Hey, my name is Hazel and I’m nineteen years old.
Q: How did you get into cycling?
I used to cycle with my dad when I was little, going through woods and muddy trails, but I really got into it when I got a job at Pearson Cycles and saw photos of two of my colleagues at a cyclocross race. The amount of mud that was involved really got my attention so I joined a local club and started training every week before taking part in my first season. Riding with the guys at work really got me into mountain biking as well.
My best cycling memory is from when I was younger and my dad took me riding on Wimbledon Common...
Q: What type of cycling do you do the most any why?
Cycling for me is a fun past time and I find there’s so many different styles to try that you’re forever finding more interesting ways to ride and race. I also really like the various elements of riding, that you can go out as a social group and have a relaxed ride or you can go out of your own as well as the whole racing element which I really enjoy, just the buzz of a race really gets me excited for races.
I tend to do more off-road cycling than anything, mixing it up between Cyclocross and mountain biking because I just love getting covered in mud at cyclocross races and the speed of hurtling down a trail when mountain biking.
Q: What is your favourite cycling memory?
When I was younger my dad took me riding on Wimbledon Common to look for the Wombles, he also thought it was a good idea to teach me to ride through the muddy puddles. He soon regretted it when I was covered head to toe in mud. I still remember the look on my mum's face when we got back to the car and she saw me.
My favourite Anna's Legs design was Mountain Sunset. The colours are so pretty, they go well together and aren’t ridiculously bright or girly.
Q: Tell us about your experience on the Anna' Legs photoshoot.
The Anna's Legs photoshoot was such a fun experience! It was a lovely, welcoming atmosphere and I really liked how I was included in the decision making, such as make up. For some of the shots the photographer just let me do my thing and any pose that I liked, especially the bendier ones.
I really loved how comfy the products were, and how little you feel the padding in the bottom. Often with padded cycling bottoms they feel a bit odd to walk and sit in when you’re not on the bike, however I often forgot I was wearing cycling specific leggings with Anna's Legs because the fit has been so well designed.
My favourite design was definitely Mountain Sunset. The colours are so pretty, they go well together and aren’t ridiculously bright or girly. They're subtle but colourful which I really like.
Q: You have worked in a bike shop for a few years, have you seen many - or any - changes in the environment for women's cycling?
I think the hardest element for both women and those working in the bike shop is that all women's clothing seems to be either really dark or pink.
It's also hard for bike shop workers to know what products to stock. It's common for customers to have to request items to be ordered specially for them, which can then be hard if they want to see it in person or try it on, which I personally would want to do. This ends with them feeling as if they're not being catered for very well.
I do think the amount of women coming into cycling shops is increasing and that the women's cycling scene is also getting bigger, which is helping is various ways. Shops are beginning to see more frequently what clothing and colours they are looking for. I think having more women working in the cycling industry could help a lot more too because those who are fairly new to it, or feel spoken down to in some situations, will feel more comfortable discussing certain things with a female member of staff compared to male.
Q: How would you like to see more women encouraged to cycle?
It would be good to see more women encouraged into cycling using simple methods like women's only rides and women's only training days, because although myself and many others are perfectly happy riding with other male riders, some may feel intimidated by the idea of riding with men, so this is a good social way to get into and start to enjoy cycling, as well as improving skills.
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