Cyclist Gino Mäder, 26, dies following crash down ravine

Swiss cyclist Gino Mäder died Friday after being found unconscious following a crash down a ravine at his home Tour de Suisse race. He was 26.

Mäder’s team, Bahrain-Victorious, said he died at the hospital, where he had been airlifted after Thursday’s crash.

“We are devastated by the loss of our exceptional cyclist, Gino Mäder,” Bahrain-Victorious managing director Milan Eržen said in a statement. “His talent, dedication, and enthusiasm were an inspiration to us all. Not only was he an extremely talented cyclist, but a great person off the bike. We extend our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones, and our thoughts are with them during this difficult time.”

Mäder and another rider, Magnus Sheffield of the United States, went off the road near the same spot on a fast descent approaching the end of the mountainous fifth stage into La Punt.

Medical staff who reached Mäder found him motionless in water. They performed CPR, with race organizers saying Mäder was resuscitated before he was airlifted to the hospital.

“The cycling community has today lost a promising young rider who was destined to be part of important chapters of our sport,” the International Cycling Union (UCI) said in a statement. “The UCI is deeply shocked and would like to express its sincere condolences to Gino Mäder’s family, friends and team.”

Sheffield suffered a concussion and bruises and was treated at a local hospital, organizers said.

Mäder’s death was announced about 30 minutes before the scheduled start of the sixth stage in the eight-day Tour de Suisse. The start was delayed, and riders gathered in a silent tribute before the stage was canceled.

Race organizers said the peloton would ride together in tribute to Mäder for the final 18 miles of Friday’s scheduled route. The race should resume Saturday.

“Devastated by the news,” said world champion Remco Evenepoel. “My heart and strength is with Gino’s family, friends, teammates.”

Evenepoel had criticized Thursday’s stage on Twitter, writing, “While a summit finish would have been perfectly possible, it wasn’t a good decision to let us finish down this dangerous descent. As riders, we should also think about the risks we take going down a mountain.”

Mäder joined the Bahrain-Victorious team in 2021 and won a stage of the Giro d’Italia that year. He also won the young rider classification at the 2021 Vuelta a España.

Eržen said the team would continue in the race in Mäder’s honor.

“We are determined to show the spirit and passion Gino displayed, and he will always remain an integral part of our team,” Eržen said.

Information from The Associated Press and Reuters was used in this report.

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