Young 17-year-old cyclist dies of a heart attack in the race

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Young 17-year-old cyclist dies of a heart attack in the race
Young 17-year-old cyclist dies of a heart attack in the race

Juan José Ortega, a 17-year-old Colombian, died last week in the Vuelta a Anapoima. During the second stage, the young cyclist fell ill when there were only 3 km to go to the finish line, he collapsed and passed out.

Immediately aided, he was transported by health personnel to the nearby Soacha clinic, but there was nothing they could do for him. According to the first hypotheses, reported by the local media, he may have had a heart attack, but in the next few days after the autopsy result it will probably be possible to have clearer ideas.

Juan José was a native of Bogota and had started pedaling as a boy, showing skills that boded well for his future especially as a climber. The president of the Cycling League of Bogota, Jairo Monroy, recalled that the young athlete came from mountain biking and was a complete racer.

Now he had decided to switch from fat wheels to road cycling and had begun to show his talents here too.

The other deaths of cyclists

Michael Goolaerts, a 23-year-old Belgian, was engaged in the Paris-Roubaix on Sunday 8 April 2018.

He fell ill, a heart attack in one of the first cobbled sectors, and after falling off his bike he was treated with a defibrillator. All in vain, he died a few hours later in the Lille hospital. Portuguese Bruno Neves suffered a cardiac arrest during the Clássica de Amarante and there was no escape for him either.

And in 2016 the case of Daan Myngheer, engaged in the first stage of the Criterium International in Corsica in Porto Vecchio. The youngster suffered a heart attack in the race and died aged just 22 a few days later in hospital in Ajaccio.

More recently the tragic end of the Tuscan professional Alessio Galletti. On 15 June 2005 a cardio-circulatory arrest was fatal 15 km from the arrival of the Subida at Naranco, in Spain, and despite being transported to hospital in Oviedo he was not saved.

Tommy Simpson, then 30 years old, during the 1967 Tour de France climbing Mont Ventoux. He collapsed on the asphalt due to the heat and the amphetamines he had taken, dying in a few moments.