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Could Elynor Backstedt win first gold for Great Britain at the 2019 World Champs?

Joseph Delves
26 Sep 2019

Already a bronze medallist in the junior time trial, Backstedt will be riding for the win Friday's road race. Photo: SWPix.com

The women’s junior road race which takes place on Friday may represent Britain's first, and possibly best, chance for a gold at our home World Championships. With both the men’s and women’s elite squads facing an uphill battle at the weekend, it’s been left to the youngsters to carry an outsize weight of expectation.

Primarily this has fallen on ever-rising star Tom Pidcock, who’ll be competing in the men’s under-23 race later on the same day. With many people viewing him as the current favourite in his event, Team GB also has another less-heralded medal contender in the form of youngster Elynor Backstedt.

Having already scored a bronze in the time trial this Tuesday, the 17-year-old has now made gold in the junior road race her explicit aim.

In chasing the win, she’ll be looking to round out an already excellent season. Having taken two golds at the UEC European Junior Track Championships, along with a victory at the Gent–Wevelgem Junioren road race, this May she also gained experience by competing with the elites at the Tour de Yorkshire.

The daughter of Swedish cyclist and Paris-Roubaix winner Magnus, she comes from a family of cyclists, with sister Zoe also a talented racer.

Clearly on great form, Elynor was only 10 seconds off the winner around the slippery and technical World Champs TT earlier this week, despite almost crashing in the wet conditions.

Part of the five-person British team for the road race, they’ll face competition from the Dutch riders. Hopefully, home support around the 92km course will help swing it for her this Friday.