Louise Livesey // 11 August 2008
OK so I’m not a sports fan but I just wanted to note – as no-one else seems to have so far – that the UK’s first two medals were both won by women. Nicole Cooke in the Cycling Road Race and Rebecca Adlington 400m swimming freestyle.
And now for the gripe – according to the Guardian Nicole Cooke’s achievement was down to the trainer and the team director, both men.
Road racing has never been an exact science and never will be, but the British cycling performance director Dave Brailsford and his team have been working on it and it showed yesterday. When Nicole Cooke sprinted across the line to claim Britain’s first medal of these Olympic Games, it not only marked the pinnacle of the Welsh woman’s eight-year international career but was also the culmination of a meticulous planning process going back more than a year.
From The Guardian
I’m sorry – is this “woman wins gold medal, but be a man’s achievement” in play or what?
Edit: For more on this kind of misogyny go see this (in which the Independent reduces Olympian Sportswomen to “pin-ups”) and this (in which apparently the best reason to watch female Olympian’s is the possibility of a “wardrobe malfunction”). And then read this from Feminist Philosophers and this from Kira Cochrane at the Guardian (although on the latter, why is this considered “Lifestyle” – is being a woman suddenly a “lifestyle choice”?).