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Belgian dies in Illinois training race

A Tuesday night training race turned tragic this week when a rider collided with a pole, crashed and died in Chicago. Pieter Ombregt, 27, of Chicago's north side, crashed into a metal fence during a race organised by the South Chicago Wheelmen and later died of his injuries after undergoing surgery at an area hospital. According to the Daily Southtown, Ombregt was an experienced racer on the regional XXX Racing AthletiCo team, and the race was being held on a closed, private road that has seen no serious incidents in its 15 year history. His death was ruled an accident by the Cook County medical examiner's office.

The death is the second tragic loss for the area racing team, after Beth Kobeszka died as a result of a crash in June. The team's spokesman Shane Winn told the newspaper, "It's an awful difficult thing for a team to deal with one tragedy, let alone two in such a short period. We're all in shock at the moment."

Ombregt, who lived in Chicago with his fiancée, was an accomplished photographer. The team is planning a service on Monday. Cyclingnews extends its deepest condolences to the family and friends of Ombregt.

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