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Names you should know: The greatest historical rivalries in women’s cycling

Names you should know: The greatest historical rivalries in women’s cycling

10th August 1970: Former women’s world cycle champion Beryl Burton of Britain takes the bronze medal in the 3,000 metres pursuit during the World Cycling…

Friday, Apr 22

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10th August 1970: Former women’s world cycle champion Beryl Burton of Britain takes the bronze medal in the 3,000 metres pursuit during the World Cycling Championships in Leicester. From Six-Day stars to record-breaking world champions, the stories of these women and their rivalries deserve to be told.

While riders in today’s women’s peloton benefit from more live race broadcasts and media coverage than ever before, female cycling figures from the past are often criminally underreported while their male contemporaries are mythologised. However the history of women’s racing is replete with legendary figures and indeed some passionate rivalries over the years. Here are some of those riders and rivalries you should know about. Tillie Anderson Tillie Anderson and ‘Lisette’

For a brief period during the late 1800s, track cycling was one of the biggest sports in the US and the women garnered just as much attention as the men. One of the leading stars of the scene was Tillie Anderson, part of a group known as ‘The Big Five’ alongside Lizzie Glaw, Helen Baldwin, May Allen, and Dottie Farnsworth.

Born in Sweden in 1875 Anderson grew up on a farm before she emigrated to Chicago at 16. Having noticed the popularity of bikes in her adopted city she saved money by working in a laundry by day and as a seamstress by night to buy her own bike. It wasn’t long before she was taking on challenges such as the century record. Soon after, she met her future husband, Swedish racing cyclist […]

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