From left: Poppy Lane, Erice Van Leuven and Sacha Earnest. Photo: UCI

Champions of the World

It’s hard to remember a more special moment in mountain biking than the one we witnessed yesterday. Erice van Leuvan – newly garbed in the rainbow jersey – stretching the flag of New Zealand wide over Sacha Earnest and Poppy Lane, grinning through tears of pure adrenaline elation. 

The three fastest girls in Aotearoa – and now the world.

Poppy was first out of the starting gate, laying down a fast run that sent her into the hotseat. Sascha came in just 0.417 seconds behind and into second. But it was Erice van Leuven who, even after a slipped pedal at the top of the course, raced into first in a time of 5:17.024 .

“It was insane!” said Erice. “Best time of my life for sure, I’m so stoked!”