Happy birthday to Serse Coppi, who was born on this day in 1923, and died on June 29, 1951. Sense was the younger brother of the famous Fausto Coppi.
Serse’s greatest victory was winning the 1949 Paris-Roubaix classic, when he was awarded equal winner with Andre Mahe after controversy. He died in 1951 after crashing in the final sprint of the Giro del Piemonte, when his wheel was caught in the tracks of the Turin tramway. He was 28.
The British weekly, The Bicycle, reported:
“The two brothers were still with the main bunch a kilometre from the end of the 272km race. Fausto was not moving with his usual smoothness and Serse was by his side with words of encouragement. Then three riders crashed, but only one of them did not continue the race – Serse Coppi. He was actually able to ride to his hotel, and it was not believed that he was seriously hurt. But he was subsequently taken to hospital, where concussion of the brain was diagnosed. He died in Fausto’s arms before an operation could be performed.”
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