UCI (Czechia) - Press Release: UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships: MVDP pursues his legacy in Tábor.
Sixth cyclo-cross rainbow jersey:
Mathieu Van der Poel illuminated the final day of competition in Tábor (Czechia) with a sixth Men Elite UCI Cyclo-cross World Champion title. Zoe Bäckstedt and Stefano Viezzi are Sunday’s other winners.
Men Elite: MVDP’s glory:
Tábor has witnessed another legendary feat from Mathieu Van der Poel. Nine years after he claimed his first Elite UCI World Champion title at the same venue, the Dutch superstar gave another masterclass in Czechia to claim his seventh Elite rainbow jersey, the sixth in cyclo-cross, with another one claimed last year on the road.
When it comes to cyclo-cross only, Van der Poel leaves behind him iconic champions with five Elite titles: Switzerland’s Albert Zweifel, Frenchman André Dufraisse and Italian Renato Longo. Only Belgian Eric De Vlaminck remains ahead of MVDP, with seven Elite UCI World titles. Marianne Vos has won eight in the Women Elite ranks.
“It was the most important races of my cycle-cross season and I’m happy to win,” Van der Poel said. The Oranje icon can turn to his next goals, on the road and in mountain bike, after an almost perfect cyclo-cross campaign this season: 13 victories in 14 races.
Van der Poel left no doubt regarding his ambitions as he powered to the front as soon as the race began. His countryman Joris Nieuwenhuis quickly emerged as the leading chaser, while Belgium’s Michael Vanthourenhout was battling with another Dutchman, Pim Ronhaar, in pursuit of the bronze medal.
After 58’14’’ of effort, Van der Poel triumphed. Nieuwenhuis followed him (+37’’) for a Dutch 1-2. Vanthourenhout (+1’06’’) prevented a fully Oranje podium, making sure Belgium took a medal for the 26th consecutive year.
As they witnessed Van der Poel’s greatness, the crowds in Tábor also bade farewell to another legend, Zdeněk Štybar (CZE), riding for the last time an event that made him a three-time UCI Men Elite Cyclo-cross World Champion (2010, 2011, 2014).