Shock as cyclist dies at time trial

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A COMPANY director described as a ‘high calibre cyclist’ has died after collapsing at an event in Italy.

The death on Sunday of Brian Phillips, 51, from Horringer, has shocked the local and national cycling world – he was a popular sportsman who encouraged others.

Mr Phillips was competing in Viareggio in a team time trial with East Grinstead Cycle Club of West Sussex, of which he was a life member.

He was also a member of West Suffolk Wheelers, whose chairman Barry Denny said: “He was a good friend of West Suffolk Wheelers. It was a complete shock.

“He was a very fit and healthy man and always a high calibre cyclist. Though he was in his 50s he was always very quick – one of the quickest on our night time trials.”

Mr Denny said club members would miss Mr Phillips.

“He was well liked and very popular because he was such a helpful chap,” he said.

Mr Phillips and his wife Claire have three teenage children. He was managing director of microwave antenna specialists Cobham Antenna Systems at Cheveley, near Newmarket.

The company said: “Brian was one of the most respected experts in the field of antenna design in the UK. Brian’s intelligent wit and humour, with his kind, generous personality, is leaving a huge gap in the lives of his staff.”

His funeral is for family only. The family have invited friends to a memorial reception at The Apex, in Bury St Edmunds, from noon until 3pm on Tuesday April 12.