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Wouter Weylandt, 1984-2011

Wouter Weylandt (BEL), 26, Leopard-Trek

Teams:
2004 Quick-Step-Davitamon (Stagiare)
2005-2010 Quick-Step
2011 Leopard-Trek

2004
1st, GP Waregem U23 (BEL)
1st, Ronde van Vlaanderen U23 (BEL)
3rd, Paris-Roubaix Espoirs (FRA)
3rd, E3-Prijs Harelbeke U23 (BEL)

2005
1st, GP Briek Schotte (BEL)

2006
1st, Points Classification Tour de Pologne

2007
1st, stage 3 Driedaagse de West-Vlaanderen (BEL)
1st, Ronde van het Groene Hart (NED)
1st, stage 1 Ronde van Belgie (BEL)
1st, stage 1 Ster Elektrotoer (NED)
1st, stage 1 Heusden O-Vlaanderen (BEL)
1st, stage 4 Benelux Tour (NED)

2008
1st, stage 1 Tour of Qatar TTT
1st, Nokere Koerse (BEL)
3rd, Gent-Wevelgem (BEL)
1st, stage 17 Vuelta a España
1st, Omloop Wase Scheldeboorden (BEL)

2009
1st, GP Fina – Fayt-le-Franc (BEL)
1st, stage 3 Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen (BEL)
11th, Paris-Roubaix (FRA)

2010
1st, stage 3 Giro d’Italia
1st, Profkoers Sint-Niclaas (BEL)
1st, stage 4 Circuit Franco-Belge (BEL)

Belgian professional Wouter Weylandt was a successful racer capable of winning grand-tour stages but happy to give his all for others. He died on Monday after a crash on stage 3 of the 2011 Giro d’Italia.

Weylandt found success early in his career. In his second U23 season, in 2004, he won three World Cups, including the Ronde van Vlaanderen U23, and finished third at the Paris-Roubaix Espoirs after flatting twice.

He joined Quick Step-Davitamon as a stagiare for the fall and signed his first professional contract ahead of the 2005 season. Weylandt’s arrival to the professional ranks was slowed by health problems in January, but after missing the first half of the year he returned in August and won his first pro race in September, the GP Briek Schotte. A year later the Belgian wore the leader’s jersey of the Tour of Poland and finished the tour with the sprinter’s shirt.

Weylandt earned seven wins in 2007, including the opening stage of the Tour of Belgium, but his true breakthrough was in 2008. That year, the Belgian workhorse earned his top classics result at Gent-Wevelgem, finishing third. After teammates Tom Boonen and Paolo Bettini took a pair of stages each, Weylandt pulled his first grand-tour win in the third week of the 2008 Vuelta a España.

2011 Dwars Door Vlaanderen, Wouter Weylandt
2011 Dwars Door Vlaanderen, Wouter Weylandt. Photo: Graham Watson | grahamwatson.com
In 2009 he supported teammate Tom Boonen’s Paris-Roubaix win, riding to his own 11th-place finish.

Weylandt’s second grand-tour stage win came in stage 3 of the 2010 Giro d’Italia when he outkicked Graeme Brown and Robert Förster in the bunch sprint in Middleburg, Netherlands.

He left the team where he’d ridden each of his professional seasons after 2010, joining upstart Leopard-Trek as a key member of the classics squad supporting Fabian Cancellara.

Garmin-Cervélo sprinter Tyler Farrar has called Weylandt his best friend in the European peloton.

Weylandt’s girlfriend, Sophie, is expecting the couple’s first child in September.