South African Jeanne Nell died after crashing while racing a keirin at the Bellville Velodrome in Cape Town on Wednesday night. He sustained fatal head injuries in a tragic fall during the race and died later in hospital.
A true gentleman and a champion of the sport, Nell represented South Africa with pride at the UCI Track World Cup in Manchester last year and was part of the South African squad for the upcoming Commonwealth Games. He was also the current Keirin national champion.
"The track cycling community is a close community, we're all like family. This is very sad news and we have lost a family member, who was a great role model and a true gentleman," said Cycling South Africa President and track cyclist William Newman.
Cycling SA Track Commission Director and friend Johan Smith said, "South Africa's cycling community today mourns the loss of not only one of its top sprinters, but even more so the loss of one of its most beloved sons. Jeanne will be missed for much more than his cycling talent. He was a true champion, and led by example, both on and off the track. Larger than life, he stole so many hearts with his boyish charm and exuberance. This is indeed a very, very sad day."
Cyclingnews extends its condolences to the friends, family and teammates of Jeanne Nell.