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Mathieu van der Poel to ride Tour of Flanders in 2019

Dutchman will race part of the Spring Classics next season including Amstel Gold and Flanders

Joe Robinson
17 Dec 2018

Cyclocross's most dominant male star, Mathieu van der Poel, has confirmed that he will be taking aim at some of the road season's biggest one-day classics in 2019, including the Tour of Flanders.

Race organiser, Flanders Classics, posted in a tweet on Monday that the young Dutchman is scheduled to start at Gent-Wevelgem, Dwars door Vlaanderen, the Tour of Flanders and finally Brabantse Pijl.

This also confirms that Van der Poel's team, Corendon-Circus, have secured invited to four of the biggest one-day Classics in their first year at ProContinental level.

Besides those races organised by Flanders Classics, it is also expected that Van der Poel will ride early season races Nokere Koerse and the Handzame Classic, before also experiencing the Ardennes through the Amstel Gold Race. 

The 23-year-old is currently holding the men's cyclocross circuit with an iron fist. Having raced 17 times so far this season, Van der Poel has romped to 15 victories including nine wins in his last nine races.

This comes after also riding part of the cross-country mountain bike season and racing, partly, on the road earlier in 2018.

 

Van der Poel won two one-day road races in 2018, the Ronde Van Limburg and the Dutch road national championships, while also finishing seconds at the European road race championships. Van der Poel won the Arctic Tour of Norway and Boucles de la Mayenne stages races in 2018, too. 

While 2019 will be Van der Poel's first concerted effort to target major one-day road races, expectations will be high considering the rider's clear talent and already-proven ability to win on the road.

Expectations will also be fuelled by the relative success of serial cyclocross rival, Wout van Aert, who raced this year's Spring Classics campaign. 

At his first attempt, current cyclocross World Champion Van Aert podiumed at Strade Bianche before finishing 10th at Gent-Wevelgem, 9th at the Tour of Flanders and 13th at Paris-Roubaix, all after racing cyclocross throughout the winter. 

Van Aert is set to repeat his Spring Classics campaign in 2019, this time with the support of WorldTour outfit Team Jumbo, who he is expected to sign for early next year. 

As for Van der Poel, next year's Spring Classics taster could be just that. The Dutchman has confirmed on various occasions that he has no intention to move on to the road full time until after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in which he will be aiming for cross country mountain bike gold.