“I think we’ve got some very real medal chances across the categories this year and I’m excited for the racing to start.
“In the elite men’s race, Danny Hart has a history of success on the Mont-Saint-Anne course, having taken third at the world cup last year and the victory at the world cup in 2016. Laurie Greenland, the 2015 junior world champion, has impressed this season, taking his first-ever victory at an elite world cup in Val di Sole last month. He, along with Matt Walker, are both showing excellent progression since stepping up to the elite ranks and are certainly ones to watch. They stand a chance of making it on to the podium this year, but even if they don’t the experience of competing against the worlds’ best elite men will support their development for the years to come.
“In the women’s event, it’s great to see Tahnee back from injury but similarly I know how disappointed Rachel Atherton is to miss out on defending her world champion title due to her injury – everyone at British Cycling wishes her a quick recovery. Tahnee won the first world cup of the season before sustaining her injury, and we can expect to see her back fresh and fully focussed on this event.
“This has been a breakthrough year for British Cycling and the support we’ve been able to offer the downhill riders. For the first time ever, we have been able to host a junior development camp at the Revolution Bike Park in Llangynog which gave ten high-performing junior riders the opportunity to undergo mechanic workshops, work on their lines through technical sections and to improve their communication methods to get the best out of their support team. The camp was a success, and it’ll be great to see the riders who attended put into practice what they learned over that weekend.”
“With the Olympics drawing nearer, the world championships in Mont-Saint-Anne are an important opportunity to rack up more qualification points and the team we have selected reflects that.
“Annie has had a mixed season so far, with illness and misfortune affecting her world cup performances, however, she can take confidence from the results she’s had at other races this year and also from the knowledge she won a silver medal on this course at the 2010 junior world championships.
“Evie has worked hard to come back from injury and is making remarkable progress, consistently finishing in second place at the world cups this season. The steep nature of the course will play to Evie’s climbing skills and, for similar reasons, will also suit Isla, who has impressed during her first year as a programme member.
“It was great to see Frazer step up and not only ride but dominate in the elite category at the national champions this year having had a difficult start to the season with an injury. Cam and Sean have both shown progression in their training and competition, and so these world championships are an opportunity for them to build on this and see where they are at against the best in the world.
“All three of the junior riders we have selected have excelled this season and I will be looking for them to cement this at the world championships.
“Finally, we will be entering a team into the mixed relay event and, thanks to the strength we have within the team across the categories, we stand a good chance of putting down a good performance to contribute to our all-important Olympic qualification campaign. The team names for the mixed relay will be confirmed nearer the time.”