No more podium girls (in the Tour Down Under, at least)!

I waved goodbye to them a awhile ago in this blog post. In “Kissing the Podium Girls Goodbye” I wrote, “Where do women belong in cycling? On bikes and in races!”

So I was super happy, big smile happy, to read this headline in my morning social media newsfeed, TDU podium girls to go.

The South Australian Sports Minister, Leo Bignell, today announced that it would replace the Santos Tour Down Under podium girls with junior cyclists.

Here at Cycling Central we’ve long argued for a change of attitude in cycling, as far back as 2013 in fact, preferring to see podium girls as incompatible with a sport striving for genuine gender equity, and preferring to see women deserving of a podium place as athletes not ornaments.

“The Government’s paying for grid girls at the same time we’re putting money into mental health areas to help young women who have body image problems,” Bignell told the ABC.

Some happy news for a December day. Change in the right direction does happen once in a awhile. I love the idea that it will be junior cyclists who now get to play this role.

See more about this here:

female cyclist being kissed by podium boys
“Some women’s races have opted to use podium boys in recent years in an attempt to equalize the practice. La Course by Le Tour de France, Gent-Wevelgem and the Ladies Tour of Norway have all employed podium boys but the practice has continued to be questioned.”

And for the record, I’m not a big fan of podium boys either! See 


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