It has been confirmed that 21-year-old Belgian cyclist, Frederiek Nolf, died in his sleep on Wednesday night. Nolf was at the Tour of Qatar riding for his team, Topsport Vlaanderen Mercator. According to team officials he was found dead in his hotel bed.
The cause of death is not yet known. Nolf joined the team two years ago and the Tour of Qatar was his first race of the season. Speaking to the Associated Press, team manager Christophe Sercu was adamant that the rider was drug free – pointing out that every rider on the team was tested every four months for doping.
Nolf had no apparent health problems and his team will be grimly aware that his death in such circumstances will for many be a sad echo of the early days of EPO usage when a number of professional cyclists died in their sleep due to mistakes over the correct dosage.
Plucked from the obscurity of his London commute back in the mid-Nineties to live in Bath and edit bike mags our man made the jump to the interweb back in 2006 as launch editor of a large cycling website somewhat confusingly named after a piece of navigational equipment. He came up with the idea for road.cc mainly to avoid being told what to do… Oh dear, issues there then. Tony tries to ride his bike every day and if he doesn't he gets grumpy, he likes carbon, but owns steel, and wants titanium. When not on his bike or eating cake Tony spends his time looking for new ways to annoy the road.cc team. He's remarkably good at it.