Velodonnas and Anti-racism: What we’re talking about and an invitation to participate.

It’s the beginning of July and 2020 has been one hell of a year already. We are living in a climate crisis and a global pandemic and while we were sheltering in place at the end of May the murder of George Floyd by a police officer in Minneapolis sparked a firestorm of public protest across the USA and Canada. Anti-black and anti-indigenous racism, its history and the devastating role it plays in our society is in our daily news feeds and some of us are talking about it privately, for the first time in our lives.

Velodonnas is having an important conversation right now. Like individuals and organisations locally and globally, we are challenged to examine our role in anti-racism and systemic inequality. As a Winnipeg based, recreational cycling club for women, what is our role in promoting racial equality and removing barriers to participation in our club and in the sport/activity of cycling at large? How do we do this work in a meaningful way?

For a few weeks, we have been listening and learning. We have been gathering resources on racism and antiracism generally, and in sports and cycling, specifically. If you know of any resources to add, please contact us.

Our next step is to form a subcommittee, tasked with informing the Velodonnas leadership group on how our club can continue to “inform, instruct and inspire” with an antiracist lens.
And not only with an antiracist lens. To be honest, we are also learning more about the intersectionality of racism and feminism and we are asking ourselves questions like, how can we relate to the LGBTQ+ community and to people living with disabilities. We acknowledge the many areas of cycling advocacy and community building where we can do better. We are figuring out how to start and we want to do it right.

We recognize this is not something we will figure out overnight. We expect this work to be on-going with a focus on building not just stronger cyclists but a stronger, inclusive community. Opportunities for involvement are expected to grow as next steps are identified.

We invite anyone who is interested in participating in this work with us, to please contact the club today.

Velodonnas Distance Challenge

Covid-19 has forced us to cancel our annual Women’s 100 ride but that won’t stop us from challenging you to some long rides this season!

The Velodonnas Distance Challenge is a SOLO challenge with flexibility in how you participate – given that we’ve all spent different amounts of time in the saddle this season so far. 

We challenge you to complete (roughly) a 60, 80 or 100 km ride (or one of each!) in the month of July and post about your ride on Instagram.

Ride to Win!
Tag @velodonnas to be entered into a draw to win a gift card from a local business OR a $25 credit toward Velodonnas merchandise. Suggested hashtags:

  • #velodonnas
  • #velodonnas100
  • #veloodonnas80
  • #velodonnas60
  • #velodonnasdistancechallenge

Riding in Winnipeg and need route recommendations? We have some for you:

These routes are available in Strava (a social network for athletes):
Sign up for a free account or pay for a subscription (optional).

If you download the Strava app to your phone or smartwatch you can choose to record your rides on either device and it will automatically upload to the Strava website. 

Alternatively, record your rides on any (GPS enabled) cycling computer or wearable and upload your rides to Strava manually (or automatically with a few more technological steps).

Join our Strava Club and see your weekly stats on the leaderboard:

But most importantly, get out there, anywhere, and RIDE YOUR BIKE! 
Don’t forget to post Instagram photos of your Velodonnas Distance Challenge rides AND tag us @velodonnas for a chance to win.

Club Activities Resume June 8th

We are so happy to announce that official club rides and skill clinics are starting again! 

Of course there are a lot of changes this year but STARTING THIS WEEK, we are offering weekly INTERVAL (road) training rides and MOUNTAIN BIKE GROUP rides. Group road rides (Monday Night Rides) will not resume while physical distancing rules are in effect.

We are super excited to start our season with you. As expected, there are a number of Covid-19 protocols in place to keep everyone safe.

Riding Together Rules

  • All riders must pre-register to ride 24 hours in advance
  • All rides are limited to 10 participants, including the Ride Leader 
  • ALL RIDERS MUST BE CURRENT VELODONNAS MEMBERS. If you haven’t renewed your membership yet, here is the link:!/events/velodonnas-cycling-2020
  • Practice physical distancing by staying a minimum of two (2) meters away from other people at all times, while on the trail and in the parking lot
  • No passing on single-track trail (mountain bike)
  • When meeting another rider coming in the opposite direction, you must move off the trail to allow the other rider to pass
  • Ride behind riders of higher ability, to help minimize congestion of the trails (mountain bike)
  • Do not share any equipment, food or water with anyone
  • Please carry hand sanitizer and regularly wash hands

After Your Ride / When you get home

  • Use Hand Sanitizer before you pack up & touch your other belongings or your car
  • Wash hands thoroughly when you get home
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (e.g. handlebars, brake levers and gear shifters)

YOU MUST REGISTER 24 HOURS IN ADVANCE. This is to ensure maximum group size.!/events/velodonnas-ride-signup

This week’s RIDE schedule:

  • Monday June 8th 6:30 PM – Road intervals with Cindy – Birds Hill Park main road. Meet at Pan Am start area (top of hill past East Gate, essentially where North Dr becomes South Dr.
  • Monday night Zwift ride is still happening. If you know, you know. 🙂
  • Wednesday June 10th 7:00 PM – Mountain Bike group ride with Emily P- Whittier Park. Meet in Fort Gibraltar parking lot.
  • Friday June 12th 7:00 PM – Mountain Bike group ride with Gill C – Bison Butte. Meet in the parking lot adjacent to (east side of) Cabella’s on Sterling Lyon.
  • Ride sign up link!/events/velodonnas-ride-signup


  • SAVE THE DATE! Road skills clinic – Monday June 15th 6:00 PM
  • Location TBD (Grande Pointe or Assiniboine Park)
  • Same rules apply. Sign up here (currently waiting for this link to go live):!/events/10235-2020-velodonnas-clinic-registration
  • More road skill clinics will be scheduled as needed. Mountain Bike & Cyclocross clinics will be scheduled too – stay tuned!