Olympic cyclist, Olivia Podmore who represented her country (New Zealand) at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil is now dead at the age of 24.
Olivia Podmore passed away suddenly just hours after writing a sad post on her Instagram page, where she spoke about the “struggle” and “rejections” that come with elite sport.
Podmore was not picked to ride in Tokyo but did compete at the world championships last year and represented New Zealand in the women’s sprint event in Rio.
In the since-deleted Instagram post on her page, she wrote:
“Sport is an amazing outlet for so many people, it’s a struggle, it’s a fight but it’s so joyous.
“The feeling when you win is unlike any other, but the feeling when you lose, when you don’t get selected even when you qualify, when [you’re] injured, when you don’t meet society’s expectations such a owning a house, marriage, kids all because [you’re] trying to give everything to your sport is also unlike any other.”
Her heartbroken brother, Mitchell Podmore posted a heartbreaking tribute to her on social media:
“Rest in peace to my gorgeous sister and loved daughter of Phil Podmore. You will be in our hearts forever.”
Cycling New Zealand had released a statement on Monday evening, August 9, saying they were deeply saddened with the loss of “one of our young cyclists”.
“At this time we are providing support to our staff and riders, the cycling community and those that were close to Olivia.
“Cycling New Zealand extend our deepest sympathies to Olivia’s family at this time and we ask that the media respect the privacy of Olivia’s family, friends and our riders.
“Olivia represented New Zealand with honour and pride at both the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
“She was a valued team member and her loss will be felt across the New Zealand Sporting Community.”
A police spokesperson also confirmed they had received a report about a sudden death at a property in Cambridge, New Zealand early on Monday evening.
“Police are making enquiries in relation to the death on behalf of the coroner,”
the spokesman added.
“Olivia was a much loved and respected rider in our Cycling New Zealand squad.