Demoitie autopsy cannot confirm motorbike was cause of death

The death of Wanty Groupe-Gobert rider Antoine Demoitié cannot be blamed on the motorcycle which landed on him during Sunday’s Gent-Wevelgem, according to an autopsy conducted by officials in Dunkerque, France.

French police are investigating Demoitié’s death because the accident occurred on French roads as Gent-Wevelgem passed briefly through northern France before returning to Belgium.

Demoitié apparently crashed on the left side of the road with three other riders around 150km into the race near Sainte-Marie-Cappel. He was then hit by the motorbike.

“The cause of death was due to a blow to the back of the skull base, which resulted in death by cerebral haemorrhage but the pathologist cannot determine if the injury resulted from the rider’s crash or the moto’s impact,” attorney Eric Fouard said according to French news agency AFP.

“According to the forensic expert, death seemed inevitable due to the nature of the injury,” Fouard added, dispelling some reports that a 45-minute delay in emergency treatment had played a factor in his death.

The police investigation will continue in the coming weeks, with witness statements, the examination of the motorcycle and Demoitié’s bike to discover further details on how the accident and Demoitié’s death occurred.

The Wanty Groupe-Gobert team has refused to blame the motorbike driver for Demoitié’s on Monday when representitives talked to media.

The team opted not ride the Three Days of De Panne but will ride Sunday’s Tour of Flanders to in honour of Demoitié. They will also attend Demoitié’s funeral which will be held at 11:00 on Monday in Les Avins, south of Liège.

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