Former U23 XC world champion's death comes two years after young SA road star Carla Swart lost her life...

South African mountain biker Burry Stander, who finished fifth in the Olympic cross-country race at Hadleigh Farm in Essex last summer and won the under-23 world championship in that discipline in 2009, has been killed at the age of 25. He was hit by a car - reportedly a taxi, according to local sources - as he headed home from a training ride.

Three months before the Olympic Games last summer, Stander got married to elite road cyclist Cherise Taylor, which the Specialized rider described as "the best moment of my life."

Cycling South Africa spokesperson Mylene Loumeau said: "He was returning from a training ride in Shelly Beach, on the KwaZulu-Natal south coast, and was hit by a vehicle.”

No further details are available as yet. Stander’s death comes almost two years after one of South Africa’s leading female riders, Carla Swart, was herself killed on a training ride. Swart, who had joined HTC-Highroad shortly before her death, was aged 23.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.