MALVERN’S cycling sensation Evie Richards has been formally recognised for her Commonwealth Games success by Malvern Hills District Council.

The 21-year-old represented Team England at the games on Australia’s Gold Coast and claimed a silver medal in the women's mountain bike cross country race.

It is the first major championship medal for the former Chase School pupil who is already a double world champion at under-23 level and multiple British champion.

In honour of her achievement, Malvern Hills District Council invited Evie to attend Tuesday’s annual council meeting so they could formally congratulate her.

To hearty applause from the councillors, she was also presented with a special certificate of recognition on behalf of the people of the district.

Speaking after the meeting, Evie said the support she had received from her home town had been amazing.

She said: “I can’t believe how much it means to everyone, and I just want to thank everyone for being so behind me.

“I have never been so emotional on the podium before, I had tears in my eyes. The Commonwealth Games has always been such a big dream of mine; I just couldn’t believe what I had achieved. Seeing all my family crying in the crowd too made it even more special being able to share the moment with them.”

Evie now hopes to represent Team GB at the Olympics in Tokyo in 2020, and she also has her sights set on gold when Birmingham hosts the Commonwealth Games in 2022.

“Of course the Olympics has always been a massive goal and I feel like it's slowly creeping up on me. However, I still have lots of world cups, national championships and world championships to race before Tokyo, which will help me prepare for the big day. It is so exciting that Birmingham will be holding the next Commonwealth Games - it will be amazing to have it so close to home.”

Council chairman Chris O’Donnell said: “Evie is not only a fantastic role model and ambassador for her sport and her country, but for Malvern and this district too.

“We are incredibly proud of Evie and wish her continued success both in and away from the sporting arena. I hope her exploits will inspire the next generation of Evie Richards’s to realise their dreams.”