We’ve just got news that the British Cycling Federation is
to fund two of the country’s top young Downhillers, Helen Gaskell and Fionn Griffiths,
on a racing visit to the United States. Helen and Fionn, both 17, recently picked
up silver and bronze respectively in the Junior Women Downhill category at the World
Mountain Bike Championships in Spain.
The BCF don’t usually have the money to subsidise downhillers, as the World Class
Performance Plan money they have been allocated from the National Lottery via the
Sports Council only allows them to help out Cross Country mountainbikers (along with
road, time trial and track racers). However, to help the promising pair, the British
Cycling Federation has stepped in to fund travelling and racing expenses during their
stay in Vail, Colorado for the fifth round of the Mountain Bike World Cup on July
15th and 16th.
British Cycling Federation Chief Executive, Peter King, explained why the funding
had been made available:"Helen and Fionn are two of the most promising young
British riders in any cycling discipline at the moment. The performed brilliantly
at the World Championships and we are delighted to be able to help them at this crucial
point in their careers. Vail is the venue for next yearÇs World Championships and
so the experience of racing there and getting to know the course should prove invaluable."
Also assisting in America will be Hope, who are providing management and technical
support for Helen – whom they already sponsor – and Fionn throughout the trip.