Each racing style has its own limitations, Mathieu Van Der Poel has admitted that. He has hinted at changing his racing style as these aggressive attacks could have cost him some victories. A good example is his attack at last year’s Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne.
Mathieu Van Der Poel makes racing exciting again, and we got to see his new style this spring, it was actually measured this time. During the Tour of Flanders, he carefully withstood Tadej Pogačar’s attacks and eventually overpowered him.
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This change in racing style is much needed, says Van Der Poel. This could lead him towards more strategies and even bigger wins. Mathieu Van Der Poel said in an interview:
It is more and more about the palmarès. I realise more and more that those ‘stupid’ attacks, like that long solo last year in Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne, are fun, but they might cost me the win.
If I had ridden smart, I might have won that race. But my way of racing has also brought me a lot. I probably wouldn’t have won other races if I had been smart. But the level is so high now that it’s almost impossible to race stupid. That gets punished.
After a long break, taken because of a back injury, Mathieu Van Der Poel was back on his bike. He was ready for Milan-San Remo and then even won a stage of Settimana Coppi e Bartali.
He also won this year’s Dwars door Vlaanderen in a breathless finale and finished fourth at the Amstel Gold Race. The Dutchman admitted that life has changed for him after the back injury, he seems to be enjoying racing more after the recovery. Although this issue will remain for some years to come, it will certainly not hold him back.
Mathieu Van Der Poel shared his views and feelings about the injury:
That will remain something to work on for the rest of my career, but I think I’ve come out of it stronger. You always hear that riders only realise how much they enjoy cycling after an injury, and it’s true. I really enjoy cycling and training again. The past few years I lived from race to race and had few training periods. I liked that, but now you see that some rest now and then can be good too.
Van Der Poel has taken a break from racing till Giro d’Italia which will officially commence on May 6. Apart from this, he will also be participating in the Tour De France. We know that he will push the bar, even more, this time.
Featured Image Via YouTube/KALAS Sportswear