Former German track and field champion Alexander Lubina dies aged 42 in tragic accident in cave
Alexander Lubina, former German athletics champion, tragically died aged 42 after diving into a cave during a storm in Mallorca
Former German athletics champion Alexander Lubina has been found dead in Mallorca, aged 42.
According to the Spanish Guardia Civil, a storm caused high waves which threw the runner into the rocks of Cala Serena. Divers then recovered his body from the cave on Thursday night.
Lubina, who won the 10,000 meters at the 2002 German Championships, was said to have held training sessions for local runners this week before his tragic accident. His racing club, TV Wattenscheid 01, has since paid tribute to him.
In a published statement, they said: “TV Wattenscheid 01 Leichtathletik eV thinks of the loved ones of Alexander Lubina and wishes the bereaved, especially in these difficult times.”
A police spokesman told German newspaper Bild: “It is a dangerous place where, unfortunately, there have been several accidents and fatalities.”
Undoubtedly, the highlight of Lubina’s career came in 2002, when her success at national level allowed her to qualify for the European Championships in Munich. There he finished 13th.
Two years later he competed in the European Cross Country Championships, finishing 29th. He then changed direction and in 2008 became the German long-distance orienteering champion.
He also attempted to qualify for the Beijing Olympics in 2008 via the marathon, a discipline he had tackled a year earlier. However, he narrowly failed to make the German team for the Games in China.
In addition to his running club, others have taken to social media to pay their respects. On the athlete’s Twitter page, one person wrote: “Sad news, show them up there in the clouds.”
Another said: “Alex you are walking on clouds now.” A host of other users simply left heart emoji or sent a “RIP” message. Lubina himself hadn’t posted a photo on the platform since uploading an image of himself training on rough terrain on December 31.
His page also reflects another of his passions, open water swimming, which he had continued to practice alongside running.
As a junior, Lubina had already won several national titles in the 5,000 and 10,000 meters. His Wattenscheid club also helped produce Sabine Braun, who was a two-time world heptathlon champion.