Road To 2012
Annie Last Sixth At Mountain Bike World Cup
Words And Photography By Luke Webber
Posted August 14 2011
In another historic moment for British cross country mountain biking, Annie Last has scored sixth place at round six of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup - the best international result for a British woman since 2002 and Caroline Alexander.
One week on from finishing second at the European Championships in the under-23 category, Last returned to the senior ranks on the World Cup circuit in the Czech Republic.
Speaking exclusively to British Cycling following the European Championships, Last focussed on the difference racing at the front of a World Cup could make to the finishing position and immediately heeded her own advice.
Moving into the top ten on the opening lap, Last entered the final lap looking for a podium position, riding alongside Eva Lechner in fifth position. Ultimately, Last lost a couple of seconds before the line to finish sixth, but demonstrated her podium potential at the highest level of the sport for the first time.
Having already collected a string of top thirty and top twenty placings, the significance of the British Cycling Olympic Academy rider one year out from the London 2012 is remarkable; such progression could provide Britain its first female representation in the Olympic mountain bike race since Sydney 2000.