natural causes

What are we to make of this?

The item reports that a pro-cyclist Frank Vandenbroucke, 34, was recently found dead in a Senegalese hotel room while on holiday having “died from natural causes”. The rider suffered a double pulmonary embolism as well as having “an existing heart problem”.
The same article includes that the autopsy showed that the deceased had several injection marks on his left arm; syringes, alcohol and medicines were found in Vandenbroucke’s hotel room.

The NY Times :
“[In 2003] Belgian police raided his home and found illegal performance-enhancing drugs. They were for his dog, Vandenbroucke explained.
That earned him a suspension by the bicycling federation in Flanders, but not in Wallonia, where he was free to race for the Quick Step team. (It was not true, but widely believed, that in a daily stage of the Tour of Wallonia that passed through a village half-Flemish and half-Walloon, the pack rode on one side of the street — the Flemish side — and Vandenbroucke rode alone on the other side.)”

Wiki adds:
“… in December 2004 Vandenbroucke admitted taking growth hormones, EPO, amphetamine, morphine and steroids. He was found guilty in 2005 and sentenced to 200 hours of community service.”

Vandenbroucke has previous wins in Liège-Bastogne-Liège and Paris-Nice. Dead at 34.


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2 Responses to natural causes

  1. theboyg says:

    What sort of performances did he expect from his dog? Do you think Kurt Vonnegut Jnr thought of “Falloon” and “Grand Falloon” after hearing of the Walloons? Are any of us younger than 34?

    • Mark says:

      Interesting questions…

      And not the first time a dog has been implicated:
      “A raid on the clinic had revealed large numbers of frozen bags of blood, allegedly stored for the purposes of blood doping, each bag cryptically labelled. Among the hundreds of bags found, the bag labelled Brillo was to be of particular interest to fans of cycling.
      Brillo, it was claimed, was the name of Basso’s dog. Basso initially denied any wrongdoing but eventually, with just a couple of days to go before the race’s prologue, he was withdrawn from the race by his team.
      Later, Basso would confirm that the blood in the bag labelled Brillo was indeed his, although his confession would stop short of an admission of doping, claiming he had only planned to dope.”
      Clearly dogs ARE part of the problem.

      re Walloons: at least it is preferable to being Flemish, where apparently they speak phlegm.

      Age-wise: We are all on the wrong side of 34 and would be best to avoid any forms of performance enhancement besides Mars Bars and Banana milkshakes.

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