Tuesday, 10 May 2011
Yesterday, cycling lost a young hero in a descending crash of the Giro D’Italia’s Stage 3 from Reggio Emilia to Rapallo. Wouter Weylandt, 26 and already a seasoned, Belgian, pack rider lost his way, descending from the main climb of the day. The accident led to a head injury which resulted in such a loss of blood that emergency medics - despite their efforts - could not resuscitate him.
Deaths within the professional circuit are infrequent, Weylandt was wearing a helmet and despite its technicality, the descent from Passo Del Bocco was not an extreme challenge. Road rash is commonplace, but fatalities in professional cycling are extremely rare; thus, it is the sheer nature of this accident that brings home the risks that professional cyclists undertake willingly, and the skills they possess to stay out of harms way. Unfortunately, even the greatest of cyclists can be put in adverse, potentially life-threatening situations in a moment of misjudgement or by a simple mechanical failure.
The weight of this tragic occurrence is sure to cast a shadow over this years Giro as well as our entire sport, and with today’s race neutralised we can reflect on the life, career and courage of Wouter Weylandt with the upmost admiration and respect. RIP.
Photo - Road Bike Review