More Ladies Race La Leyenda
The challenge of taking on La Leyenda, South America's most important mountain bike event, is well known amongst professional and amateur racers alike, but we've taken great pride in seeing ever increasing numbers of women want to participate in the race. Since La Leyenda's inception in 2016, we've doubled the numbers of ladies amongst our starters year on year, most of whom want to push their limits, enjoy the unique race atmosphere, stunning scenery, and say they've become a Finisher, after seven stages of memorable mountain biking.
One of these ladies in 2019 was Kathy Jaramillo, an amateur rider from Cali, Colombia, where La Leyenda 2020 will start and finish. Kathy had completed other mountain bike events in Costa Rica and Germany before taking on La Leyenda with her husband, Baptiste, from Belgium in the mixed category. Kathy told us,
"Participating in La Leyenda as a woman was very empowering. It showed me that with desire, discipline and confidence we can also accomplish whatever challenge we we want to overcome, I never considered that being a woman in La Leyenda affected my preparation or experience."
With mountain biking's growing reach and appeal to ladies, La Leyenda has two categories available for amateurs to compete in, Open Ladies, and also the Mixed category, which has proven very popular with couples like Kathy and Baptiste. Many couples have told us how enjoyable the experience has been for them and even enhanced their relationships. This was especially the case in 2017 when the Queen Stage featured a marriage proposal between two riders, Juan David Palacios and Juliana Salazar, at the race summit!
"Racing as a couple is an experience I would definitely recommend. It's the best and most enjoyable form of therapy! Baptiste and I learned to put the roles of gender aside to work together and we complemented each other as a team, which makes any goal much more achievable. Racing as a couple can also help create new bonds and interests that strengthen a relationship," added Kathy.
With achievable cut off times for each stage, two exclusive categories, and all the logistics on offer to make the Leyenda experience as enjoyable and memorable as possible, we know we'll see even more ladies on the start line in Cali for La Leyenda 2020 to help grow female mountain biking both in Colombia and around the world.