Promising young cyclist killed in bizarre race accident

A young Flemish cyclist is dead after he was run down by a delivery van during a race in Tournai on Sunday. 

Three young cyclists were injured during the collision.  It is believed that they were sent in the wrong direction towards an intersection that hadn't been secured.

The accident happened during the Mémorial Alfred Gadenne, a race for promising young talent.  The rider, Stef Loos, who died was 19. He was taken to hospital with serious injuries where he later succumbed.

Jef Robert, the president of the Acrog-Pauwelssauzen - Balen BC team of which Loos formed a part: "His injuries were so serious he couldn't make it."

"A group of 30, 40 riders broke into three parts.  Stef and the two others were in the third group.  At one point the riders had to turn right, but there was nobody to signal this.  The group of 30, 40 thought they had to continue straight ahead."

"They didn't realise they were no longer on the race route.  They ended up on a dangerous intersection.  They thought they were still in the race and drivers had to give way.  A van coming from the right crashed into them."

"The delivery van driver didn't know a race was underway.  He had not been notified.

The two other injured riders are not in any danger.  Prosecutors are now establishing what exactly happened. A car with jury members also drove after the riders and then stopped.  What exactly happened is unclear.

Jef Robert: "Stef Loos had been a member of the BC Balen team for seven years.  He was a model rider, who worked very hard for his team.  It's impressed upon us today that cycling is dangerous sport."

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