New Zealand In Mourning After Sudden Death Of Olympic Cyclist Aged 24
It's a sad, sad day for the cycling community.
Tributes have come flooding in for New Zealander Olivia Podmore, who suddenly passed away on Monday.
She was just 24 years of age.
Starting out as a BMX rider at age 8, Podmore quickly became one of New Zealand's top cyclists which culminated in representing her country at the 2016 Rio Olympics in the women's team sprint event.
She was also 2017 national keirin champion.
But the cycling community has been rocked by the news of her sudden death, confirmed by her brother who posted an emotional message to his beloved sister.
"Rest in peace to my gorgeous sister and loved daughter of Phil Podmore. You will be in our hearts forever," Olivia's brother Mitchell said via Facebook.
Her cause of death still remains unknown, although it's understood it has been referred to a coroner.
Words can't express how saddened we are to hear of the sudden death of Rio 2016 Olympian, Olivia Podmore.
Our thoughts are with her family, friends and @CyclingNZL. RIP pic.twitter.com/i1sKCI1CsM
- UCI Track Cycling (@UCI_Track) August 9, 2021
Cycling New Zealand also confirmed the tragic news in a statement.
"Cycling New Zealand, our riders and staff, are deeply saddened with the loss of one of our young cyclists. Olivia was a much loved and respected rider in our Cycling New Zealand squad," the statement read.
"At this time we are providing support to our staff and riders, the cycling community and those that were close to Olivia.
"Cycling New Zealand extend our deepest sympathies to Olivia's family at this time and we ask that media respect the privacy of Olivia's family, friends and our riders."
My heart breaks :broken_heart: for the lose of a young life. Sorry you were in pain. #RIP @livpodmore #NZcycling #Olympian Please reach out if you feel alone, are hurting, feel lost or helpless.
- Anna Meares (@AnnaMeares) August 9, 2021
The New Zealand Olympic Committee, who worked closely with Podmore throughout her career, paid their respects too.
The sport's national governing body said: "We offer our deepest condolences to family, friends and others in the NZ community who are grieving this loss.
"We are providing wellbeing support for members of her team and the wider team as we return home from Tokyo.
"Olivia represented New Zealand with honour and pride at both the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. She was a valued team member and her loss will be felt across the New Zealand Sporting Community."
Fans also flocked to social media to send their condolences.
The Oceania Cycling Confederation is deeply saddened by the loss of Olivia Podmore and offer our sincere condolences to her family, friends and the New Zealand cycling community. pic.twitter.com/5Fu4cmzmYR
- Oceania Cycling Confederation (@OceaniaCycling) August 9, 2021
I didn't know you Olivia but I saw you race many times. This is really Tragic news, thoughts are with you and those close to you :broken_heart::broken_heart::broken_heart: https://t.co/yddjvT4ofk
- nick owen (@nickowen5) August 9, 2021
Absolutely heartbreaking. A young woman who had everything to live for. https://t.co/4nCL4XRyQ2
- Chris Lynch (@chrislynchmedia) August 9, 2021
We may be a netball site but this is just heartbreaking.
Rio Olympics Kiwi cyclist Olivia Podmore has died age 24. Goes without saying - you never know what someone is going through underneath the surface.
Keep an eye on each other whānau x https://t.co/XaYnMZRjgC
- Netball Scoop (@NetballScoop) August 9, 2021
Our sport, our movement has lost another before their time :pensive:
Rest in peace Olivia Podmore
- Callum Skinner (@CallumSkinner) August 9, 2021
"Sport is an amazing outlet for so many people, it's a struggle, it's a fight but it's so joyous" - Olivia Podmore
- Niamh Fisher-Black (@N_FisherBlack) August 9, 2021
Devastated to hear that Olivia Podmore died today. She was so very loved.
- Emma Bryant (@ebryantnz) August 9, 2021
Condolences, so tragically sad :pensive::broken_heart:
- Jo 'Huge Depiction' V :flag_nz::heart: (@JoSmilesJo) August 9, 2021
With the sad news about NZ track sprinter Olivia Podmore, let's remember that athletes are human beings, and that sport carries a full range of triumphs and tragedies. Support your teammate/family member/friend/athlete. Reach out and check in. @SportsPsychISSP
- Dr. Carla Edwards (@Edwards10Carla) August 9, 2021
Gut wrenching. Please check in on your mates. Even if they appear fine on the outside, you just never know what's happening behind the scenes. https://t.co/qQqXVr2KJp
- John Mckenzie (@Johnmck419) August 9, 2021
Utterly heart breaking. Reach out to your mates, lend an ear, be there. No-one should be this alone. https://t.co/LelraTVVek
- D'Arcy (@DArcyWaldegrave) August 9, 2021
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/@liv_podmore/PA