The She Wolf Attack Team (S.W.A.T.) is a women’s cycling club and development team based in Los Angeles committed to inspiring more women to ride, race and be a part of the cycling community. S.W.A.T. hosts weekly night rides on Tuesdays and Thursdays and co-hosts women’s night every Friday at the Encino Velodrome. We met founder Susie Lowber at Interbike this year and were inspired by her love of cycling and her all out passion for leading rides though the dark streets of LA. The S.W.A.T. motto says it all: “The strength of the pack is in the wolf and the strength of the wolf is in the pack.”
Tell me a bit about S.W.A.T. How did it get started?
S.W.A.T. started from a monthly Tuesday day night Women’s ride (the C U Next Tuesday ride) where we explored the city at night, at a fast pace, often ending with donuts or beers. Friendships grew and the idea to start our own race team was born. Over the course of about a year and a half a monthly ride turned into a cycling club with two weekly rides, and four race teams: Cyclocross, Track, Road and Street.
Who turns out for the rides?
We have a diverse group of women who turn out for the rides, ranging in age from 16 to 50 from different parts of town and all sorts of backgrounds.
How often do you ride?
We have two weekly rides. A fast paced Tuesday night and a beginner friendly Thursday night. A lot of us also ride together on the weekends and Friday nights at the velodrome.
How do you get the word out about the rides?
It’s mostly word of mouth but we also use social media. We have a Facebook group where ride details are posted, as well as a fan page
What sort of riding do you do, what sort of bikes/riders?
Tuesday nights are fast so it’s mostly modern road bikes and fixies. Thursdays are a more casual pace so we get a bigger mix; hybrids, cyclocross and vintage road bikes mixed in with the road and fixies.
How did you find out about our lights?
We met the Fortified team at Interbike this year. Most fun I’ve ever had in Vegas. Bikes bikes bikes.
Do you have any long term goals for S.W.A.T.?
S.W.A.T. has a life of its own now, It keeps growing in ways I never expected. My only goal is that we always stay true to our roots and always act as positive ambassadors for women’s cycling.
What person, living or dead, would you like to see show up for a Tuesday night ride?
Alfonsina Strada, a genuine badass. In the 1920s she broke the rules and rode the Giro d’Italia. She snuck into the race registering under the name Alfonsin and by the time the race organizers found out it was too late. Newspaper writers called her “The Devil in a Dress”. On the third day she crashed and didn’t make the time cut but continued to ride and finished. To this day she’s the only women to ride the Giro. She’s the definition of “so swat!”
Got questions for the She Wolf Attack Team? Leave it as a comment!