Charlotte Worthington with her gold medal at Tokyo 2020

Charlotte Worthington’s BMX ride won gold and broke Olympic records

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Charlotte Worthington took another gold for Team GB in the BMX freestyle at the Tokyo Olympics and made history by becoming the first woman to land a trick. Watch her seriously impressive ride here.  

You’ve probably seen the name Charlotte Worthington trending over the weekend. The reason everyone can’t stop talking about her? She just made history at the Tokyo Olympics by landing a never-done-before trick - the 360 backflip.

As if landing a flip by itself wasn’t enough, the 360 backflip - known as the ‘holy grail’ in women’s BMX - sees the rider spin in a circle in the air while upside down. And Worthington nailed it. 

To see her impressive display of sportsmanship, watch the video: 

If you’re done gawping, you might also be interested to know that it took even more bravery than you might think. Having fallen on her first attempt, Worthington dusted herself off and, seemingly unphased, attempted the mind-blowing move again. In fact, she said she’d only managed to land it “a few times” on training surfaces, and landed it for the first time ever on the wooden competition surface earlier in training in Tokyo.

This display of determination won her the gold medal and a score of 97.50, the highest across both men’s and women’s BMX events.

“It was incredible. I’ve not been doing that trick for that long, but we’ve been trying to find that big banger trick and when we found it we were like, ‘I think this is the one’,” Worthington told the BBC after her win. ​​”I’ve learned if you gamble and give yourself that chance then it can pay off and you’ll feel better than if you hold back.” 

Sunday’s impressive win came just two days after Bethany Shriever took gold in BMX racing. In total, Team GB have racked up an impressive medal collection in the sport with two gold medals, a silver and a bronze.

The best thing about these wins is that they prove BMX cycling is accessible for almost everyone. Worthington took up BMXing just five years ago, aged 20, while Shriever self-funded her Olympic dream. Whether you think you’d enjoy the thrill of speeding down ramps or prefer a longer cycle through the countryside, there are over 1700 clubs across British Cycling. We’re not saying you’ll land the 360 backflip, but Worthington proves you’ve got to give it a shot. 

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Chloe Gray

Chloe Gray is the senior writer for stylist.co.uk's fitness brand Strong Women. When she's not writing or lifting weights, she's most likely found practicing handstands, sipping a gin and tonic or eating peanut butter straight out of the jar (not all at the same time).

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