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Former British champion Phil Edwards dies aged 67

Phil Edwards riding the 1968 Giro d'Italia

Phil Edwards riding the 1968 Giro d'Italia (Image credit: Sirotti)

Former British national road race champion and former teammate of Francesco Moser, Phil Edwards, has died at the age of 67 following a suspected heart attack, according to a report Edwards passed away early on Monday morning at his home in Monte Carlo. He is survived by his wife and two children.

Edwards was born on September 3, 1949, in Bristol, England. He showed his promise early by winning the junior national road race title in 1967 and won a string of domestic races the following season. He would continue to be a prolific winner on the British scene, taking several stage wins at the Milk Race (the pre-cursor to the Tour of Britain) among many others. In 1969, he won the Frank Southall scholarship, while led to him spending two seasons racing in the Netherlands.

In 1972, Edwards was selected for the Great Britain Olympic squad for the Games in Munich. He finished the race in sixth place, just behind his teammate Phil Bayton, with Hennie Kuiper taking the victory.

Edwards’ mother was an Italian immigrant who fled the country for the UK during the World War two and, after she contacted Ernesto Colnago, he spent time as an amateur racing in Italy for the GS Leone squad. His winning ways would continue on the continent and he secured a spot on Francesco Moser’s GS Sanson squad in 1976.

In 1977, he added the elite national road race title to the junior title he’d won 10 years previously. He came close to a stage win at the Giro d’Italia the following season, while his leader Moser finished third overall, and took victory in a stage of the Volta a Catalunya. Edwards would support Moser through five Giro d’Italia campaigns and played a key role for the Italian in the Classics. A contract was on the table for the 1981 season, but he chose to hang up his bike at the end of 1980.

Edwards has lived in Monaco for several years and ran a restaurant with his daughter.

His funeral will be held in Monte Carlo on Friday, April 28.

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