's keep it objective here.
  • 2 12
flag paulmurphy1989 (May 10, 2021 at 15:14) (Below Threshold)
 @BenPea: Two riders of same skill level and speed, dressed the same how could you tell the difference?
  • 9 1
 @paulmurphy1989: or watching the times and amplitude on the jumps/ gaps/ drops

C'mon let's keep it academic not subjective
  • 16 3
 @preach: I have no interest in watching the 90th placed male rider for the same reason I don't want to watch the females. They just aren't as skillful or as fast as the top male riders. Ratings would suggest I am not alone.
  • 9 1
 @paulmurphy1989: You couldn't, but there isn't a single woman/girl at a world cup near the same skill or speed of any dude on the live feed.
  • 11 2
 @paulmurphy1989: I hesitate to reply because I don't want to seem like some sexist jerk. But... "Two riders of same skill level and speed, dressed the same how could you tell the difference?".

How would that be a fair comparison?

For instance I have to pick the 44rth fastest male rider to match the same time as the top female rider at the Tennessee National Enduro. About 23:56. Top male was 19 minutes and something.

DH you have to pick the 41st male rider to match the same time as the top female rider. Now the time difference isn't as bad here, only about 30 seconds off. BUT 30 seconds out of a 2.5 minute run is a HUGE difference...

So if you had the 44th best male and the 1st/top female rider dressed the same, (and lets say they had similar body types/bike sizes, etc.), then I agree it would probably be hard to tell them apart.

But take the top male and top female runs and watch them back to back and your gonna see the difference!

Heck, take the top male and the 40th male rider and your gonna see the difference!
  • 7 2
 @paulmurphy1989: Would you think it was fair for the 41st/44th Male rider to make the same money/have the same sponsorship deals as the top/fastest #1 Male rider?
  • 5 3
 @stiingya: There is a speed difference between men and female and probably always will be (given this is the case in every other cycling discipline). My point about not telling the difference was in response to a previous comment people are not interested in watching women's sport - I was highlighting that if the skill, speed + competition is there gender is irrelevant as you wouldn't be able to tell much difference. I don't disagree that right now for most of the women's field this is not the case, infact this comes back to my point about investment!
So long as the investment in women's riding is comparatively tiny Vs mens then that performance gap is only going to grow further. Additional investment would help close the gap and lead to more quality races for us all to watch.

Re. 41/44th male rider earning same as the top rider obviously that is not fair. But why should the #1 female not earn the same as the #1 male, they did the same course they beat all their competition, they got coverage for their sponsors across the media (the main thing they get paid for).

How about this...
Think about when rampage started...
Barely anyone did it, the riding was not great in comparison and the money was not great.
If the money + media/sponsor focus had stayed the same it would never be at the level we are at today!
It has taken over a decade of hefty funding and progression to get it to this high level.
Similarly, in women's MTB more funding and a more equal distribution of the cake is going to help push development in that category on so that in 10 years time we all tune in to watch 2 amazing races each race weekend!
  • 3 0
 @paulmurphy1989: It'll come down to every boy and girl born from here on in being treated in a non-gendered way. Maybe after a generation or two or three, the same number of people of each sex will become involved in MTB and go on to race, and the male and female mtb markets will be of a similar size and generate the same turnover for companies. Only then will investment in various facets of mountain biking be at the same level for men and women. But that's a big maybe that relies in part on untainted female and male brains being drawn to the same activities and in part on a monumental feat of sociological engineering that would require a clearly unrealistic level of progressive thinking by the entire population of the world over several decades. Essentially it would require the universal elimination of gender bias by our species.
  • 1 1
 @BenPea: you must not watch that much DH?!
  • 2 0
 @Birdr2: why do you say that?
  • 2 2
 @BenPea: I'm being sarcastic.

You wrote that one can barely tell the difference between a male or female DH world cup performance if there isn't a pony tail hanging out the back of a helmet. If the pony tail is the only thing indicating to you that rider is a biological female vs male, then you are not a very keen observer of the sport is my point.

"Objectively", the difference in riding performance between the top 10 men and women in the world is easily observable in body position, their dynamic movement, strength, power, etc. and 100% stop watch quantifiable.
  • 3 0
 @Birdr2: That wasn't me, that was the guy I replied to. You've just said exactly what I believe.
  • 3 2
 @paulmurphy1989: It's not just that they are faster, it's everything they do during the race that makes them faster. It's not like were talking about a velodrome where riders are just riding around in circles as fast as they can - watts VS weight and aerodynamics.

You get the same difference between the top Women racer and the 40th women racer. It's not just a question of gender it's a question of performance. The highest performing racers are the most fun to watch and I think get the highest ROI for their sponsors.

Your other points don't detract from the OP's original point, "Can we see the data on the fanbase/Viewership/product endorsement ROI for Men's VS Women's Racing?". Your inferring that the people paying the racers are getting the same return on their investment but just not paying females their fair share. Can you show that?

Let's not pretend people riding in Rampage are being appropriately compensated for the risk they are taking. I mean maybe a couple now and then depending on their current sponsor? But most are taking a HUGE risk they might get injured, end up with huge bills and not being able to ride and continue to make money riding. ALSO, I'd argue Rampage was WAY COOLER when it started.

BUT I totally agree that investment in Women's MTB will grow Women's MTB. I think we've been seeing that, and I think sponsors see the future of that investment and are making it. BUT not at the expense of making money TODAY.
  • 2 0
 @stiingya: On a similar note, I haven't seen the data so take this with a grain of salt, but I have heard industry people say that women racers and race results by women, in general do not translate into bikes being sold to women. The return is just not there. That's why you are seeing more and more sponsorships going to women selling a "lifestyle".

I have no idea whether the majority of people commenting on this thread are predominantly male or a mix, but it definitely smells like a bunch of woke males mansplaining why female racers deserve to be paid for something that provides no ROI to the BUSINESSES forking out the cash. Just because race results sell bikes to men, doesn't mean it sells to women.
  • 14 1
 Professional athletes "pay" is getting over simplified in this article. There's a few sources of income and financial support that combine to build "pay". Bike/equipment/apparel etc. sponsors, race/event prize money and support from national team's budgets (public/tax funded) are the 3 categories that I can think of. These all come from different sources with different economic/business drivers. Pro athletes can find other sources too like coaching or YouTube videos. It's easy to say that everyone should be paid fairly but it's quite difficult in reality.
  • 16 2
 Do WNBA players get paid the same as NBA players?
  • 14 0
 Thats the beauty in a CBA, it simplifies things into relative terms. The players pay, as an entire group (union) is based on total league revenue. WNBA and NBA are supposed to both be 50% shortly (2021 projections for WNBA). Which means they are getting paid the same in relative terms. If they want the same total dollars, they have to help the league grow to that level.

There is no CBA in MTB, and its not even reasonable to consider it because the riders are primarily paid by sponsors, all of whom have different revenues and different allocations to athletes vs. other marketing.
  • 6 0
 @bikeparkmemes: good point. The revenue streams are so different that it makes a comparison basically meaningless. For basketball, viewers means more ad revenue for teams which pay the athletes more. In MTB the athletes are directly sponsored by the companies selling products, and I would guess that race revenue is minor.
  • 3 1
 Why is this argument all over this article about mountain biking at all?

Is the WNBA in any way relevant to mountain biking other than they are both sports?

Women's gymnastics probably pays better than men's gymnastics I would imagine, if that is the case does that mean the men who race mountain bikes should make less money than the women?

The question, if you are going to bring up the WNBA vs the NBA shouldn't be about whether the women make less money, as they obviously do, but why women's sports are so often paid so much worse than men's (if they even have a visible league at all). Sporting events are good to watch when they are close and unpredictable. The quality of the athletes isn't actually that important as long as they are close in skill level, see the popularity of high school and college sports in the USA or the marble racing channel on youtube with millions of views, the owner of which is probably making more money than any of the women in this survey. Women's sports have been deemed to be a lower class of sports across the board despite some of the best rivalries and competitions happening there.
  • 19 9
 How much IG followers top 10 DH women have combined compared to men?

Answer that question and there is your reason why women get payed less.

You CAN'T get equal pay unless you offer something equal in exchange.

You're selling yourself (bike skills, social media exposure, podiums, bike development knowledge) in exchange for money.

"75% of Women Would Support Legislation to Diversity Teams" - What is stopping you from making a woman only DH team that would pay women the same as men if not more?
  • 18 6
 Amaury Pierron: 130k
Myriam Nicole: 161k
Rachel Atherton: 304k

Your argument makes no sense. The women are already offering something equal, if not more, considering the adversity they have to fight to move through those ranks.
  • 11 1
 @Greghoin: a whack of randomly selected others for comparison.

Gwin: 445k
Minaar: 288k
Brosnan: 248k
Semenuk: 580k
Fairclough: 366k
Seagrave (Tahnee): 374k
Batty: 347k
Ravanel: 38k
Courtney: 501k
Neff: 350k
Schurter: 597k

Seems more related to who is most active on IG than anything else
  • 4 0
 Should also be pointed out that absolute number of followers is not as important as number of comments/likes/active interactions and posts. Listen to the Downtime Podcast with Rich Houseman for a good insight on the inner workings of social media and mountain bike sponsorships.
  • 3 1

Wibmer: 2 mil
Macaskill: 1.7 mil

Ferrand-Prevot: 425k

Not sure if this really adds anything to the argument/discussion but I was curious about the trials wizards and the xc phenom and wasn’t really surprised by the results
  • 18 8
 It would be pretty cool if women would make as much money as the men in mountainbiking. But sadly the companies don't have endless money and have to think about return on investment.
  • 20 11
 I counter your evidence free opinion with another one. Since there are fewer women mountain bikers, there is a larger market of potential new riders who might closer identify with a woman athlete. Therefore a woman could provide a much greater return on the same investment since they might sell more bikes to new riders than a similar cost male pro. It may or may not be true, but without evidence either way, it is just as good as your opinion.
  • 9 7
 @mtb-thetown: NBA finals average 20 million viewers per game. WNBA? 400,000. Thats about a 50 fold difference. Both men and women prefer to watch mens sports. I'm not sure this is something that can be easily changed.
  • 3 9
flag mtb-thetown (May 10, 2021 at 16:36) (Below Threshold)
 @hamncheez: I don't see how that statistic has any relevance to this discussion. Whether a $50k investment in a pro female mountain biker or a $50k investment in a pro male mountain biker leads to more revenue, mostly through bike sales, is the question. I don't care how many viewers there are if I am a bike brand sponsoring someone, I care how many of those viewers buy one of my bikes. Those numbers are not necessarily related, and even if they are it is not a direct correlation.

Also, there are plenty of companies that decide to advertise in WNBA games, even though there are fewer viewers. Those viewers may be more likely to buy something from a sponsor, and the sponsorship costs less, so it may be a better return on (a smaller) investment.
  • 8 2
 @mtb-thetown: Thats a lot of speculation. Its easy to speculate when you aren't spending your own money. All these bike, component, and accessory companies seem to think top male riders are the most effective salesmen. If any one of them broke ranks, and only sponsored female riders, they could save hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. Think- if women really did sell bike stuff at the same rate, then just sponsor ALL the top women and pay them maybe 10% more than now- and you'd save an amazing amount of money. You'd out-compete everyone else. Why doesn't this happen?

Why don't you start a bike company or UCI racing team and only sponsor female athletes?
  • 2 1
 You say that but all bikes everywhere seem to be sold out...
Look at the numbers between the value of MTB worldwide Vs pay of professional athletes (both male and female) it is ridiculously tiny, they could easily afford it they just don't want to.
  • 2 1
 @hamncheez: there was an all female Evian team before I think. I wonder what happened to that, in terms of whether or not it was considered a success at the end of its term.
  • 9 1
 The truth is that the field in women's DH and Enduro is not deep enough and needs to be developed. The top women are amazing, but then there's a huge gulf between them and the up and comers.

I speculate that it may take an even broader cultural shift in our society to fix this. And that may be happening, but it's slow. Women, from a young age, are told to be careful; are told to avoid danger; are kind of guided in to these gender rolls that boys are not. Boys are often encouraged to test their limits, to try dangerous activities, and then their peer groups help reinforce that behavior.

DH and Enduro at the highest level are dangerous, and really require the ability to push those limits. If you've been conditioned your whole life to avoid that danger, that fundamental hurdle is going to reduce the number of people competing.
  • 3 0
 gender roles*! caught that late
  • 2 1
 I was about to post a very similar thought. Sports like mountain biking, especially DH and enduro can be brutal. Most women I know look at something like DH and think it’s crazy. They see full face helmets, the bumps, bruises, broken bones, the crashes, etc and say no way.

This goes for most action sports really. Female skateboarders? BMXers? Are there any that are anywhere near what men are doing? There are some great female skiers and snowboarders but go to any mountains terrain park and it’s still 90% men. Even though they are capable the vast majority of women just aren’t willing to take the physical abuse these sports often require.
  • 4 1
 @sino428: naah, let's not to have nuanced discussion. Unequal outcomes proves discrimination, that's the epistemology in fashion today. Not so that we have reached saturation on how many females ride MTB or DH but expecting ever arriving anywhere near to a 50/50 split is likely to require some serious genetic engineering and hormone shots.
  • 2 1
 @Juuhan: it really does seem like the conversations we have these days have losed all nuance and anyone getting into the details is labeled as "bad". You can take any group of people and divide them up by an arbitrary characteristic and you'll find one side of the room isn't equal to the other. And we have certain characteristics we love to spend all our time focused on. It's not even about equality anymore but equity and I don't think that will work out well in the long run.
  • 19 10
 I want equality! Lets get rid of Men or Women and such and make it a one field winner takes all, everyone then has a chance to be paid the same. You know equally and such, unless they are not equal?
  • 10 0
 Who actually signs the paychecks? It would be interesting to hear from them on why they pay less.
  • 3 6
 i agree, isn't the point of sponsoring an athlete to get people to buy your products? women like mountain biking too.. surprising i know
  • 5 0
 I completely get them wanting to be on the same course. It’s helpful being able to compare and push yourself. They surely could work the smaller jumps idea in too by just having other routes that cause a slight time penalty but smaller jumps. They do that in other sports for men/women/pro/am and it works quite well.
  • 2 0
 Be interesting to see the answers to this question by discipline. My gut tells me the non-race athlete answers are skewing the data. But maybe it is a factor in DH too...
  • 2 1
 In DH, aren't there always "B" lines? Wasn't that how Valentina Holl broke her ankle- the only woman to try and take the "A" line in the mud when even most of the men were skipping it?
  • 8 1
 "For starters I don’t get paid at all and I’m sure they would rather look at paying a male over me first."
  • 6 6
 No one owes anyone a living. If you want to get paid, become a banker!
  • 4 0
 IMO prize money should be the same for first. I think the men deserve a larger overall purse though since the men’s field is deeper. I mean that won’t change the pay gap much at all since prize money is a fraction compared to sponsor money but I think it makes sense to have the prize be the same. Sponsorship money will never really be fair though for the reasons stated above.
  • 3 2
 On the other hand, is the men's field deeper because there is the opportunity to earn enough money to make a living racing for so many more riders?

It is far harder for a woman to break into the paying positions of mountain bike competition as there are literally 11 women across all disciplines of mountain biking who were surveyed who make over $50k US. When you have to travel all over the world for your job that is really only just enough to get by, the rest of those 77 women are supported riders, not really making a living purely from mountain biking, most of them likely need some form of additional income.

Having to be one of the top 5 best in the world at something before you can even make it your full time job without family supporting you means that it is incredibly hard for new, up and coming riders to climb the ladder. Thats why we see the same women on the podium week in, week out as they are the ones who have crested that climb and made those sacrifices to be able to make it their full time job, train every day, have the right coaches etc. If you are someone who rides hard whenever you can but has to support that with a regular job you dont really have a chance of catching up, they will always be one step ahead.

Mandating teams to have a woman rider on the roster and pay them a decent wage would give us better women's racing as it would massively improve the strength in depth of the field and that would make paying those women properly a much easier prospect for the teams as they would be delivering more value to the brands.
  • 2 0
 @Patrick9-32: yeah could be a bit of a chicken or the egg question
  • 8 4
 Let’s imagine there is a person on a stage. They asks a question to the women in the audience and wants them to come up and give a response.

But then you see a bunch of men rush up to the stage to give their thoughts on the question and how they think women would feel.

That’s what this comment section looks like.
  • 3 2
 BuT THe WNbA vs tHE nBA?!??!!
  • 2 1
 The comment sections have been like this on every article based on the rider survey; PB commenters commenting their opinions. It's not specific to the women's survey article.
  • 3 0
 "The chart and comments above represent all the responses except one, which came from the only rider to tell us they make more than $500k per year from mountain biking."

That's why most wage comparisons use median and percentiles to paint a more accurate picture and isolate outliers.

This is exactly right: "Brands that hire racers to sell things will always be somewhat at odds with racers who feel their only job is to compete, regardless of gender."
  • 4 1
 This has been a great series. Thanks for this PB.

Living in Japan would possibly shock many people at how far down the road many 'western' countries actually are regarding their views of gender and roles within society. There is much, much further to go across a whole range of issues in countries where few or non of us live.

Personally I have been an avid thinker for decades about social issues, and I keep coming back to one key question.

Should the (insert industry here , in this case the MTB industry) be focused on equality of outcomes in metrics associated with gender?

I have read up about this for a few years, and if anyone is interested in finding out more about gender pay gaps (and how difficult it is to get everyone on the same page!!!), then here is a really insightful link to help out.

This is a report on gender pay gaps based on data from the US Labour Department from 2007.

The conclusion of the report is that there is a likely gender pay gap that cannot be accounted for by other factors of between 4.8 and 7.1% (if anyone wants to argue the point, please read the report first), and that (and this is the depressing quote)

"..... it is not possible now, and doubtless will never be possible, to determine reliably whether any portion of the observed gender wage gap is not attributable to factors that compensate women and men differently on socially acceptable bases, and hence can confidently be attributed to overt discrimination against women. In addition, at a practical level, the complex combination of factors that collectively determine the wages paid to different individuals makes the formulation of policy that will reliably redress any overt discrimination that does exist a task that is, at least, daunting and, more likely, unachievable."

Which suggests that there is a need for yet more proactive policy making on the part of those in the MTB industry with the power to make decisions in order to "level the playing field".

Good luck everyone.
  • 3 0
 It seems like top 5% of riders make equal pay regrdless of gender. For men that is the top 30, for women its top 5 if there are 300 men in a category and 50 women in the category. I could be wrong but is that not roughly the amount of racers in each category?
  • 18 13
 I hope some of the d0uchebags who regularly post on here about the looks of women notice the feedback from this survey.
  • 21 24
 Yeah because men absolutely should not ever look at women in terms of physical attractiveness. That would be wrong, and so outdated.
  • 9 4
 @jaame: I think it's less about thinking that x is better looking than y, and more about how the comment section ends up looking like something off pornhub.
  • 6 5
 @Clarkeh: oh right does it? Ha ha. I hadn’t noticed that.
  • 4 1
 @jaame: You've never clicked on below threshold for (insert good looking female riders name here)'s article's?
  • 6 1
 @pourquois-pas said 'post', @jaame said 'look'. Posting/talking publicly about another person often has a different impact than looking at another person. With the exception of staring or otherwise being a creep, many people find being looked at ok. Feeling entitled to have a conversation over that person's head, about that person's body you looked at, is different right? Many people find being the object of that behavior not ok. And some people, for example some other women, have said they don't like it even when some other person with whom they identify is the object of that behavior.

It's a little complicated, but it's not too hard for anyone here. Mountain bikers are very capable people
  • 4 4
 @Clarkeh: I haven’t no. I will have a look tomorrow maybe.
  • 3 0
 @jaame: Sure but posting it in the comments section using vulgar or sexist terms isn’t exactly classy behaviour now is it?
  • 5 1
 @jaame: Men really need to get over this.

Obviously there's physical attraction between humans - in both directions. I've overheard my wife and her friends swooning over so-and-so as much or more than my guy friends when they get together. That's life and completely opposite of the issue I tried to raise.
  • 4 4
 @Snfoilhat: Some people just refuse to try to see the world through the eyes of others. Votes on my comment prove there are at least 6 absolute douchebag pricks voting on this comment.

Here it is in black and white from women riders. Not some woke dude preachin' to ya and you still don't care.
  • 4 2
 Do entry fees cost different between men and women racers? Do the costs of competition differ between sex's? Like as in the cost of equipment, travel, lodging, insurance, mechanic's, etc. I feel like costs are probably the same for a given athlete, for example does it cost Scott more or less money to send Nino and Kate to the same race if they originate at the same departure location. Does it cost the same to enter those athletes into a race. These races aren't free to enter and someone is paying money to race in them.
  • 3 1
 I would really like to know who they asked. The pay data has to be skewed due to NDA's and pay. I bet if the higher paid were allowed to talk then the pay gap would be even bigger. What is seen as a value in the women side needs to be re-evaluated massively.
  • 5 3
 I was fortunate to go to a small college with D1 hockey, which means we'd show up to an empty stadium and watch our women's team who would go on to win the frozen 4 absolutely crush it. Yes the men threw bigger hits(you can't check in women's) and we're faster skaters, but the ladies had amazing stick and pick work. They couldn't lay out the guy who had the puck to take it. They had to sneak in, take it, and hold onto it, damn impressive stuff. We honestly enjoyed them more because of the finesse vs the smash into everything that the men offered.

The ladies need to be given the coverage to shine
  • 2 0
 I totally agree with equal pay for equal work. However, the "work" when it comes to any racing discipline is selling, much to the disapproval of any racer ever, but that is how this works. In the case of MTB racing, that means selling viewership, bikes, and whatever other products a sponsor is trying to sell to the general MTB public. Those who sell the most have the most value. That is true of any sales roll in any industry.

Results, self-branding, and relating to the consumers spending the money are how a racer becomes a good salesperson. I think the racing bodies and industry need to make sure the same avenues are open to women to achieve those things, but then it is up to the individual to make themselves valuable, IMO. Nobody should be paid less for doing the same, but nobody should be paid the same for achieving less, either.

Now, perhaps a legit sexist pay gap is real. I don't know. I can hypothesize all I want, but I can't claim that women racers have less influence over sales development than their male counterparts as I don't have access to that kind of data. But if that does exist, the better strategy might be to examine what variables drive that influence disparity and see what can be done to remove such obstacles if possible to allow those racers to improve their value.
  • 2 0
 If you making just a few 1000$ per year in mountainbiking, you are not a pro. Your skills may be on pro level, you might be as fast as a pro, but you cant live from it. And even if you somehow manage to live from this money (which is allmost impossible in nearly any western country) this is not a job perspective.... at all.
  • 3 1
 @crysvb: @jaame has gone too far the other saying they do not do the same job but to say why shouldn't they get equal pay to me is too far in the other direction. What they get paid will depend on what money they can help generate. They are doing the same job but when it comes down to it, currently the men are the pinnacle of the sport. For example the worlds top female sprinter is the top of her field, the worlds top male sprinter is the top of his field but is also the fastest human on the planet. That obviously will generate more interest. It's a really difficult subject to filter out the reasons for pay differences but I believe as a general rule these businesses first and foremost are in the money making business. They pay people dependent on what money, exposure they can generate. I watch both Male and Female DH and enjoy them both but the mens is still the pinnacle of the sport.
  • 2 0
 Hey @alicialeggett - please ask the Pinkbike editors to decide whether between sentence case and title case for headlines.
Sentence case is the correct answer (it's easier to read), but this article has both throughout.
A mildly upset sub-editor.
  • 2 0
 An interesting analysis (and one I'd suspect that some of the big brands have done) relates to which athletes actually influence sales. And that is probably related to the demographics of who buys MTB related products. Pay for race results should clearly be equalized, but it's not quite as clear when it comes to endorsements and other parts of the racers' compensation packages. That ultimately needs to be tied to "bottom line results" and their impact on sales and brand awareness.
  • 4 2
 Does anyone here have a female partner who rides? Did she buy her bike for herself or is she riding your hand me down/ a bike you bought for her so she would get out with you? Does she watch professional MTB racing and content like pinkbike, gmbn etc. How much money does she spend on bike stuff and content compared to you? Sometimes I forget that professional athletes are meat filled pieces of a marketing budget. If I were in charge of advertising for a brand I would prefer to advertise to the market who are the most interested and spend the most per capita. After thinking about my questions who is that market and who is not that market?
  • 1 0
 - Yes - wife.
- She buys her own bikes.
- She watches races, but less than I do.
- She's not on PB (thank f*ck lol).
- She watches Friday Fails and Saturday sends though Wink
- She consumes less mtb media than I do, admittedly. Though it might be more to do with her general aversion towards sitting on her arse and flicking through youtube. She's more likely to drag me away from watching Remi to go for an actual ride. If she does actively seek mtb content it's less likely entertainment and more likely something practical like a how-to or product info.
- Spends the same as me on bike stuff give or take, except obviously we don't buy separate shock pumps etc. We have the same number of bikes each, similar amounts of kit, spend the same on car parks, uplifts etc.

All obviously anecdotal from a sample of one, but that's what you asked about so I hope it helps.

I find the question "did she buy her own bike" equal parts funny and sobering in terms of how people still live in this day and age. Of course she bought her own bikes. I'm her husband, not her sponsor. She's a grown up, she can sort herself out. Unless it was like a birthday gift or something, why would I buy it for her... Though we tend not to give each other birthday presents worth that much so here we are. It just reminds me that what's obvious to me is not necessarily so to others.
  • 1 0
 I don't follow racing and was surprised that women and men don't do the same courses. I'm wondering why women struggle with momentum to do the men's jumps as mentioned in the article. If they weigh less, then wouldn't they 'float' better across the course and keep momentum? Or is it because they lack weight they can't gain enough gravitational momentum?
  • 3 0
 Its a matter of surface area vs weight and as such how the wind resistance slows the rider down. The way humans are built means the surface area of the rider does not go up proportionally to the weight so the force of the wind resistance also goes up slower than the weight. This means a heavier rider is able to carry more speed as they are, proportionally, less effected by the air resistance and the wind. Men are generally heavier than women so they can generally carry more speed. Men are also, on average, more powerful than women so when there is the opportunity for one or two cranks between jumps men can put in more force to build their speed back up.
  • 2 1
 The men keep more momentum because of corner speed and not dragging their brakes on any straight. This is partly due to the men being stronger, having longer legs/arms, and a higher propensity towards aggression. Those factors allow for a more stable + supple riding position, greater risk taking, stronger pumping/pedaling, and less fatigue throughout a race run.
  • 2 2
 Im 100% for equal pay but for equal results, this means riding at mind bending speed and skillset.
Take any major sporting code, if a womans team played a mens team, especially certain ones like rugby/soccer/mlb etc they would get destroyed - the same goes for MTB racing, men can go way faster and ride way gnarlier shit and everyone wants to see the best and thats what sponsors want from their riders.
If Tracey hannah was as fast as Bruni... there would be equal pay.

The issue is always around want sponsors want - normally they want the fastest racer of the biggest group.
  • 3 0
 I disagree somewhat. Ronda Rousey and Serena Williams etc, even Anna Kournikova, knew they'd get flogged by men, yet they brought in the viewers/sold product that saw them get paid close to or more than their male counterparts. You bring in the big dollars, you get paid the big dollars.

In the MTB world, if a woman was to generate as many sales when she changed brands like Sam or Gwin, she'd be paid handsomely.
  • 3 3
 Money and value is dictated by quality and popularity. In mountain biking, there are more men racing and interested in the sport, and better quality athletes. Like the NBA, the pay is dictated by the size of the audience and merchandise revenue. People don't want to watch and invest money in an inferior product. If these girls want equal money, be equally good, with equal competition. Even the first question about course difficulty illustrates the current girls don't make the grade. Get good girls and provide a product people are whiling to invest their time in. This s#!t isn't handed out, earn it.
  • 2 2
 Playing Devils Advocate.... If we remove Gender all together and compare the salaries of people the same speed... Does the top paid female MTBer get earn more than her same speed male counterpart... ie does the female World Cup DH champ get paid the same as 'similar speed' rank 10,000th male?
  • 2 3
 Women want to race the same tracks....interesting, i recall hearing many of the top names not want to hit main features on several top tracks...

I don't see the pay gap going anywhere unless more women get into the sport....maybe Covid helped that.

I can't imagine many viewers of WCDH care about the womens' race...i like many of the female racers, they're nice/skilled etc, but when you compare the times....it's hard to tune in.
  • 2 0
 A lot of the Canadian posters here are doing their best impersonation of Justin Trudeau. It's a sad state of affairs.
  • 2 1
 If the women's sports bring in the same amount of revenue as the men's sports then surely equal pay but until then it's just economics.
  • 4 2
 I have never been paid to ride a mountain bike.
  • 2 3
 athletes get paid by sponsors, based on their value to said sponsors. Men's sports bring in more revenue, ergo, they make more money. NBA vs WNBA MTBs aren't some magical instrument that suspends all economic theory.
  • 2 3
 The NBA vs WNBA comparison is absolutely not applicable here.

The money teams pay to basketball athletes isn't because they sell a lot of basketballs or shoes or whatever by demonstrating that they are the best balls or shoes for the job. They pay big money to basketball athletes because they sell a lot of tickets and pay per views to the games themselves with a smaller segment being merchandising. Yes, a lot of them have shoe sponsorships but their teams pay them based on their ability to draw a crowd and nobody actually thinks LBJ has won so many championships because of the shoes he wears.

The money paid to MTB athletes is because they help to show off the equipment the riders are using. Women riders make up a much larger percentage of the riding public than the pro field, especially in the actually lucrative "people who actually buy new bikes" market. (pinkbike commenters are overwhelmingly younger, male, enthusiasts who complain near constantly about the price of new bikes, we are not who the wider MTB industry is generally selling to)

Showing those women who actually buy and ride bikes how good the bikes are by having the top women ride them is making these companies a lot of money and they are getting that value without having to pay for it at anything like the same cost they would for a male athlete at the same level of the sport. That's what the professional riders are asking for, equal pay for equal work and equal value given to the brands they represent.

There is one athlete who answered the survey who makes over half a million dollars a year. Would anyone think that is a woman? Of course they wouldn't, but Rachel Atherton has more race wins than any currently racing rider in downhill, shouldn't she be earning most if it is results that count?
  • 5 5
 @Patrick9-32: you are forgetting the market. the people that buy the goods that the advertisers are selling. IT'S MEN. Almost entirely men. Even if it's for a woman, it's likely bought by a man. Basically the exact reverse of household and personal products. Ever seen a Men's shampoo/deodorant/etc ad? they are 100% geared towards the female consumer. Why you ask? simple. because women generally make those buying decisions.

  • 4 4
 @conoat: All caps doesn't make you right.

Some men do choose the bike for their partner, or give them their old hand me down bike that doesn't fit, that's for sure, however those women don't tend to stick with riding and they don't buy a second bike (and their partner goes on pinkbike and laments as to why women shouldn't be paid as much as men to ride professionally.)

Even in whistler bike park, probably the most brodown place to ride bikes a quarter of all of the riders are women (www.pinkbike.com/news/whistler-opening-day-survey-2020.html). In more family friendly places to ride you can bet that the numbers are closer to even these days. Women ride bikes, women like riding bikes, women ride with their friends, they ride with their families, they choose their own bikes, they have jobs, make money and buy their own bikes.

Your attitude belongs in 1950 with the rest of the sexist bullshit this far down this comment thread.
  • 4 4
 @Patrick9-32: "a quater of all riders are women"

so you agree. the market is 75% men.

good day
  • 2 1
 If by "The market" you mean one of the most extreme and intimidating bike parks on the planet, then ... yes? But if by the market you mean the people who are out there at trail centres, XC loops and lift and uplift serviced downhill venues around the world, then of course I f*cking don't, read the rest of the comment you plum.
  • 2 1
 @Patrick9-32: How did you come to 50-50? Seems not to be true in Europe (Atleast in Italy, France, Switzerland, Scandinavia) not for trails nor any bikepark or shuttle centers i've been and there a lot of those. It seems that 5-15% are females.
  • 2 0
 @Juuhan: "Closer to even" not "the number of women cycling is exactly as high as the number of men."

5-15% would be very low here in the UK and other places around the world where I have ridden but it could certainly be the case where you are, if so it is time for some advocacy to try and build those numbers up. More riders, and more diversity of riders is better for all of us.
  • 3 2
 @Patrick9-32: do you really think 50% of mtb riders are women? That's certainly not the case in California, and I always encourage female friends to try mtb. I think 5-15% is pretty accurate. You also mentioned women are doing more tame riding and would have less representation at whistler or dh parks. So pro females doing dh world riding would have less of an effect on women as that's not their style of riding nearly as much compared to men. I've also noticed men tend to nerd out a lot more on bikes and women are far more likely to ask a friend or partner for advice on which bike to go with. All this seems to me to show that advertising to men is a lot more profitable. And at the end of the day, these companies aren't out there to get equal representation between the genders, they want to make money.
  • 5 4
 I can't ride the jumps the men can, but pay me the same as I ride around them.
  • 9 9
 "women in this sport are exceedingly capable and can compete on the same courses as the men." RAMPAGE??
The best women will be trans men if the woke BS carrys on hahah
  • 4 3
 I feel like for equal pay you're going to have to do equal work. Being a minute slower clearly isn't doing the same work.
  • 1 2
 Big companies invest more money in the men's fields because they sell more men's bikes. The men get paid more cause of the amount of work it takes to be in the top percent of a considerably larger field of competitors.
  • 4 2
 ... sigh ...
  • 6 5
 Theres also a male-paygap between amateurs and proriders.
  • 7 7
 Ok cool, let's combine the fields of men and women and let the top 30 get sponsored
  • 1 2
 keep focusing in showing bikes and stufff, and let the gender questions be runned in left wing feminist sites.
  • 5 7
 It’s not really a factory team if they don’t have racers in each category.
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