These are the ten biggest favorites for the victory in the Tour of Flanders | Cycling

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POLLMore than six months after the planned start, the battle for the overall victory in the cycling classic Ronde van Vlaardingen starts this afternoon. There are plenty of favorites to take home the bronze trophy. This website lists the ten biggest contenders.




Mathieu van der Poel – Alpecin-Fenix

Doesn’t the Dutch all-rounder automatically belong to the favorites when he appears at the start? Van der Poel proved his excellent form during the Tirreno-Adriatico, in which he won a stage. He captured the overall victory in the BinckBank Tour. Precisely his victory in the latter race showed that Van der Poel is perhaps the biggest contender for success in ‘Flanders Finest’: after a mighty solo he fought to a margin of eight seconds on number two Søren Kragh Andersen.

Van der Poel during the BinckBank Tour. © heart you

Wout van Aert – Jumbo-Visma

“I drive to win races and I have to beat Mathieu for that”, Van Aert hit the nail on the head referring to his biggest competitor. Van Aert also has the complete package and is in great shape. The Belgian won two stages in the Tour de France and won a silver medal at the World Cup, while he had already won the Strade Bianche and Milan-San Remo before that. The born Fleming previously finished ninth and fourteenth respectively in his home race.

Wout Van Aert during Gent-Wevelgem.
Wout Van Aert during Gent-Wevelgem. © BELGA

Julian Alaphilippe – Deceuninck–Quick-Step

During his baptism of fire in the Tour of Flanders, he will hope for his excellent World Cup form, with which he took gold in Imola. The Frenchman was in charge of Van der Poel in the final sprint in the Brabantse Pijl last week and thus showed that he also belonged to the contenders in Flanders. Alaphilippe also has the strongest team in the field with Deceunninck-Quickstep and will especially want to make a difference on the famous Paterberg.


Poll

Which of these favorites has the best chance of winning?

  • Mathieu van der Poel (40%)

  • Wout van Aert (33%)

  • Julian Alaphilippe (12%)

  • Alberto Bettiol (2%)

  • Mads Pedersen (7%)

  • Tiesj Benoot (1%)

  • Matteo Trentin (1%)

  • Sep Vermarcke (1%)

  • Kasper Asgreen (1%)

  • Dylan van Baarle (2%)

Alberto Bettiol – EF Pro Cycling

Last year he was not one of the top favorites, but he escaped sixteen kilometers before the finish line to no longer be outdated. Bettiol will therefore no longer be underestimated during this edition. The 26-year-old Italian competed in the Tour to prepare for the classics, something that now has to pay off.

Mads Pedersen – Trek-Segafredo

Pedersen made an impression last week during Gent-Wevelgem, in which he pushed the maximum in the last kilometer. The main competitors then? Van der Poel and Van Aert. The Dane showed that the favorites are not unapproachable. The Trek-Segafredo rider could already smell the overall victory in 2018, but was then eventually beaten by Niki Terpstra. Pedersen did struggle with hamstring problems during the Scheldeprijs, which hopefully have completely disappeared for him.

Mads Pedersen.
Mads Pedersen. © BELGA

Tiesj Benoot – Sunweb

To his great disappointment, could not participate in Gent-Wevelgem, one of the races that his home country Belgium has to offer, due to corona measures. That is why Benoot will be extra keen to surprise the cannons on familiar soil. Benoot came in eighth in Liège-Bastogne-Liège and is regarded in Flanders as no more than an outsider, but he can surprise just like that.

Matteo Trentin – CCC Team

The Italian participated in the Tour of Vlaardingen seven times before, but never finished higher than thirteenth place. In those participations, however, he was usually considered a servant to other riders. Because Greg van Avermaet is shooting today, all eyes on CCC Team are on the 31-year-old. Trentin rode to third place during the Tour in battle for the green jersey won by Sam Bennett.

Matteo Trentin.
Matteo Trentin. © BELGA

Sep Vanmarcke – EF Pro Cycling

In 2014 and 2016 Vanmarcke finished third in the Tour of Flanders, but those years seem to be over. The 32-year-old Belgian was left out of the Tour selection by EF, allowing him to fully prepare for the classics. “My only big goal this fall is the classics,” he said ambitiously The last news. Time to put his words into action at the start in Antwerp.

Kasper Asgreen – Deceuninck–Quick-Step

The most expected of his team Deceunninck-Quickstep on Belgian soil. It is therefore logical that Asgreen can be mentioned in the same breath with the other favorites. The Dane immediately finished second during his debut in the Tour of Flanders last year and can only do it better in one way: to win this afternoon’s edition.

Dylan van Baarle – INEOS

Ridden six times in the Tour of Flanders. The closest to the overall victory came in 2017, when fourth place was the reward for a strong ride. The previously so dominant INEOS is yearning for success in Flanders after a dramatic Tour and little conviction in other races. Outsider Van Baarle has to help his team with that.

Van Baarle on an exploration prior to the Tour of Flanders.
Van Baarle on an exploration prior to the Tour of Flanders. © BELGA





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