Bethany Shriever of Britain claims world title weeks after Olympic gold

Britain's BMX racing Olympic champion Bethany Shriever won the world championship title on Sunday with a superb performance in Papendal in the Netherlands, after a three-rider crash ended Alise Willoughby's hopes of retaining her crown.

Bethany Shriever of Britain wins the world championship title in BMX racing.   -  REUTERS

Britain's BMX racing Olympic champion Bethany Shriever won the world championship title on Sunday with a superb performance in Papendal in the Netherlands, after a three-rider crash ended Alise Willoughby's hopes of retaining her crown.

Shriever, who once worked as a teaching assistant to fund her riding, sprang a major surprise when she dethroned Colombia's BMX queen Mariana Pajon to win gold in a thrilling race around one lap at the 2020 Tokyo Games last month.

On Sunday, she claimed the world title after a blistering start from lane eight, surging ahead in the opening turn where Americans Felicia Stancil and Willoughby crashed after coming together with Swiss rider Zoe Claessens.

READ: BMX cycling Olympics finals: Kimmann, Shriever win golds  

Judy Baauw and Laura Smulders of the Netherlands took the silver and bronze.

"I've been riding consistently and I just wanted to go out there and have a good time, like I did in Tokyo," Shriever told the BBC.

"I went in gate eight, I was relaxed and happy. I had an alright start and just managed to dig in and take the win... Another gold medal -- I can't believe it."

Niek Kimmann of the Netherlands matched Shriever's Olympic and world championship double by winning the men's race ahead of Frenchman Sylvain Andre and Swiss David Graf.

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