On May 9, 2011, as most of the cycling world has seen by now, during the third stage of the Giro d’Italia, a 173-kilometer trip from Reggio Emilia to Rappallo, we witnessed a tragic event. Wouter Weylandt, a young Belgian sprinter for the Leopard-Trek team, crashed on the descent of the Passo del Bocco. Weylandt’s hit a wall at the side of the road with his pedal, causing him to unceremoniously crash.
Just one year ago, Weylandt sprinted to victory in the Giro’s third stage. Cycling, with its triumphs and tribulations, is often referred to as a metaphor for life, but stage 3 of this year’s Giro proved to be more than metaphor, as the world witnessed the untimely death of the 26 year-old.
We know from our polls that 60% of you consider yourselves pure cyclocrossers, and only a mere 15% of you call yourselves roadies. We make fun of each other, each other’s discipline, equipment, routines and heroes. But at moments like these, we no longer are ’crossers, roadies, mountain bikers or track racers. We are all cyclists; one of our brethren has fallen and we stand in solidarity at the world’s great loss.
From all of those at Cyclocross Magazine, we send our thoughts, prayers and condolences to Weylandt’s family and friends. Wouter Weylandt, you’ll be missed.