Australian sprinter Daniel Batman died in a tragic car crash early Tuesday morning, according to reports by Northern Territory police officials.
Daniel Batman, a two-time sprint Olympian, died on Tuesday in a single-car crash south-east of Darwin.
According to case officer NT detective John Worrall, Mr Batman's vehicle was believed to be travelling in the east direction of the Arnhem Highway, about 90 kilometres from Darwin, when it "left the road, crashed into a culvert and landed 10 metres off the road."
The crash was later reported at around 7AM by a passing motorist, NT authorities said, who reportedly noticed scattered parts of what appeared as a wrecked vehicle that later turned out as that of the famed athlete.
Initial investigation suggested that Mr Batman's car may have rolled over a number of time before it settled into a full stop a few meters from the highway, judging from the debris created by the deadly crash.
"Debris including side panels, a front bumper, shocks and the engine - (were) strewn 100 metres along the road," the NT News reported on Tuesday.
The Canberra-based athlete had just visited his children with former wife, champion hockey player Nova Peris-Kneebone, when the accident occurred, according to The Herald Sun.
It is yet unclear if another vehicle was involved in the crash but Sgt Worrall noted that "we're still in the early stages of the investigation."
"At this stage it is believed speed and alcohol may have been contributing factors in the crash and a file will be prepared for the coroner," the NT detective was quoted as saying on Wednesday by the Australian Associated Press (AAP).
The sprinter, who ran on 100-metre, 200-metre and 400-metre stretches, first rose to national prominence when he competed at the 2000 Summer Olympics athletics hosted by Sydney.
He secured a sixth place finish at the World Indoor Championship three years after and per Agence France Presse's (AFP) report was a two-time winner in Australia's 200-metre dash.
Prior to his death, Mr Batman was working on plans to return to the track field, which he officially left in 2004, for a possible slot in the Australian team that will be sent to the London Olympics this July.
Former colleagues of the Olympian greeted the news of his death with shock, with his ex-coach Tudor Bidder lamenting in a statement: "Thirty-one, it's not an age to be losing your life."
Mr Bidder told The Associated Press (AP) that his former ward was "very much a family man ... (who) had quite a lot of life inside those few years."
Fellow sprinter took to Twitter and said: "Daniel Batman was the best all-round sprinter Australia has ever seen. Rest in peace mate."
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