IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Former Olympic cyclist Olivia Podmore dies at 24

While the New Zealand Olympic Committee did not disclose in a statement how Podmore died, officials did reference mental health resources for athletes.
Image: Olivia Podmore of Canterbury finishes first in the Elite Women Keirin final during the New Zealand Track Nationals on Feb. 4, 2017 in Invercargill, New Zealand.
Olivia Podmore of Canterbury finishes first in the Elite Women Keirin final during the New Zealand Track Nationals on Feb. 4, 2017, in Invercargill, New Zealand.Dianne Manson / Getty Images

Former New Zealand Olympic cyclist Olivia Podmore has died, according to the country's Olympic Committee. She was 24.

“The New Zealand Olympic Committee is deeply saddened by the loss of Olympian #1333 and Cyclist Olivia Podmore,” a statement said. “We offer our deepest condolences to family, friends and others in the NZ community who are grieving this loss.”

Podmore represented her native country during the Rio Games in 2016 and the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in 2018, Olympic Committee officials said.

“She was a valued team member and her loss will be felt across the New Zealand Sporting Community,” according to the statement.

In a statement to NBC News on Tuesday, a New Zealand police spokesperson said: "Police attended a sudden death at a Cambridge property on Monday evening. Police are making inquiries in relation to the death on behalf of the Coroner. The Coroner will release their findings in due course."

While Podmore's cause of death was unknown, the Olympic Committee's statement made reference to mental health resources for its athletes that included how to contact psychologists and counseling services.

“We are providing wellbeing support for members of her team and the wider team as we return home from Tokyo," the statement said.

New Zealand media reported Podmore, who did not compete in the Tokyo Games, had recently described the pressures of the elite sport in a social media post, according to Reuters.

Tennis star Naomi Osaka's decision to withdraw from the French Open and Wimbledon earlier this year put the spotlight on athletes and mental health. Simone Biles pulled out of most of her Olympic gymnastics events in Tokyo, citing a need to take care of her mental health.

“Right now for us it's about focusing on the wellbeing of the people who are here and having to deal with this loss," Cycling New Zealand chief executive Jacques Landry said during a news conference, according to Reuters.

"There will be a time for us actually to review and look at if and where we would have had missteps or where we didn't act properly," he added.

Podmore won silver in the team sprint and bronze in the time trial at the Junior World Champs in Astana in 2015, catapulting her to the Rio Games, where she competed in sprint, team sprint and keirin, despite a heavy crash, according to her team biography.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, text HOME to 741741 or visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources for additional resources.

Reuters contributed.