New Zealand have had their own fair share of drama in the Vuelta a Espana, a race renowned for its drama anyway. Sadly the drama has been unwanted in this instance, with Aqua Blue Sport – the team of Kiwi Aaron Gate – suffering an arson attack on their team bus overnight.
The announcement was made by the team on Twitter in the morning from Almeria in Spain before the start of stage 12 of the Vuelta a Espana. “Our team bus has been completely damaged in a cowardly arson attack over night. No one was injured. Police have arrested a suspect.”
From the look of the images the bus was completely torched, with the fire consuming most of the bus. A burnt mattress, a destroyed interior, a burnt hole in the roof of the bus and virtually the entire interior were shown in photos to have been torched and destroyed; with precious little going unconsumed by the flames.
Thankfully no riders or staff were injured by the fire that took place at 1.20am. It turned out that the fire had begun because of a mattress which was placed underneath the bus and then set alight. In a later statement the team extended their gratitude to the Fire and Police as well as Unipublic and the ASO for their assistance through this difficult situation.
We wish Aqua Blue Sport, and Aaron Gate all the best as they continue to progress through their debut grand tour.