The 194 riders who took the Sunday morning starting line for Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne paid tribute to Belgian cyclist Frederiek Nolf who died in his sleep on February 5 at the Tour of Qatar.
A few hundred meters after the start, the peloton made a stop in Kuurne at the house of Nolf's parents for a brief tribute before returning to complete the 193 kilometers of racing.
Nolf, 21 years old, was found dead in his bed by his sporting director, Jean-Pierre Heynderickx, who spoke of "unexpected and inexplicable tragedy" as the rider "seemed in good health", as reported by AFP.
Nolf became a professional in 2008 with Topsport Vlaanderen. As a junior he had very good results and his most successful year was 2005. Among others, he won the overall of the Route de l'Avenir that year and finished second in the Ronde van Vlaanderen for juniors.