Chiara Pierobon, of the Team Top Girls Fassa Bortolo died suddenly on Saturday while travelling to the Sparkassen Giro, the seventh round of the Women’s World Cup series.
According to a brief statement on the Italian teams’ website, the 22-year-old from Venice felt unwell during the long trip to Bochum in Germany. She passed away in hospital in Ngolstadt after receiving emergency medical treatment. The team said a pulmonary embolism could have been the cause of death. According to Gazzetta dello Sport Pierobon was due to represent Italy in the European road race championships in Tartu, Estonia next week.
She was in her third season with the Team Top Girls Fassa Bortolo and recently completed the Giro Rosa, finishing 36th overall and tenth in the best young rider competition.
The Sparkassen Giro women’s race went ahead as planned but with many riders and officials publishing messages of condolence via social media.
“I am shocked to hear about the death of Chiara Pierobon. Our deepest thoughts are with her family and friends” UCI President Brian Cookson said via Twitter.
“Sincere condolences to family, friends, Top Girls-Fassa Bortolo on extremely sad passing of #ChiaraPierobon too young,” UCI vice-president and President of the UCI Women’s Commission Tracey Gaudry wrote on Twitter.
Fellow Italian rider Valentina Scandolara wrote on Twitter: Speechless, frozen, can't believe it. Everything can change in a minute, hour, day. No time not to love and live life. Ciao @Chiara_Pierobon.