NORTH Richmond’s Danielle Beecroft has kept a pretty low profile, despite the fact she has climbed to the top of Australia’s downhill mountain biking rankings.
The 21-year-old loves what she does, and that mostly involves riding down mountains at high speed, the thought of which is enough to make many people squirm.
“Downhill mountain biking is raced against the clock down large mountains through tress and of massive rock drops and jumps,” Beecroft said.
“I started racing BMX at age six then at age 13 switched over to downhill mountain biking.”
For Beecroft, a 15-year proud Hawkesbury resident, downhill mountain biking is a huge thrill and even a devastating injury has not deterred her from the sport.
“I broke and dislocated my elbow in a World Cup race in Fort William, Scotland,” she said.
“They had to cut off the radius head in my elbow and replace it with a titanium one. I basically have a titanium elbow.”
It was a rather nasty injury, and one which still has lingering effects, but it was one Beecroft was determined to overcome and get back on her bike.
“I was told I would not be able to ride at elite level again. They were wrong,” she said.
“It took me three years to get back to where I was before the crash.
“I still to this day can't fully straighten or bend my arm fully back.”
Beecroft said it was a fairly routine jump which left her injured.
“I was jumping off a small size jump when a gust of wind blow me completely off the track landing on a pile of large rocks.” she said.
Despite such a nasty injury, it is passion for her chosen sport that continues to drive her.
“I love what I do. I wouldn't want to be doing anything else in the world,” she said.
Indeed, over the Easter weekend, Beecroft was in the United States racing in the NW Cup in Port Angeles, rather than relaxing at home like most of us.
She flew out on Wednesday to the United States, but will also compete in Canada in the not too distant future.
“I will race in the Sea Otter Classic [in California] as well as a couple of the US national downhill rounds, finishing off with some training in Whistler, British Columbia [Canada],” she said.
Beecroft said shortly before flying out to America, she had returned from New Zealand, where she had been competing, finishing third in the Crankworx Rotorua championship.
Before that, she said she won the Australian downhill series, and also Oceania championship last month.
Beecroft said her goal first and foremost was to ensure she got a factory ride in the future.
Following that, she has her sights set on claiming the world championship crown for her own.
“ I have finished second and third in the Junior World Championships and now sit ranked 15th in the world for Pro Women,” she said.
“I also compete in pump track, which I am currently ranked in the top three in the world.”