Young British rider, Ben Tulett, earned his stripes this weekend as he took the Junior Cyclo-Cross title at this weekend's UCI World Championship title in Valkenberg. In an emotional interview after the race, he dedicated the win to his friend and rival Charlie Craig, who tragically died in his sleep just over a year ago.
Aged just 15, Charlie was the son of former National Champion Nick Craig, and the Under-16 National Trophy Cyclocross Series winner. The 2016 season saw Charlie go from strength to strength, and many were tipping him to go on to become a world-class rider. Yesterday, however, it was his friend Ben who took that honour.
The 2018 Cyclo-Cross World Championship saw Ben (younger brother of Dan Tulett) winning the Men's Junior Race and the famous rainbow jersey. Last year, the title was won by another young Brit - Tom Pidcock - and what a year's he's had, winning more titles on the track and road as well as cyclo-cross.
At the 2017 World Cylco-Cross Championships, Ben Tulett's older brother Dan came second to Tom Pidcock taking the silver as Great Britain completed a clean sweep of the podium, with Ben Turner coming third. All three ride in the Under-23 race today, where Pidcock - current holder of the title in the Under-23 category - is the clear favourite.
Baby-faced Ben started racing competitively through the London Cross League. We witnessed him crashing in horrible, slippery conditions at the Rapha London Super Cross competition back in 2015 and ending up in hospital with a fractured wrist.
Yesterday, European bronze medallist, Ben, took the lead with two laps to go and held on to win by 22 seconds despite a strong challenge from Czech rider Tomas Kopecky. Britain's Evie Richards collapsed after winning the women's Under-23 event in Valkenberg.
Favourite Evie, who won the title in 2016 and finished third last year, was carried to the medical tent but recovered to stand on the podium in the Netherlands.
You can see a lovely video tribute to Charlie Craig above and find out more or donate to his legacy fund to support young riders at rideforcharlie.com:
"Charlie was a special boy who went to sleep on Friday the 20 January and didn’t wake up, he was 15. He left his family and friends in a state of shock and an incredible hole in our hearts. We miss him more every day.
"Our aim is to support young off road cyclists, who are or would have been inspired by Charlie to follow in his pedal strokes. Our vision is to allocate funding to self motivated young individuals, who will be appraised for eligibility by the trustees.
"We want to hear from young boys and girls age 14 and above who ride off-road bikes and have been inspired by stories of Charlie and his life."