Sunday, June 26, 2022
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Frank Vandenbroucke


Frank Vandenbroucke
Looking cool with tats and tanlines.

“RIP VDB” said the text from John Stollery, waiting for me, when I woke up; there were others too, from Dave and Stevie all expressing sadness – for all his faults,
Frank Vandenbroucke was a hard man to dislike.

He was just 34, cause of death is cited as a ‘blood clot.’

Vandenbroucke could hardly have been anything else but a pro cyclist – his dad was a pro and his uncle, Jean Luc, was a junior world champion and pro road star.

Belgian novice champion in 1991; junior champion in ’92, “Franky Boy” moved seamlessly through the ranks.

His first pro win came in ’94 – a stage in the Tour of the Med. By the end of the following season he was winning Paris-Brussels. In 1996 he took Laigueglia, the Scheldeprijs and Plouay.

The following season he was winning events as diverse as the De Panne beach mountain bike race, Cologne and the Tour of Luxembourg.

Gent – Wevelgem and Paris – Nice fell to him in ’98. And in ’99 things went even better; Het Volk, Liege-Bastogne-Liege and two Vuelta stages – a majestic season.