Mathieu van der Poel starts the BinckBank Tour confidently on Tuesday in Blankenberge. The Dutch champion, who is working towards next month’s classics, is the top favorite for the overall victory.
“The goal of the team is to take a stage victory anyway. As far as my final classification is concerned, a lot will depend on the result of the time trial”, said 25-year-old Van der Poel.
“I am already 100 percent top. I rode an excellent Tirreno-Adriatico and then I went on altitude training. I am ready for this BinckBank Tour.”
Van der Poel chose to skip last week’s World Cup in Imola. “Very conscious”, he says. “I also watched the World Cup. I wasn’t really good enough to perform there. I would never have competed with men like Julian Alaphilippe.”
‘Time trial will be decisive’
Van der Poel took his time trial bike with him on altitude training. “The individual time trial will determine the final classification. That’s why I also took the time trial bike a few times in Livigno. That was a while ago”, said the Alpecin-Fenix rider.
“Then you notice that this is not so fast the first kilometers. It was good to take that time trial position again. The intermediate sprints can also be important, but that will depend on the situation in the race.”
After the BinckBank Tour, Van der Poel, who also passed the World and European Championships mountain bike, focuses on the Amstel Gold Race, where he won in an impressive way last year.
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