Mathieu van der Poel has had a successful restart of the road season with several fourth-place finishes and top 15s, but the Alpecin-Fenix star’s campaign has undoubtedly been overshadowed by the stunning, dominant month of Wout van Aert and his Jumbo Visma team.
Today, Van der Poel turned the tables on nine-man-strong Jumbo Visma team that has been nearly unbeatable this August.
The Dutch star used an early storm to douse the competition with a stunning jolt of acceleration.
Racing with just his brother David and Oscar Riesebeek as teammates, Van der Poel attacked the 22 percent grade cobbled climb with 44km to go.
He quickly secured a 30-second gap, and no amount of teamwork behind him would threaten his lead.
Van der Poel went into time trial mode and increased his lead to 1:31 by the finish.
See Van der Poel’s explosive attack at the six-minute mark below:
Due to the early storms, it looked like Van der Poel had just completed a mildly muddy cyclocross race at the finish.
Nils Eekhoff (Sunweb) and Timo Roosen (Team Jumbo-Visma) completed the socially-distanced podium.
Fellow cyclocrosser Corne van Kessel (Circus-Wanty Gobert) finished seventh.
In the women’s race, cyclocross and road legend Marianne Vos (CCC-Liv) featured in the race before fading with two laps to go, and finished fourth behind Anna Van der Breggen (Boels Dolmans).
Van der Poel’s national championship-winning ride made it an extra-special day for the team, after cyclocrosser Marcel Meisen took the German road national championships in a sprint.
The 2020 title is Van der Poel’s second in three years, after his dramatic sprint victory in 2018.