FRIENDS from the world of sport have paid tribute to an Olympian who died following a cycling accident.
Howard Plumb, 42, was cycling near Goodwood at the weekend when he collided with a car.
He suffered serious injuries and died at St George’s Hospital, London, on Monday.
Mr Plumb, a scientist from Westbourne, represented the UK in windsurfing in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and travelled around the world competing.
He was also a sailor and the sailing and cycling communities have spoken of their shock and sadness at his death.
RYA racing manager and performance director John Derbyshire said: ‘He will be remembered for his disposition, which endeared him to all whom he met as a genuinely likeable man, who turned his passion for competitive windsurfing into another physical sport, cycling, which he enjoyed immensely.
‘Those who he touched will miss him enormously.’
Mr Plumb, who had a long-term partner, was a member of the Internet Cycling Team.
Team founder Guy Watson said: ‘On a weekend when there was so much for the cycling community to celebrate, our members are shocked and saddened by what has happened to Howard.
‘Howard joined i-Team.cc in 2005 and immediately impressed us with his athleticism in endurance cycling events such as the Etape du Tour and La Marmotte in France, where he would often be our best finisher.
‘Howard’s biggest contribution to the club though was his personality. He was modest about his own achievements and was always positive and supportive to his teammates regardless of their ages and abilities.
‘Speaking personally, I will miss Howard enormously. He was a model club member, what we call in the cycling club world a real clubman. He got out there and did things in a way that inspired others – and a true gentleman and a friend.’
The accident happened on Knights Hill, Charlton, near Chichester, at 5.15pm.
A 54-year-old man from Sweden, the driver of a white Honda Jazz, was arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving and has been bailed.
Sergeant Stewart Goodwin, from Sussex Police, said: ‘We are appealing for any witnesses who may have seen this crash or the vehicles prior to it.’
Contact Sussex Police on 101 or email firstname.lastname@example.org quoting Operation Birr.