This article was originally published on Cyclingnews.com.
Tahnee Seagrave (Great Britain) descended to victory in the junior women's downhill at the UCI Mountain Bike Championships in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa on Friday. Australia earned the rest of the medals with Danielle Beecroft and Tegan Molloy getting silver and bronze.
"This means more than anything to me in the world," said Seagrave. "I'm an elite next year, and I've been looking to bring good results this year."
A small field of only five junior women contested the world championship event on a partly cloudy, cool, dusty and windy morning. Ayako Nakagawa (Japan) was the first woman down the mountain. Her time was quickly bettered by Molloy, who was hot on her heels with a 5:11.449.
"The wind was good on my run. It was a little gusty for the tables, but apart from that, it was fine. The pedalling section was the most challenging part," said Molloy.
Beecroft became the next occupant of the hot seat with a time of 4:59.513, improving the best time by more than 11 seconds, but the last woman down the mountain, Seagrave, knocked her out of it with a time of 4:52.001. Seagrave was 7.5 seconds quicker than Beecroft.
Beecroft said, "Yesterday, the track was pretty blown out, but they patched it up for today. The track was real fast for our race fun, but that pedalling section was such a killer. I was knackered. I put everything into it."
Seagrave said she didn't really know where she made up her time. "I just tried to not go too fast. I was really nervous and so scared of crashing," she said.
"At the top I wasn't thinking too much, I was trying to block everything out, but I was thinking of the pedal section the whole way. I was like 'oh god, it's getting closer'. My front wheel was about to wash out at once point, and I had to breath and tell myself it would be ok."
"Every time I went to sit down, I'd think of the red light at the finish line. I didn't wanted that."
Her strategy worked as she got the green light, signifying that she had the best time as she rolled across the finish.