The cycling world is deeply shocked. On Monday August 9, the International Cycling Union announced the death of Olivia Podmore at just 24 years old. A track cyclist, the New Zealander participated in the Rio Olympics in 2016, and had an impressive record for her young age. Absent from the Tokyo Games, for which she had not been selected, the young woman committed suicide, announced one of her friends. “If you had seen Olivia in the last 72 hours, you would not have thought that what happened would happen,” said Eric Murray, New Zealand rower, who also reported that Olivia Podmore had left a letter to his relatives before taking his own life.
“With her last words, Olivia left us a message. A message that we wish never to be read by anyone else,” he said, reports The Mirror, while no details were disclosed. In a last Instagram post, Olivia Podmore hinted that her sanity was not in good shape, writing that “sport is an incredible outlet”, but that “the feeling when you win is unlike any other, but the feeling when you lose, when you are not selected even when you qualify, when you get hurt, when you do not meet society’s expectations like owning a house, getting married, having children because you are trying to give everything to your sport, is also unlike any other “.
Olivia Podmore had “lost the will to fight”
Visibly disappointed at not having been able to participate in the Olympic Games in Tokyo, also revealing the state of mind of some athletes in this situation, Olivia Podmore leaves the world of sport in mourning, while mental health has been particularly topical in this world in recent months. While Naomi Osaka had given up on Roland-Garros because of the pressure she was subjected to during the tournament, Simone Biles, for her part, forfeited several gymnastics events at the Tokyo Olympics to focus on her mental health. “We have lost a sister, a friend and a fighter who lost this will to fight in her,” Eric Murray said of Olivia Podmore.
Olivia Podmore © Instagram