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Johannesburg - The death of cyclist Burry Stander, who was struck by a vehicle in KwaZulu Natal, is a loss for South Africa, the Inkatha Freedom Party said on Friday.
“Stander leaves behind a legacy that not only he and his family can be proud of but that the entire South Africa holds in deep admiration,” said IFP sport and recreation spokesman Mkhuleko Hlengwa in a statement.
“His cycling credentials, from South Africa to Beijing to London, speak for themselves.”
South African mountainbike ace Stander died in a crash on Thursday.
He was returning from a training rid in Shelly Beach on the KZN South Coast when he was hit by a vehicle, according to Cycling SA.
Police were investigating the killing.
Stander narrowly missed out on a medal at the London Olympics.
Four years earlier, at the Beijing Games, he had proved his ability when he finished 15th in the cross country event at the age of 20.
The following season he rose to prominence on the global stage when he won the Under-23 title in the Mountainbike World Cup series.
In 2011, Stander became the first South African to win the Cape Epic stage race in the Western Cape, with Swiss partner Christoph Sauser, and the pair defended their title in 2012.
“The loss of such a young life that had so much potential ahead of him is very sad. We salute Burry for having represented South Africa on the world stage on some many occasions,” Hlengwa said. - Sapa