Last week, the trophies for our 2008 Series Champion "WEMS":http://wemseries.com/ 12-hour female team arrived- thanks Al!- so the ladies celebrated in style. This year, the team adds new member Erica Chianese to the returning roster of Amanda Barbato, Julie Popper, and Audrey Thibeau and will be back for another complete series. We're hoping, though, that this will be the year that another female team mounts a challenge for the title. We think WEMS is a great intro for women MTB racers.
Why WEMS? For beginning mountain bike racers, it's great. You're there with a group of friends. It's laid-back. You don't need to buy a mountain bike, since you can pass one bike off between the riders, so it doesn't take a huge financial committment to get involved. When you're not riding, you can get to know other racers and learn from them. And the fields are small so it's less overwhelming than, say, WORS.
For 2009, the Half Acre Cycling's female team will ride at least four of the 12-hour races and are hoping to volunteer at one, too. Last year at the John Muir race, the Mad FORCs women said they were thinking of fielding a 12-hour female team for the 09 series. We really, really hope they- and others- follow through!