Lizzie follows in Beryl’s tracks

Lizzie Armitstead (left) crossing the start-finish line in first place to win the Women's Elite road circuit cycling race

Lizzie Armitstead (left) crossing the start-finish line in first place to win the Women's Elite road circuit cycling race

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OTLEY cyclist Lizzie Armistead was crowned women’s road race world champion at the weekend as she followed in the tyre tracks of Leeds cycling legend Beryl Burton.

Armistead, 26, described Saturday’s win in a dramatic sprint finish at the UCI World Road Championships in Richmond, Virginia in America, as a “dream come true.”

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The victory saw her become the fourth British woman to win the road race world championships - after Beryl Burton, Mandy Jones and Nicole Cooke.

Beryl Burton, who was born in the Halton area of Leeds and lived in Morley, was world road race champion in 1960 and 1967.

After claiming the rainbow jersey, an emotional Armistead said: “This is the big one, the most special thing in cycling,” she said. “It’s a dream come true.”

British Cycling president Bob Howden said: “This is a landmark moment in the history of British Cycling.

“Lizzie represents the best of our great sport and deserves all of the praise coming her way. Her coolness under pressure in that final kilometre is the hallmark of all the great champions of cycling.

“She was the pride of Yorkshire and Great Britain already - now she’s the best in the world.

“I was very proud to have been there to see it in person, and in the company of Jonny Clay, now cycle sport and membership director at British Cycling, who spotted Lizzie’s potential when she was still at school in Otley.”

Mark Cavendish tweeted: “Absolutely lost for words! Incredible! Massive congrats!”

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