He was while descending the Passo Bocco 25km from the finish of stage three of the Giro d’Italia when his bicycle skidded and he was caught by other cyclists.
Paramedics attempted to revive the fatally injured sportsman for 40 minutes at the roadside after he had hit the tarmac at more than 60kmh and fractured his skull. They declared dead and taken to the nearest hospital.
Only 12 months ago, Weylandt, celebrated one of his greatest successes in winning the same stage of the Giro. He had been a professional for the last seven years and was expecting to become a father in September.
Passo Bocco is not a particularly climb, but the descent can be “treacherous” especially if wet.
Yesterday it was but many riders said that the road surface was extremely smooth.
Alberto Contador, reigning Tour de France champion, swiftly paid his respects saying, “It’s a terrible story and a dark day for the cycling family. Regardless of the fact each of us is in our own team, we are all in the same place and this is a very difficult day for the world of cycling.”
The Giro organizers decided to cancel the usual podium ceremony, which was won by fellow Spanish rider Angel Vicioso with Britain’s David Millar second to give him the overall lead.
“I can’t even imagine what his family are going through, it’s terrible,” the Scottish rider is reported to have said. “The bottom line is that the best guys in the world can have a mechanical fault or find themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time.”