Yesterday I had the rare opportunity to enjoy a mountain bike race and festival as a spectator. Not as a racer, a promoter, a vendor or a photographer but as a fan, a friend, a consumer and a mom. You see, yesterday was the 6th annual Beti Bike Bash here in Colorado. This women’s mountain bike event is put together by the women of the Yeti Beti race team, and presented by Stan’s No Tubes. Last year I raced the event, and had an absolute blast. This year I opted to enjoy the event from the sidelines, and share with my daughter her first ever bike race.
It is fitting that the Beti Bike Bash was Ellie’s first bike race. I realize she is only 3 months old and didn’t really understand the magnitude of this women’s event as she sat in her stroller. One day she will. She will see the picture of her 3 month old self as I tell her about the amazing things that this event is doing for women in biking, and explain that the Beti Bike Bash was her first experience ever with bike racing. We were able to witness our friend Shayla enter, and finish, her first ever bike race. We felt the pride and elation of children watching their moms start a race, sweat, push, and achieve the title of finisher. We watched husbands, and boyfriends become the support crew. We enjoyed the dozen or so vendors (mostly men) tend to women’s questions, and contribute to the growing culture of women’s biking. Finally, we saw first hand the new bikes from Yeti called the Yeti Beti. Two models that are graced with the name of an amazing bike team and brand. Bikes that are made for women but don’t pigeon hole us into short tube tubes and cheaper parts. More information on the specs and pricing of these bikes will be posted later this week.
It is hard to summarize the feelings I cycled through as I left the event yesterday. As a mother to a little girl I am so honored to know Amy, Chelsea, and all the Beti’s that make this event happen. To know that Ellie has amazing role models, and every opportunity to dream and be whatever she wants is one part relief and the other part joy. Her battle as a girl in the sport (if she chooses) will be much easier than mine thanks 100% to events like this one. and people like Amy and Chelsea. As a cyclist this event is really a unique celebration of women’s empowerment. The shops, vendors and volunteers that believe that women in biking make a difference can’t be quantified and only experienced.
To Amy, Chelsea, all the Betis, the volunteers, and the sponsors, I can not thank you enough for empowering women and providing this amazing event for me to share with my daughter.