BMX rider, Caroline Buchanan, ahead of the London Olympics.

Caroline Buchanan. Photo: Rohan Thomson

BMX

From the humble dirt track in Tuggeranong to the biggest stage in the world – the dream of Olympic gold has been driving Caroline Buchanan for the past six years.

The desire for Olympic glory has been burning inside the 21-year-old since she was told she was too young to compete at the Beijing Games four years ago. Now she’s one of the fastest and best credentialled riders who will be on the starting line at the London track.

Buchanan is a two-time mountain bike world champion, the BMX time trial world champion, a seven-time Australian BMX champion and has been ranked in the top three riders in the world for the past three years. She’s ranked No. 2 behind French rider Magalie Pottier.

The challenge for the former Erindale College student is seeing if she can handle the pressure with the eyes of the world watching.

‘‘The only advice is that she just needs to be aware of not getting dragged from pillar to post,’’ Buchanan’s mentor, marathon legend Robert de Castella, said. ‘‘Caroline just needs confidence in what she’s been doing ... she’s done everything but it’s an unpredictable event.’’