Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Deceuninck) salvaged what was left of his race on the UCI Cyclocross World Cup in Benidorm after crashing on the penultimate lap, remounting and ending in fifth place 12 seconds behind solo winner Wout van Aert (Visma-Lease a Bike) on Sunday.
The World Champion was racing among the many lead group on the eighth of 9 laps when the stay streaming footage confirmed him out of the blue on the bottom on a hard-packed and dusty part of the circuit.
“After the sand pit I hit a spot, I believed it was a bit softer nevertheless it was not, I used to be on the bottom and I knew the race was over. My shoulder is a bit sore, nevertheless it’s OK,” Van der Poel stated in a post-race interview.
The occasion marked the thirteenth and penultimate spherical of the UCI Cyclocross World Cup, and large crowds got here out to look at what was the ultimate conflict of the season between favourites Van der Poel and Van Aert.
As well as, Benidorm’s place, each geographically and on the calendar, meant it attracted the most important stars of the game from their January coaching camps, a lot of which occur within the Calpe and Denía space, which may be very near the coastal city.
Van der Poel admitted that he had a sluggish begin, caught behind the primary 20 riders on the circuit after the opening lap, the place he had a mechanical.
“To start with, my chain got here off, and I needed to chase, however that was OK,” Van der Poel stated. “However within the penultimate lap, after the sandpit, I hit the spot a bit an excessive amount of with my shoulder, and I knew it was over.”
Van der Poel misplaced precious time and positions as he cautiously remounted his bike after the crash, and he acquired again into the race however was 22 seconds behind the leaders. He managed to shut the hole to simply 12 seconds on the end line, taking fifth place on the day.
“It is higher to have it [bad luck] now. It is a tremendous exhausting race, and I did not have the freshest legs as I believed, however possibly profitable was nonetheless attainable; it could have been tough,” stated Van der Poel, who will line up as defending champion on the World Championship in Tabor in February.
Van der Poel had received ten races in a row and received 4 consecutive rounds of the World Cup in Antwerp, Gavere, Hulst, and Zonhoven earlier than lining up in Benidorm.
Requested if shedding his profitable streak bothered him, he stated, “No, not likely,” however added, “In fact, I wish to win, however I knew that it needed to finish sometime. This can be a tremendous tough race to win. It’s tough to make a distinction, and I feel I’ve to be happy with my place in the present day.”