Italian professional Cyclist Michele Scarponi has died after being involved in a collision with a van during a training ride on public roads near his home in Filottrano. Michele leaves behind a wife and two children, who my thoughts are with.
A rider for Team Astana, he won the 2011 Giro d’Italia and the opening stage of the Tour of the Alps just last week. He was well-known for training with his feathery friend Frankie, a macaw that matches the colours of the Astana team (blue and yellow).
…ancora in compagnia di Frankje😳😉 pic.twitter.com/1tU7fRtx9a
— Michele Scarponi (@MicheleScarponi) 27 January 2016
Michele only returned home the previous day to spend time with his family and went out on his bike the following day for an early morning training ride.
The van that Michele tragically collided with.
Astana announced the tragic news on Saturday morning:
This is a tragedy too big to be written. Here is the official press release of the Astana Pro Team https://t.co/TDNc6MkkD1 Ciao Michele.
— Astana Proteam (@AstanaTeam) 22 April 2017
Tributes are flooding in on social media, from fellow professionals through to the general public:
— Mark Cavendish (@MarkCavendish) 22 April 2017
— Dave McCaffrey (@davemccaffrey) 22 April 2017
My thoughts are with his family and friends. It is terrible to hear of any death, let alone another cyclist.