It’s Queensland Women’s Week, and we’re shining the spotlight on the talented women involved in motorcycle sport. Today we’re meeting Debbie Douglas, a very busy lady who works tirelessly in the background of the Queensland Enduro scene.
Tell us a little bit about your involvement on the Queensland Enduro scene?
I have been on the Enduro Subcommittee for the past four years and have had the pleasure of working with some very dedicated and committed fellow committee members, riders, clubs, promoters and supporters. I think we have achieved quite a lot in that time, especially in the area of communication with the riders and listening to their needs.
I work a lot with the behind the scenes co-ordination and promotion of events throughout Queensland, but in particular, Central Queensland. I am the Administrator of both the “Enduro Queensland” and “Central Queensland Enduro” Facebook pages, which have really brought the riders together. I am usually the link between the riders and the administration, spending a lot of time assisting new riders and parents with their transition into the sport. Having been a parent of a rider, official and club committee member I have a good perspective on all facets of the sport, and I am aware of the difficulties experienced across the board.
I co-ordinate and organise our Queensland A4DE teams. As the Central Queensland delegate I think one of my proudest moments would have been working with Mr Paul Warr and Mr Brent Williams to host last year’s Central Queensland Junior Development Clinic in Yeppoon. With the help of so many of my wonderful friends and colleges we successfully brought together over 110 juniors (including over 20 girls) and the smiles on their faces said it all- as to why I stay involved in this sport, and why it is so very rewarding. To get up on the second day of the clinic to cook breakfast for the children and have half a dozen sitting there with you bouncing off walls with enthusiasm was just amazing. It shows there is a future in the sport and that there are female riders coming through.
I am part of a wonderful Queensland Enduro team and could achieve nothing without their support and input and for that I am eternally grateful.
How long have you been involved in Motorcycle Sport? What made you get involved?
I have been involved for the past 12 years, becoming involved through the participation of my children and good friends. Previously I was involved in Athletics as an Athletics North Queensland Board Members and Central Queensland Development Officer.
What do you enjoy most about volunteering in the Queensland Enduro Scene?
I really enjoy the Queensland Enduro Family. I have made amazing life-long friends. They are generally supportive of each other and work well together. All sports need volunteers and would not survive without them. Volunteering is so rewarding and you learn so much. I have been a part of some incredible achievements and seen first-hand our Queensland riders and my children reach their goals. This sport and volunteering has given me a lot of enjoyment and memories over the years and I guess my involvement is to keep it progressing so it is around stronger than ever for when my grandchildren become involved.
Do you have any favourite female riders?
I could not say any female rider is my favourite as I have the greatest respect for any female rider who gives dirt bike racing a go in a mainly male dominated sport.
Of course our own Queensland lady riders are closest to my heart and I really enjoy seeing them achieve and helping them out. Where they stand out is they are always willing to give back to the sport – Jemma Wilson, Tamara Gray, Melissa Bruce, Tanya Herne and my own Central Queensland pocket dynamo Ainsleigh Ross - are only ever a phone call away if you ever need a role model, ambassador or a mentor for females new to the sport.
What would you say to women who are thinking about ‘having a go’ at motorcycling?
I would say do it, you will never know if you don’t try and women have come a long way and achieved so much in the last 10 years.
Why do you think Women’s Week is important?
It celebrates the achievements of women and proves that they can compete and play an equal part in whatever they do. It also encourages them to have a go, become involved and take advantage of any opportunities that arise.
What do you do outside of the Queensland motorcycle scene?
My family and close friends take up any other spare time I have. They mean the world to me, so I try to catch up as often as I can.