Lexicon Edit: Velominata

Lexicon Edit: Velominata

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Without a doubt cycling is dominated by males.  Stop for a second and make two lists.  One list including all the male  pro cyclists you can think of off the top of your head, male riding companions of yours, and other male Velominati.  On the other list, jot down all the female pro cyclists you can, female riding companions of yours, and most importantly, female Velominati.  Without a doubt, guaranteed, fo’ sho’ the first list you made is considerably longer than the second.  Furthermore, I’m guessing your second list, the one with the names of women, has something like 5-10 names in the pro column,  something less than that in the female cyclists you ride with column, and something smaller still in the female Velominati column.  Far be it from me to pontificate on why this might be, although I do have my suspicions, so let’s just say it just is.  But that doesn’t mean it can’t change.

That said, we’ve received some pointed feedback from the fairer sex that we’re a bit of an old boys club here at the site.  Moreover, some of our female readership has taken umbrage with our use of the term Velomihottie.  Upon further reflection, we can understand why.  In its inception, Velomihottie was meant to convey a female Velominatus, a feminine derivation of the term which denotes a cycling disciple of the highest order.  Seems simple enough, right?  However, the misogynistic tone of the word “hottie” has been pointed out as something that is turning female readership and participation away.   That is not something that we, the Keepers, ever intended.

Taking their feedback a step further and actually making it constructive, something women are much better at than men are, our female counterparts offered up a suggestion: Velominata.  This makes perfect sense, no?  It seems the correct feminine derivation of our hackneyed faux-latin masculine Velominatus.   So with that we offer up an edit to the Lexicon:

Velominata: A female cycling disciple of the highest order.

So thank you to all of our female readers, no Velominata, who visit the site, lay down the V, and appreciate this place enough to actually offer up a great suggestion.  You are correct, we can be a bit of an old boys club around here sometimes.  But if you stick around, let your voices be heard, and tell us to HTFU often enough that can change.  More importantly we want you to share your passion for cycling on these pages.

By the way, the Velominata pictured above is Katrien Van Looy.  She’s Rik Van Looy’s grand daughter.  If you don’t like this change to the Lexicon then talk to one of them.  They’ll rip your spindly little legs off.

// Etiquette // General

  1. Ok if we r going with trying to improve the chick-friendliness of this site (that phrase probably doesn’t assist) then surely there is a lexicon entry begging to be made about Jeannie Looooooongo and multiple decades of the V?

  2. And pretty sure Longo would be able to punch the living suitcase out of Reeeshard. If only she did…

  3. Marcus :
    And pretty sure Longo would be able to punch the living suitcase out of Reeeshard. If only she did…

    That Chick is a BEAST! And she and Reeeshard probably shared more than just a few wins together, more like a few needles and pushers.

  4. Maybe Veannie Loooongo?

  5. Love it!

  6. well played!

  7. @sgt
    For what it’s worth, I love getting Latin lessons from Billy Crystal.

  8. Nicely done, Brett… and great photos Frank. Nice to see Nicole up first… I remember seeing an interview with her after that awesome Rule #5 and #9 combo with her Beijing Road Race Gold (that yell at the finish line… awesome), where she was asked who her heros/heroines were, to which she replied “Eddie Merckx”… I always thought it slightly sad that her greatest hero wasn’t a velominata… Having said that, there are several velominata I ride with (who kick my butt uphill AND on the flat) who have her top of their list.

  9. @Steampunk
    Fernando, por favor.

    Delenda est Alberto

  10. TBH, there are still problems with using the term veominata – it still makes a distinction between male and female and there is really no need for that. I would vote for velominati for all genders.

  11. Here, here. I love women cyclists that come out and play with the boys. Especially when they kick my ass. In fact, I’m going out for a ride with one of the people I most enjoy riding with in about a half an hour. She’s one of the few cyclists (male or female) that will go out with me in inclimate weather. She lives for riding/racing and she dishes out the “V”. When I started riding a few years ago I was so proud when I could finally hold her wheel for two hours. Now that I’ve gotten stronger and the roles have changed in who tries to hang on to who she’s really supportive of me and encourages me all the time.

    Thanks Anna.

  12. Crap. It just started snowing. Rule #9 Baby!

  13. Jeanne Longo, and you all know exactly where.

  14. @Mike Hurl
    Respectfully, I have to disagree. Men and women are different. That’s why we use the words “men” and “women”. In English, we do not have a gender neutral term when discussing people. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. I don’t want to be an “it” any more than Liz Hatch or Lizzie Armitstead want to be “its”. Yes, they are bike racers, but they are female bike racers. Distinguishing between men’s cycling and women’s cycling is not condescending unless one chooses to make it so.

  15. @eightzero
    Note the Pantani technique and the lack of wasps.

  16. A++ A fond memory is having trouble holding Connie Carpenters wheel in an open 1-2 race and the same with Beth Hieden, they both used low key men’s races to tune up. As far as I remember there was no difference in their performance and 2/3 of the field – as for the 1/3 I was in it was fun to try and hang on for a lap.

  17. @eightzero
    NICE Photo! Loads of “V” there!

  18. @Cyclops – It’s “hear, hear” not “here, here”, as in “Let’s hear what he has to say”.

  19. @Oli Brooke-White
    Not to mention “inclement” weather..,

  20. @Oli Brooke-White

    What’d you say mate? I can’t here you.

  21. At the end of the day it is hackneyed faux-latin and Velominata was what was suggested so we’ll keep it at that and yes, it makes complete sense to keep Velomihottie as a term of endearment. I’d never thought of it as being gender neutral. Strong work everyone.

    I’m really looking forward to riding again his summer with my VMH. She didn’t ride last summer much as she was cooking the baby (due any day now) but man, seeing her climb out of the saddle is really fun. I’m not sure if it’s her Italian bloodline, her size, or natural talent but I seriously see visions of Pantani when she does it. She dances on those pedals.

  22. Cyclops:
    @Oli Brooke-White
    What’d you say mate? I can’t here you.

    ha ha

  23. Steampunk:
    @sgt
    For what it’s worth, I love getting Latin lessons from Billy Crystal.

    A man of many talents…. @sgt that is. Billy I’m not so sure about

  24. I can’t believe you let yourself get pushed around. After reading the second paragraph and with a statement like “some of our female readership has taken umbrage with our use of the term Velomihottie”. What crap is that? You may ride like a lion with a suitcase of courage but you wrote this post like a triple chainring grinding/trouserband riding/rearview mirror looking/hairy legged/reflector laden/rain pant wearing/pie plate equipped/12-28 mashing wuss. I will admit that there are some bonafide women riders that throw down the V – absolutely but I think that “Velomihotie” is a term of utmost respect showing prowess on the bike and overall hotness off the bike – a double threat if you will. A feat that many attempt and few attain. Velomihotties possess an almost mystical quality when they are present on group rides and are often subjects of mythical lore among cyclists. May Merckx have mercy on your soul.

    Mongol General: Wrong! Conan! What is best in life?
    Conan: To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.
    Mongol General: That is good! That is good.

  25. @ms30594

    Stefanie? How did you find me here?

  26. Anna Meares for female cyclist of the year – unbeaten as far as I know this track season, which has included the commonwealth games and 4 WC rounds, and setting records in the process. Also like the fact that she’s a track sprinter who ISN’T suffering some personality/aggressive/sociopathic disorder.

  27. @Buck Rogers
    Longo’s being dishing the V for decades. She whups up on girls (girls!) that could rip my guns to shreds, and those girls could be her granddaughters. Say what you like, she’s a hardman.

  28. Susy Pryde and Sarah Ulmer. Legends.

  29. Very well done Marko!
    Velominate (fem. plural) from Italy say thank you!

  30. @Marko

    “@ms30594 Stefanie? How did you find me here?”

    ++10^9

  31. ms30594 :
    I can’t believe you let yourself get pushed around. After reading the second paragraph and with a statement like “some of our female readership has taken umbrage with our use of the term Velomihottie”. What crap is that? You may ride like a lion with a suitcase of courage but you wrote this post like a triple chainring grinding/trouserband riding/rearview mirror looking/hairy legged/reflector laden/rain pant wearing/pie plate equipped/12-28 mashing wuss. I will admit that there are some bonafide women riders that throw down The V – absolutely but I think that “Velomihotie” is a term of utmost respect showing prowess on the bike and overall hotness off the bike – a double threat if you will. A feat that many attempt and few attain. Velomihotties possess an almost mystical quality when they are present on group rides and are often subjects of mythical lore among cyclists. May Merckx have mercy on your soul.
    Mongol General: Wrong! Conan! What is best in life?Conan: To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.Mongol General: That is good! That is good.

    Interesting take on the post.

    Seems like there are definite viewpoints being voiced here, all good and all have their own merit. I think that it is generally showing that most didn’t really see VMH as being sexist, just how one viewed either themself or others within the peloton. With ( not wanting to at all) a risk of opening another can of worms here, we could all do with a little less of the PC world we have become to appease a select few and HTFU.

    VMH and Velominata; both are valid terms and the latter is a worthy addition to the lexicon.

    @ms30594
    full marks to a Velominata that quotes from Conan the Barbarian!

  32. Nice on @Marko. And as said I always thought the Velomihottie was for my significant other, not for anyone elses cycling significant other.

    +1 on Emma “Lays down significant showings of The V ” Pooley. Saw her at a Cyclo Sportif in Perth. 80km of hills and she had a team of 8 guys with her. I think she only came back with 4 in the hurt locker and none of them did any work on the Front.

  33. @Pedale.Forchetta
    Whomever that young Velominata is this pic makes it look like she’s a budding young lioness. Eyes fixed down the road seemingly not caring what the dude is doing with her bike as long as it gets fixed so she can go lay down some pain. Cool shot.

  34. @Pedale.Forchetta
    That’s a very cool photo BTW.

    Love the black & white & the intensity & longing in her eyes. It’s like she’s thinking – “just hurry up with the back wheel so I can get back out there & dish out some more of the V.”

    @minion
    hear, hear (or is that here, here as in I’m hear and agreeing with @minion?)


  35. And IP legend Alison Shanks

  36. @il ciclista medio
    hear who? Horton?

    Classic cycle courier question for noewbies over the RT, “you’re what now where with who?”

  37. May it beseech the Keepers: should we reconsider the term “Hardman?”

  38. @Eightzero
    There’s something wrong with “Hardwoman”? (There certainly would be with “Flahutess”, but I think we should proceed on the basis (linguistically correct or no) that “Flahute” is not gender-specific.)

  39. @Eightzero
    Let’s not get carried away

    Delenda est Alberto

  40. @Marko & Ciclista Medio
    Thank you! I’ve made this photo at the Italian Championship this Summer, all the girls were really cool.

  41. Great write up!! Huge repsect for all the Velominanta out there. Katrien is actually one of my favorite female riders; love that this petite little ‘girl next door’ looking thing could crush 99% of the male riders I know. A couple weeks back, I was out for a ride and caught onto a group of about 20 ladies and one other guy, about 40km later I had to peel of the back and find a nice place that no one could see where I could puke my guys out with as little humiliation as possible.

  42. @ms30594
    While I’d agree that I never really considered the term offensive, I can see how ladies may take umbrage at it… I mean, let’s be honest, Velominati surely sounds far more respectable and upstanding than would “Velomistud” or something similar… As for the ‘hottie’ part of it, I could care less what she looks like… If she can lay down the V, she can look like Rodney Dangerfield for all I care, she still deserves respect. Of that group of 20 ladies I rode with, maybe one would pass for a ‘hottie’ but they all damn sure buried me that day and get my respect as Velominate.

  43. @all
    Just to be perfectly clear, Velominata is actually just an addition, Velomihottie stays in the Lexicon for sure. Velominata is added as the official term for female velominatus, while Velomihottie remains the term we affectionately use to refer to a Velominata who looks as good off the bike as she does on it – as it was originally inspired by The Original Velomihottie, my one and only.

  44. 65 posts and no Liz Hatch ?

  45. Definitely a Velominata/Velomihottie.

  46. Stumbled upon this site

    http://www.vitadimilano.com

    while googling for a Campagnolo image recently. Not sure if this is actually worthy of an inclusion but I felt it is certainly worth a look. The artist, Vita Di Milano has done a series called “women and wheels”. My favourite’s are the Lady Campagnolo and Lady Shimano. Major rule violations throughout but excusable IMO.

    Judging by the artist’s quote at the bottom of the page, I believe he may be a Velominatus…..

    “In an ideal world there would only be bicycles, roads
    smooth as silk and the wind always at your back.”
    Vita 2005

  47. This is something of a dredge but: Anna Meares has won the sprint at the latest round of the world cup, and I figured a re – up on how the Velominata are performing now the classics are underway might be a good thing.

  48. Emily Collins.

    My new favorite Kiwi (sorry, @minion).

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