A Belgian cyclocross coach has committed suicide after one of his young riders tested positive for a banned substance.
The coach, referred to only as Eddie V., was found dead on Wednesday, the day after 17-year-old Fabio Verberckmoes, who he coached, was informed the he had tested positive for a banned substance.
Verberckmoes’s positive sample was taken after a race in Oleye, near Liège, on December 18, just a couple of weeks after his family say he started working with a new coach.
“Three days before the race in Oleye, where Fabio was caught, the coach came to pick him up at home, in order to prepare him with a first ‘vitamin injection’,” Fabio’s father Philippe Verberckmoes told Het Laatste Nieuws.
“I asked him if it was allowed but he dismissed my concerns. ‘No fear, Phil. I’ve done this so many times,’ he said, while Fabio got into his car.”
Verberckmoes has been fired by his Cycling.be-Alphamotorhomes team, and could face a maximum ban of four years.