Team leader Nicolas Portal of Team INEOS suddenly died on Tuesday at the age of forty due to a heart attack. The Frenchman has been active with the British cycling team since 2011.
“With the greatest sorrow we are announcing the death of our beloved team member, colleague and friend Nico Portal who suddenly died this afternoon in his home in Andorra,” INEOS reports on his website.
“We are all overwhelmed by grief over this terrible news and ask everyone to respect the privacy of the family during this difficult time. RIP Nico, your mind will always be with us on the road and you will be in our hearts forever. “
Portal was INEOS team leader in the Tour de France last year. There he saw his Colombian pupil Egan Bernal take the final victory.
In 2013, Portal was the youngest sports director in the Tour at the age of 34. With Chris Froome, Geraint Thomas and Bernal, he won the French cycling round six times in total.
Portal was also active as a rider for many years. He played for AG2R, Caisse d’Epargne and Team Sky, where he was forced to end his career in 2010 due to heart rhythm disorders.
Portal achieved one victory in his active career. In 2004 he won a stage in the Critérium du Dauphiné. He also rode the Tour de France six times and won Champs-Élysées at all participations.