Emma Cole 8 Oct 2021
Alpecin-Fenix rider calls incident 'shocking' and thanks the cycling community for their support
Alex Richardson (Alpecin-Fenix) was robbed of his bike at knifepoint by four masked attackers in London’s Richmond Park on Thursday afternoon. Richardson called it a ‘shocking experience’ and urged other cyclists to be careful.
The 2018 Lincoln Grand Prix winner revealed on his Instagram that he was chased by four men on motorbikes wearing balaclavas after he finished a training ride in the park at 3pm.
The 31-year-old wrote, ‘I knew exactly they wanted to take my bike and started to think what the best thing I could do was.’
Realising that Richardson was trying to escape, the attackers rode one of the motorbikes straight at him, flooring him.
He said he was still holding onto his bike when the second motorbike dragged him and his bike along for 100 metres.
According to Richardson, the attackers then pulled out a 15in machete, at which point he decided to let go of the bike.
He urged fellow cyclists to exercise caution and suggested that there has been a rise in these type of incidents in the area.
‘Please be careful in the area and note this is becoming a common occurrence in parts of London,’ he wrote.
Richardson received a deluge of support and concern on his Instagram post, including from fellow Alpecin-Felix teammate Jasper Philipsen and AG2R-Citroën Team rider Oliver Naesen.
Support from the cycling community has continued to pour in with Richardson thanking people for their support in another Instagram post.
He wrote, ‘Thanks for all your kind and thoughtful messages concerning yesterday’s incident, there are so many good people out there.’
‘Today is another day and I have a very positive memory of doing the Worlds last weekend, something I worked hard to achieve.
‘That and my family is what I will fill my mind with. Bikes and materials come and go.’
He will ride in the Tour de Vendée in France tomorrow alongside teammates Simon Dehairs, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, Gianni Vermeersch, Laurens de Vreese and Ayco Bastiaens.
A police spokesman said: 'Police were called at 1601hrs on Thursday to reports of a robbery in Richmond Park. Officers attended and it was reported that a man had been assaulted by a group of men who stole his bike. He did not require hospital treatment. They carried out a search of the area but found no trace of the suspects. Officers took an initial statement. Enquiries continue. No arrests have been made.'
Anyone with information should call police on 101 quoting CAD 5103/07Oct or to remain anonymous contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.