Belgian professional Frank Vandenbroucke has died, aged 34, whilst on holiday in Senegal.
Classics specialist Vandenbroucke, known to fans simply as VDB, amassed an impressive array of wins during the heyday of his career in the Nineties. He has wins at Het Volk, Ghent-Wevelgem, Paris-Nice, Liege-Bastogne-Liege and Paris-Brussels in his palmarès.
Belgian media report the cause of death as pulmonary embolism.
Since the Nineties, Vandenbroucke had suffered numerous troubles, ranging from recreational drug problems to attempted suicide.
Although he had attempted several comebacks to professional cycling in recent years, he could not regain the form that saw him as a major force in cycling a decade ago.
Serge Baguet, a former Belgian professional, met Vandenbroucke in the early part of his career.
"Frank was one of the biggest talents that I ever saw in my life," Baguet explained to Cycling Weekly.
"He started in the Lotto-team where I was riding in those days, he was 19-years-old and showed the cycling world immediately that he was a great rider. He was able to be on the podium of the Tour de France. Armstrong and Frank are the most talented bike riders that I saw in my career, the first one won the Tour several times, the other one is dead now. It's unbelievable".
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Nigel Wynn worked as associate editor on CyclingWeekly.com, he worked almost single-handedly on the Cycling Weekly website in its early days. His passion for cycling, his writing and his creativity, as well as his hard work and dedication, were the original driving force behind the website’s success. Without him, CyclingWeekly.com would certainly not exist on the size and scale that it enjoys today. Nigel sadly passed away, following a brave battle with a cancer-related illness, in 2018. He was a highly valued colleague, and more importantly, n exceptional person to work with - his presence is sorely missed.
Best bicycle insurance, including what you need to know and how to compare
Wondering how to protect your pride and joy? Our helpful guide tells you all you need to know about bicycle insurance
By Hannah Bussey • Published
Five talking points from stage eleven of the Giro d’Italia 2022
The Cycling Weekly highlights package from the stage which finally saw an Italian win at the home race this year
By Luke Friend • Published