• Neve Bradbury of Roxsolt-Attaquer (Roxsolt Attaquer)Source: Roxsolt Attaquer
Australian Neve Bradbury, 18, was the women's winner of the 2020 Zwift Academy and will take up a professional contract with Canyon-SRAM in the new year.
By
SBS Cycling Central

21 Dec 2020 - 7:47 AM 

Bradbury, 18, made it through to the final group of five riders who competed for the Canyon-SRAM contract. In the end, she beat Great Britain's Nicole Coates, New Zealand's Kate McCarthy, Germany's Eva Marie Hering, and Colombia's Natalia Franco Villegas.

Bradbury is the fifth winner of the Zwift Academy, following fellow Australian Jessica Pratt in 2019, Ella Harris in 2018, Tanja Erath in 2017 and Leah Thorvilson in 2016.

It’s not certain if Pratt will be back there next year alongside her with plans for 2021 not confirmed. Bradbury said during the Finals that Tiffany Cromwell (Canyon-SRAM) was one of her heroes and she’ll be riding alongside the established Australian professional next season.

The 18-year-old worked her way through the qualifying stage to the final group of five vying for the overall prize of a professional contract, working through the Finals process of interviews, rides and races with Canyon-SRAM looking to find the athlete who is the best fit with the team.

Bradbury was just off a tough set of races at the National Road Series in the Tweed with Roxsolt-Attaquer, where she won the sixth day of competition into Mooball, skipping away up the final climb and winning solo comfortably.

Bradbury soloes to memorable maiden victory
Neve Bradbury (Roxsolt-Attaquer) showcased her potential as a rider of the future, and of the present, with a solo win on Day 6 of women's racing at the National Road Series being staged on the Tweed Coast.

Bradbury faced a tough challenge from New Zealander Kate McCarthy in the Zwift Academy Final, with the police officer from across the Tasman finishing just behind Bradbury in the points race, her 17 points just behind the Australian’s 18.

Bradbury then bided her time behind McCarthy in the flat portion of the time trial, before jumping away on the climb to the line where her significant climbing abilities came to the fore. The Victorian powered away and posted a 20-second win.

When it was announced that Bradbury had won, the young Victorian looked beside herself and couldn’t take the smile off her face.

“To say I’m stoked is an understatement, it’s unreal. I’m so excited,” said Bradbury.

When asked for her highlight of the finals process, Bradbury highlighted the chance to interact with the Canyon-SRAM riders.

“I say earlier talking to the pros,” said Bradbury. “I was just babbling the whole time, to think that I’m soon going to be a pro is crazy. That was a really cool experience.”

On the men's side, Jay Vine made it a double success for Australia, with the Nero Continental rider winning through the Zwift Academy to claim a spot on Alpecin-Fenix for 2021.