Mathieu van der Poel Wins Worlds

Not even a late-race crash could stop Dutch superstar Mathieu van der Poel from taking his maiden World Road Championships title in Scotland.

By Dan Beck |

Mathieu van der Poel of the Netherlands captured the win in the elite men’s road race at the UCI World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland on Sunday. The Dutch rider overcame a late crash to maintain his lead and win the rainbow jersey.

Wout Van Aert of Belgium finished second, and Solvenia’s Tadej Pogačar won a sprint over Denmark’s Mads Pedersen to claim third and round out the podium.

Van der Poel erased a 38-year world championship drought for the Netherlands, becoming the first Dutch rider to win the world title in the men’s road race since Joop Zoetemelk in 1985.


What happened

It was a world championship race that had a bit of everything. A protest forced the neutralisation of the race with 190 kilometres to go. An hour later, the race resumed and the riders made their way to Glasgow, where the field was treated to a mix of rain, wet roads, and sun around the 14.3km circuit.

The pace was wickedly quick throughout, with a number of the favourites launching attacks with just under 100km to go.

After Italy’s Alberto Bettiol went on a solo attack with 55km to go, a chase group of van der Poel, Van Aert, Pogačar, and Pederson formed. Just as the chasing quartet was about to catch Bettiol just over 22km left in the race, van der Poel attacked and the others couldn’t respond. He quickly put a gap on the chasing three.

But it was anything but a smooth ride to the finish for van der Poel, though, who crashed on a corner with 16.5km to go. Van der Poel’s wheel slipped on the slick roads, causing him to go down. He got back on the bike and didn’t lose much of his advantage.

Despite the crash and a ripped jersey, van der Poel resumed increasing his advantage on Van Aert, Pogačar, and Pedersen. As they hit the final lap of circuit with just over 14km to go, it seemed clear that the three chasers were battling in out for second and third—not first.

Van der Poel’s lead grew to almost two minutes, and he rode to the world title in sensational fashion.

UCI World Championships Men’s Road Race – Top 5

  1. Mathieu van der Poel (Netherlands)
  2. Wout Van Aert (Belgium)
  3. Tadej Pogačar (Slovenia)
  4. Mads Pedersen (Denmark)
  5. Stefan Küng (Switzerland)

READ MORE ON: pro racing race results van der poel world championships

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