TUCSON, Ariz. — Promising cyclist Chad Young died from injuries sustained during a high-speed crash at the Tour of Gila, the first American rider to die in a prominent North American stage race in nearly two decades. Young was 21.
His team, Axeon Hagens Berman, said Young died late Friday in Tucson, Arizona.
The team said he was involved in a crash last Sunday during the queen stage of the New Mexico race. Medics were on the scene within minutes and Young was airlifted to a hospital in Tucson, where he was initially listed in stable condition.
Young was downgraded to critical on Tuesday when the extent of his head injuries became clear.
The last American rider to die from injuries sustained in a major North American competition was Nicole Reinhart, who crashed during a race in 2000 in Arlington, Massachusetts.
Collegiate rider Randall Fox was killed last year during a race near Seattle.
ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) Three-time world road race champion Peter Sagan of Slovakia has confirmed he will compete in the Tour Down Under in January, the opening World Tour event of the season.
Sagan won the world title last month for the third straight year, becoming the first cyclist to do so. He competed in the Tour Down Under for the first time last year, finishing second on three stages behind Australian sprinter Caleb Ewan.
Sagan, who rides for the BORA-hansgrohe team, said the six-stage Tour Down Under is “the perfect start to the UCI World Tour season each year … a challenging and tough course, warm weather and the passionate fans that cheer for us day in day out no matter what.”
SANTA ROSA, Calif. (AP) Former Olympic road cycling champion Samuel Sanchez, who returned a positive doping test in August, had his B-sample confirmed Wednesday and was promptly fired by the BMC Racing Team.
Sanchez’s out-of-competition test revealed growth hormone-releasing peptide 2, or GHRP-2, a drug that increases a body’s level of growth hormone. Several cyclists have tested positive for the drug, among them Italian rider Stefano Pirazzi, who was given a four-year ban earlier this week.
The U.S.-based BMC Team said in a statement Wednesday that it was adhering to its zero-tolerance policy toward doping by terminating the Spaniard’s contract “with immediate effect.”
The 39-year-old Sanchez, who had been provisionally suspended, won gold at the 2008 Beijing Games.