Sport Cycling

Wednesday 21 February 2018

Olympic gold medal winner pens heartfelt tribute following tragic death of his mother

Chris Boardman penned a touching letter following the death of his mother
Chris Boardman penned a touching letter following the death of his mother

Kim Pilling

Olympic gold medallist Chris Boardman has paid a heartfelt tribute to his mother after she was killed in a cycling accident.

Carol Boardman was on her pedal bike when she was involved in a collision with a pick-up vehicle in Connah's Quay, North Wales, on Saturday.

She was taken to hospital with serious injuries but died in the early hours of Sunday.

Boardman, 47, who won individual pursuit gold at the 1992 Barcelona Games, announced her death on social media as he posted a full tribute on behalf of his family to Mrs Boardman - who he described as "the most positive outgoing person you could ever hope to meet".

He wrote: "A racing cyclist of some standing in her day, she gave up competitive riding when Lisa and I came along but she never lost her love of the bike or of competing. A stealth combatant and full of energy; mum was one of those individuals who could quietly turn anything into a contest.

"On the 10-minute walk to my nan's she would often force us to skip - it didn't feel as strange then as it sounds now - which inevitably turned into a dog-eat-dog contest, a woman and two children frantically speed skipping along a suburban pavement with a blue garden gate as the winning post. God knows what it looked like to people driving past.

Chris Boardman wears the Yellow Jersey during his competitive days
Chris Boardman wears the Yellow Jersey during his competitive days

"Our mum was the most positive outgoing person you could ever hope to meet and her generosity of spirit inspired everyone she met.

"Many of our childhood memories involve my mother and the outdoors, walking out over Hoylake sandbank, swimming in the deep gullies or hunting for fossils on Llandegla Moor in North Wales.

"Wanting to share her passion for cycling, even well into her 70s, she often took groups of young novices out on their first forays into North Wales.

"She leaves behind Keith, her partner for more than half a century, Lisa and I, and a large, loving family. We cannot yet conceive a world without her in it.

"We love you Carol, may the wind be ever at your back."

The tribute was featured in full at the end of ITV4's Tour de France Highlights show on Sunday.

The Hoylake-born father-of-six has featured as a pundit in the station's coverage of the event but flew home to the UK on Saturday following the accident.

His ITV broadcasting colleague Ned Boulting tweeted: "I'm so sorry Chris. You and your family are uppermost in our thoughts here in France."

Bob Howden, president of British Cycling - which Boardman is policy adviser to - said: "This is truly awful news and my thoughts, and those of everyone at British Cycling, are with Carol's family."

Sir Gary Verity, who helped bring the Tour de France to Yorkshire in 2014, was among those sending their condolences online.

He wrote on Twitter: "Devastating news. Sending our thoughts & prayers. Condolences from all your friends in Yorkshire."

Philip Walton tweeted: "Carol Boardman was one of the loveliest women you could wish to meet. The cycling community & the world is a poorer place without her. RIP."

Scott O'Brien said: "So sad to hear of the death of the nicest lady in #cycling. Carol Boardman died today after being hit by a car yesterday #rip"

Police said they were called to the collision scene at the roundabout in Mold Road with the junction of Ffordd Llanarth at 1.54pm.

The pick-up vehicle involved in the collision was a white Mitsubishi L200.

A spokeswoman for North Wales Police said: "Police are renewing their appeal for anybody who may have witnessed the collision to contact officers on 101, quoting reference number U104385."

Press Association

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