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Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Alcohol a factor in Bennett's death

By Associated Press

Kyle Bennett at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

HOUSTON -- Olympic BMX cyclist Kyle Bennett's blood had an alcohol level twice the legal level for drunken driving when he died in a car crash in Southeast Texas. Bennett was 33 when he died in a single-vehicle crash happened the morning of Oct. 14 in Conroe, Texas, north of Houston.

In an autopsy report obtained by The Courier of Conroe, the Montgomery County medical examiner found that Bennett had a blood alcohol content of 0.145 percent by volume. The legal standard in Texas is 0.08 percent.

Bennett, 33, was a three-time UCI World champion, three-time NBL champion and 2009 ABA champion. He was also the first BMX rider to qualify for the United States men's team when BMX debuted at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Bennett was a gold-medal contender in Beijing, but did not medal due to a dislocated shoulder suffered during the semifinals.

Since the 2008 Olympics, Bennett continued to ride for Free Agent and pursue a professional career. He parted ways with Free Agent in January 2012 (after riding for the brand for nine years) and ultimately settled back into a spot on the Off Road Peddler (ORP) shop team, for which he rode as a professional racer in 2000. Bennett was largely recognized for his smooth and stylish take on BMX racing, which had earned him the nickname "Butter." He is survived by his fiancé and a young daughter.

Information from The Courier of Conroe was used in this report.