WHEN Carly Hibberd left Toowoomba, she was well on her way to becoming a world class cyclist.
This week, that dream was shattered in tragic circumstances.
Ms Hibberd, less than three months from her wedding to Cameron Rogers and in the midst of qualifying for the London Olympics, was killed on Wednesday when struck by a car while training in Italy.
The 26-year-old grew up in Toowoomba where she competed in BMX against the likes of Olympian Jared Graves.
She moved with her family to the Sunshine Coast about 14 years ago and then to Italy in 2009 to pursue her career as a professional road cyclist.
Toowoomba BMX Club president David Budden, who started coaching Ms Hibberd when she was just six, remembered her as an ambitious, talented youngster.
“She was a good kid with plenty of talent,” he said. “She tried hard and trained hard.”
Mr Budden spoke with Ms Hibberd via email less than 24 hours before the tragic accident.
He said she was in good spirits and confident of her future in the sport, with several opportunities arising in the United States and France.
Mr Budden said Ms Hibberd was well on her way to qualifying for the London Olympics.
Prominent Toowoomba cyclist Kerry Cosgrove agreed Ms Hibberd had the cycling world at her feet.
“She was a bright kid who had a huge amount of potential,” he said.
“And the sad thing is she still had 10 years of world class cycling ahead of her.”
Ms Hibberd’s family yesterday spoke publicly about a talented athlete who was “living her dream” by cycling professionally.
“It was her passion, along with her love for Cameron, to whom she was to be married in October this year.
“They spoke to each other constantly, not a day went by without numerous calls.”
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