Double Olympic champion Laura Trott has backed calls for a women’s Tour de France – but not at the expense of the existing women’s circuit.
Trott has joined Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling teammate Dani King and Olympic medallists Emma Pooley and Marianne Vos in championing the return of the event, last held in 2009.
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But the London 2012 winner fears racing over the same distance as the men with rides of 200km a day could damage the way women’s cycling is seen in the eyes of the fans and would prefer a shorter version.
“What Chris Froome has done has been absolutely amazing and I can’t believe we’ve had two British winners in the past two years,” said Trott, who has previously ridden for Dutch teams Moving Ladies and Team IBIS Cycles.
“I do think it’s important that we do get a women’s version of the Tour de France but I think it needs to be thought through.
“If we put it on the same time as the men’s then we will lose too many women’s races. I think we need to develop what we’ve got first and build on that.
“I must be top 100 on the road scene out of the women and I wouldn’t finish three weeks of 200km a day, it would be physically too hard.
“Plus we want the racing to be exciting – we don’t want people coming in in dribs and drabs. If we have races of that length it won’t bring any more people in as it’s just boring.”
Trott is in action in the capital on Saturday, August 3 at the Prudential RideLondon Grand Prix, where she will take on around 100 of the world’s best women on a closed 1.3-mile loop around some of London’s iconic landmarks.
The Harlow rider is an ambassador for the event, and will start a Guinness World Record attempt to create the longest parade of bikes in the morning before taking to the saddle for the hour-long race.
“I’m really excited about Prudential RideLondon,” she said.
“For me it was about getting involved and inspire as many people as I could to get out on their bikes and be the face of mass participation cycling, and it’s a great weekend.”
Prudential RideLondon takes place on August 3-4. If you’re inspired to ride, visit www.prudentialridelondon.co.uk
Prudential RideLondon-Surrey Classic start list