Police appeal for witnesses after cyclist dies during Velo 2019 event

The man in his fifties was taken to hospital but later died

A 50-year-old man has died during the Velo 2019 cycling event, and police are appealing for witnesses with information to come forward.

The man is understood to have come off his bike at the 23-mile mark at 7.50am in Atherstone, Warwickshire.

Police have said the section of road where the incident occurred is rural with a steep descent, as well as tight left and right hand bends.

The man was taken to hospital but later died. His next of kin have been informed and officers are supporting the family.

More than 17,000 people were taking part in the 100-mile cycling event, where roads were closed off as riders set off from Birmingham City Centre, through Coventry over the cobbled roads surrounding the cathedral, and out into the countryside surrounding Solihull, Warwickshire, Dudley and Sandwell.

Sergeant Shaun Bridle from Warwickshire Police said: “While investigations are ongoing to establish the circumstances surrounding this tragic incident, we are keen to speak to anyone who may have witnessed it.

“We are particularly trying to identify any cyclists who may have seen anything or who may have GoPro camera footage from around the time of the incident to please get in touch.

“Our thoughts remain with the victim’s family at this difficult time.”

Last year, a 69-year-old man died during the 2018 RideLondon-Surrey 100 sportive. Nigel Buchan-Swanson suffered a cardiac arrest at around the 56-mile mark on Ockley Road near Dorking.

In 2017, 67-year-old Maris Ozols died whilst taking on the 46 mile route, also after a cardiac arrest, on Cromwell Road at the 13-mile mark.

A donation page set up in his memory raised over £5,000 for the British Heart Foundation.