Sexist Caption Printed In Popular Cycling Magazine Sparks Understandable Backlash

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Sexism is rife in the cycling world with women often underrepresented (Shutterstock)

The editor of UK magazine Cycling Weekly has apologised after one of his subs printed a caption reading “token attractive woman” in the latest issue.

Simon Richardson posted a statement on Twitter shortly after readers noticed the error and began sharing it online.

He insists that the glitch – clearly caused by a sub making what they thought was a hilarious joke, only to forget to delete it in time – does not “reflect the culture” of the publication.


His statement read:

“In this week’s issue of Cycling Weekly we published a regular Ride With feature with the Hinckley Cycling Race Club of Leicester. Unfortunately during the magazine’s production process a member of the sub-editing team decided to write an idiotic caption on a photo of one of the female members of the club.

“The caption is neither funny nor representative of the way we feel or approach our work. Sadly in the rush to get the magazine finished it was missed by other members of the team and eventually sent to print.

“We would like to apologise unreservedly to the rider in the photograph, the Hinckley CRC and all our readers. This appalling lack of judgement by an individual is just that, and not a reflection of the culture in the CW office.”

Cyclist left feeling ‘gutted’

Hannah Noel, the woman in the photo, wrote on Facebook that she is “absolutely gutted and disappointed in the magazine” for overlooking her “ability as a female cyclist” to focus on her looks instead.

Sorry isn’t enough

Richardson’s grovelling apology is not enough to placate many readers, who claim that the magazine does not adequately represent female cyclists and even seems to consider them an “aberration”.

Sexism is rife in the cycling world, with the appearance of scantily-clad podium girls at the big events drawing particular ire from the many cycling fans (and general humans) who believe it is an old-fashioned tradition that should be banished to the past. Nevertheless, it continues, proving there is still a long way to go to put women on an equal footing to men in sport.

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