Bjorg Lambrecht crashed after hitting road reflector

The 22-year-old suffered fatal injuries when he crashed during the Tour of Poland

(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Bjorg Lambrecht crashed after hitting a road reflector on stage three of the Tour of Poland, according to a prosecutor in Poland.

The 22-year-old Belgian rider died after he crashed 48km into the stage and hit a culvert, suffering serious internal injuries.

Authorities in Rybnik, where Lambrecht fell, have launched an investigation into the cause of the crash, according to Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad. (opens in new tab)

The deputy public prosecutor Malwina Pawela-Szendzielorz said: “Two riders who rode behind Lambrecht saw how he hit the reflector and lost control of his bike. He turned first to the right, then to the left, hit the road and hit the culvert.

“It is sad that reflectors, intended to improve road safety, are the cause of such a tragedy.”

The reflective road stud in Poland, used to separate lanes in darkness and bad weather, is 10 centimetres by 10 centimetres and sits 1.8 centimetres above the surface of the road.

Lotto-Soudal rider Lambrecht was resuscitated after the crash and was rushed to hospital, but the liver laceration he suffered caused an internal haemorrhage, which led to a cardiac arrest. He died during surgery.

The cycling world has been in shock since the death of the promising talent.

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His funeral was held in his home village of Knesselare, where members of the public and his team-mates all attended to pay tribute.

Lambrecht was riding his second season at WorldTour level and had been one of the great Belgian hopes.

He finished second in the under-23 World Championships last year and went on to ride to 12th in the Critérium du Dauphiné, taking the youth classification in the process.

Lambrecht also finished fifth in Brabantse Pijl earlier this year, following up with sixth in Amstel Gold Race and fourth in Flèche Wallone.

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Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.