Richards and Last narrowly miss out on a podium spot in Mont-Saint-Anne

Richards and Last narrowly miss out on a podium spot in Mont-Saint-Anne

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Evie Richards and Annie Last overcame adversity to take fourth and sixth in the under-23 and elite women’s races at the 2019 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships in Mont-Saint-Anne, Canada.

On the final day of competition for the cross-country riders at the event, Richards managed to fight her way up to the front group almost immediately on the first lap.

The under-23 rider slipped her pedal at the start and ended up back in the bunch from the go, sprinting her way through the first short lap to regain position.

Having slipped from the front group on lap two back into sixth, Richards battled hard over the remaining three laps to take fourth on the line.

Last had a great start from the second row of the grid and had worked her way into eighth position in the elite women’s race before suffering a puncture on the second lap.

Damage limitation through a quick wheel change saw Last end up back in 16th, and the following four laps would show her tenacity by moving up ten places into sixth overall.

The Nottingham-born rider impressively moved up four places of the ten in the penultimate lap of the elite women’s race.

Scotland’s Isla Short was pulled from the race with two laps remaining. Having started the race towards the rear of the bunch, the young-rider was forced to chase the race but was inevitably swallowed up by the leading riders finishing 46th.

Fellow-Scot, Grant Ferguson displayed a phenomenal effort in the men’s race, gaining 32 places on the rest of the starting riders.

Having started from the rear of the bunch and crossing the line in 70th position at the beginning of his seven long laps, he showed heart to battle his way through the race.

The under-23 men’s race finished with Frazer Clacherty in 14th after a superb performance working his way through the race, with Cameron Orr taking 19th on Friday, as Sean Flynn was unlucky not to finish.

Thursday’s racing saw Charlie Aldridge crowned the new junior men’s cross-country mountain bike world champion. Harry Birchill also finished 17th in the junior men’s race.

In the junior women’s race, last year’s bronze medallist Hattie Harnden finished the race in 12th, as Anna McGorum finished in 15th place who fought her way through as many places as possible as the race went on, moving from her initial rank of 30 to a top 15 performance.

In Wednesday’s racing, the Great Britain team registered a fantastic sixth in the team relay.

The five riders, Charlie Aldridge, Frazer Clacherty, Evie Richards, Annie Last and Grant Ferguson all produced a flying lap of the technical course do register the result.

The racing can be followed via live timing on the UCI website here.

Competition continues Sunday 1 September with the downhill competition. The elite downhill races will be broadcast on RedBull TV.

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