Belgian media have today reported the death of Dimitri De Fauw, who took his own life in as-yet unknown circumstances.
The Belgian track and road rider, who made a name for himself racing six-day track races during the European off-season, was only 28 years old.
De Fauw returned to Belgium from the Six-days of Grenoble in France yesterday (5 October). He had placed seventh in the competition together with the Dane Marc Hester.
Iljo Keisse, another six-day rider and friend of De Fauw, drove back home with him and Gianni Meersman on Wednesday night. "I dropped De Fauw off at his home in Gent at 8am and we still laughed together," he told Sporza. "I did not find him any different from usual. 'I'll call you to go training,' he told me."
De Fauw was mostly active on the track but also rode road races. He was with team Quick Step from 2003 to 2005 and moved to Chocolade Jacques in 2006. That year, he had a terrible accident during the Gent Six-day, when he collided with Spanish rider Isaac Galvez, who died of his injuries. De Fauw struggled with depression afterwards.
Keisse described his friend as "a funny guy". He said: "He only very seldom spoke about serious things. There were days when he laughed, fooled around and did crazy things, and then there were days when he was quieter."