World Cup Countdown – The Brits – Amira Mellor


Still only a junior but a winner of the Durham round of the Women’s National Trophy, Amira Mellor says World Cup will be amazing

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World Cup Countdown – The Brits – Amira Mellor

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On the start line in the World Cup at Milton Keynes will be a talented former triathlete who is making rapid progress in the World of Cyclo-Cross; Amira Mellor.


Amira sprints to victory while her mum celebrates and Annie Simpson realises the win wasn’t to be at Durham

The Junior was still celebrating a wonderful victory in the Women’s National Trophy at Durham when she spoke to VeloUK. The win is something she has been so close to doing on so many occasions in the last year and with no Junior World Cup for Women, Amira gets the chance to race alongside her heroines in the sport of cyclo-cross.

Amira told VeloUK in Durham that “it’s good for my confidence to get a win like this because I’ve not won a national race yet”. It won’t be the first that Amira wins either but rather the first of many I expect as she moves from the Junior to Senior ranks in the coming years.

This Saturday though, Amira, wearing the colours of her country, will be surrounded by the Worlds elte women with no pressure except to enjoy and learn.

Asked what it was like to be selected to ride the World Cup, Amira says “it was amazing! I nearly cried but didn’t! I was just so excited to be picked. It’s unbelievable. At the beginning of September I set a few aims for the Cross season and being selected for Milton Keynes was one of them”.

“I knew that as a Junior it was a bit of a long shot, but after a few good results in the national trophies, I started to realise that I could actually get picked. I kept in contact with Stuart Blunt, the GB selector, about whether or not Juniors could get picked”.


“He gave nothing away until at the Supercross in London, he said to me, ‘expect an email early next week’. I was pretty excited when he said that but I still wanted to see the email to check it for real!”

Amira has come from triathlon into cyclo-cross and starting her racing in Yorkshire, she found the likes of ‘cross legend Chris Young and others were keen to encourage the young lady to work hard at the sport and the result is Amira is now one of the hot talents in the sport going places.

Amira explained she does a lot of technical skills work on Wednesday night sessions which she admits has really helped her improve her cornering, hurdling work and running. “I do a lot of skills work but in race scenarios so it’s under pressure as well” Amira added.

“I have stepped up my game this year. Last year I was getting some top fives in the elite women and I decided to concentrate on ‘cross as it’s what I really want to do.”

Going back to her win at Durham, Amira says of that race “there were quite a few of us together at the front and then one by one they started to drop off. Around one of the corners, I knew I was stronger than Annie (Simpson) because she was taking a different line to me”.

“I knew on the last lap, I was going to go for it there. I got underneath her on the corner and she made a little mistake and I knew I just had to keep going and not look behind!”

With her mum jumping up and down in the background, Amira sprinted for the line as Annie Simpson conceded defeated and sportingly clapped as Amira crossed the line for the victory. Looking ahead to this Saturday, Amira says the atmosphere is going to be amazing and so wonderful to be a part of.” It will be good to see where I am on the world level” Amira explained.

“I went over to Belgium with a Yorkshire team led by Chris Young to do a Superprestige and I’m going to do another next week to get another taste of international racing which will be very different to the National Series”.


Very different indeed and in that Superprestige, Amira was 13th with many an international rider behind her. Being a junior in an Elite Women’s race, Amira knows there is no pressure on her from anyone else other than herself and is both nervous and excited.

“I put a lot of pressure on myself but I’m trying to tell myself to enjoy the whole experience and absorb as much learning as possible. It’s hard though when I’m so competitive! I think at the end of the day, the result will matter to me but I just need to keep reminding myself that I will be in this category for many years and am now still only a Junior”.

“I am also so excited about the race and starting against the best in the World. I have always struggled with nerves and this season I have been targeting arriving at the start as relaxed as possible and just believing in my ability. My friends always joke about my ‘start line face’, that if they talk to me I give them this deadly face! Hopefully at Milton Keynes I will go to the start with a smile on my face!”

“The race should be amazing and I have no doubt that the whole Yorkshire Cross crew will turn up screaming their heads off for all the Yorkshire riders!”

Amira is hoping to have a lighter set of bikes to carry up the hills at Milton Keynes and that too can only help her compete with her more illustrious rivals. Final question was about what her ambitions were in cycling? “I want to be a ‘cross rider” came the reply.

“I think that is my favourite. I’d like to go to Belgium and do the World Cups in a pro team. There are so many British females out there who are inspiring especially when they come and talk to you at World Cups and that”.

I am sure Amira will get plenty of encouragement from the likes of Helen Wyman and Nikki Harris etc at the World Cup and surely it won’t be long before she herself is making a name for herself on the World stage just as Helen, Nikki and others have before her.

Good luck Amira!

Further Information: World Cup Website

WHERE: Campbell Park, Milton Keynes (Near the shopping centre)

World Cup – Saturday 29th November, 2014
9am – Official Training
10am – Junior Support Race (40 mins)
12.30 – Women’s World Cup
2pm – Elite Men’s World Cup

National Trophy, C2 Men & Women – Sunday 30th November 2014

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