The Giro d’Italia today remembered Belgian cyclist Wouter Weylandt, who died one year ago during the race’s third stage. The organiser held a minute’s silence in Horsens, Denmark, following Weylandt’s favourite song, Sex on Fire.

“For Wouter we are having a party,” race director, Michele Acquarone told Cycling Weekly. “We want to remember when he won in Middelburg in the third stage two years ago, not when he died in Rapallo last year.”

Racing for team Quick Step, Weylandt took his biggest career win in the Giro d’Italia in 2010. The race started in Amsterdam, travelled through the countryside, where he won the final stage before a transfer into Italy.

On May 9 last year, racing for Leopard-Trek, the 26-year-old crashed on the descent of the Passo del Bocco. He hit his head and died almost instantly. It was the fourth death in the race’s 100-year history.

Giro organiser RCS Sport has permanently retired the race number 108, which he was wearing last year. It also decided to dedicate the third stage to him every year.

“His number 108 is no longer in the race, which means he’s always in the race with his number,” Acquarone said. “For his memory it’s great, but it’s hard, it’s not easy.”

Acquarone dined with Weylandt’s family last night. Today, they attended the stage start.

“They said that they think it will be the last time they watch a race because when they went to the races, they cheered for him. Now, they feel empty.”

The race also honoured Jan Trojborg, the mayor of Horsens who died yesterday due to a heart attack. The 56-year-old left two children and his wife.

“It’s important to enjoy life every day,” Acquarone added, “because it can all go in a minute.”





Riders pay tribute to Wouter Weylandt in Horsens prior to stage three of the 2012 Giro d’Italia

Related links



Stage two: Cavendish wins Giro stage in Herning



Stage two photo gallery



Stage one: Phinney wins opening TT



Giro d’Italia 2012: Coverage index

Giro d’Italia 2012: Latest news



Cavendish faces first Grand Tour as World Champ and father



Frank Schleck’s last minute Giro adventure



Swift out of Giro after training crash



Giro d’Italia 2012: Who will win?



Sky to battle for Giro’s team time trial



Hesjedal aims for Giro win



Giro d’Italia 2012: Start list



Cavendish, Thomas, Kennaugh, Swift and Stannard for Giro



Giro d’Italia 2012: Jerseys unveiled



Giro d’Italia organiser announces wildcard teams for 2012



Giro d’Italia 2012 route revealed

Giro d’Italia 2012: Live coverage



Giro d’Italia 2012 live text coverage schedule

Giro d’Italia 2012: Teams and riders



Giro d’Italia 2012 start list

Giro d’Italia 2012: TV guide



Giro d’Italia 2012: British Eurosport TV schedule

 

  • Ioan

    Well done, Matthew and Milltag. What a wonderful guetsre and a demonstration that the cycling world is international in its support for that distraught lady and unborn child.