"I sprinted and I didn't look back" says the 22-year-old Pauline Ferrand-Prevot after taking the women's world title

France’s Pauline Ferrand-Prevot thanked the Germans and her Dutch trade team RaboLiv for helping her get her World Championship title in Ponferrada, Spain, today.

“I never expected to win,” Ferrand-Prevot said. “I was lucky that the German team rode for me. I had a very good lead-out from them, thank you!”

The 22-year-old added a rainbow jersey to her win in the Flèche Wallonne this April to close a very successful 2014 season. Though racing in France’s blue colours, she normally wears the orange colours of trade team RaboLiv, which includes three-time champion Marianne Vos.

“I was on the wheel of Vos for the sprint. When we saw her and the other three come back with one kilometre to go, I knew I had to stay on Marianne’s wheel. The wind came from the left side, and I went to the right side. I sprinted and I didn’t look back. I didn’t expect to win a sprint in the world championships,” continued Ferrand-Prevot.

“I thought the podium was lost, to be honest, when the group was away with Vos. I did not think our group would able to catch them, but the Germans worked hard. I am not a pure sprinter, but I followed Vos at two hundred metres and I was able to go around her.”

Vos won the last two years in Florence and Valkenburg, and in Salzburg in 2006. The 2014 edition was the first time since 2006 that she did not at least take a medal.

“I don’t think she was less strong today. Everyone was watching her, so it’s not easy for her,” Ferrand-Prevot added.

“I learned a lot from racing with Marianne the past three years. I want to say thank you to all the team-mates at RaboLiv team, they’ve taught me a lot.”