Irish club cyclist dies during Tour of Flanders sportive

Pat Coyle suffered a suspected heart attack when climbing the Kwaremont

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An Irish club cyclist has died after suffering a suspected heart attack during the Tour of Flanders sportive yesterday (Saturday, April 2).

Pat Coyle, 56, fell ill and collapsed when ascending Oude Kwaremont, 25 kilometres from the sportive’s finished in Oudenaarde.

Medics provided immediate aid to the well-known Irishman, who is thought to have been riding with his son, but they were unable to save him.

It was the Shannonside CC rider’s 14th ride in the annual sportive which attracted 16,000 riders this year for what was the sportive’s 25th anniversary.

Cycling Ireland released a statement, saying: “Cycling Ireland would like to extend their condolences to the family of Pat Coyle of Shannonside CC, Athlone, who died at the Tour of Flanders Sportive in Belgium yesterday following a heart attack.

“The tragedy occurred during the 227km event that attracts 16,000 riders, and is in its 25th year, an event in which he had participated many times.

“Mr Coyle had been an active member of Shannonside Cycling Club, who was particularly committed to the development of the club, having been a key organiser in events like the Operation Transformation cycle in Athlone in 2015.”

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Chris Marshall-Bell

Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.

Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.