The only way is up for Stewartry’s Polly

Stewartry Wheelers junior star rider Polly Henderson tops the podium'Picture credit - Mark Goodwill

Stewartry Wheelers junior star rider Polly Henderson tops the podium'Picture credit - Mark Goodwill

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As the world’s best mountain bikers descended on Fort William for the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Scottish Cycling’s young stars showed the future of the sport is in very safe hands.

In windy conditions, 70 talented mountain bikers caught the eyes of the crowds as they competed for ScottishPower Race Series glory.

Each rider had to qualify for the Mini Downhill final through performances in previous events at Fort William, Comrie Croft, Aberfeldy, Innerleithen and Keilder Forest.

Stewartry Wheelers, a cycling club based in Castle Douglas, were celebrating as their rider Polly Henderson was the pick of the Under 14 defeating hot prospect Tea Jensen in the final.

After a busy weekend of Mountain Biking, Bob MacFarlane, ScottishPower National Youth Racing Series Events Officer for Scottish Cycling, praised the performances of the youngsters.

He said: “With some of the best mountain bikers in the world in Fort William, the young racers involved in the ScottishPower youth series really managed to get people talking.

“It was a tremendous weekend and the series has produced a group of athletes who are well prepared for serious competition thanks to the challenges and competition they face throughout the year. Many will make the step up next year.

“It is a huge showcase event and it is worth remembering that those involved today had to qualify for the event so we were seeing the best of the best in youth Scottish Mountain Biking. Each one of them did themselves very proud, it was a tremendous weekend. “

With more than 175 affiliated clubs across the country and more than 650 events to choose from it has never been easier to get involved. Visit www.scottishcycling.org.uk to find out how to contact your local clubs and find out more about the range of racing and coaching opportunities.