Vout van Aert and Remco Evanpoel, the gods of Belgian cycling, are rivals throughout the year. Dressed in the national jersey at the World Championship road race on Sunday, the two have to come to an agreement so that Belgium’s failure from last year does not repeat itself. Both emphasize the effect of learning – and hope to avoid the lurking danger of attacks from the air.
Wollongong, a city of 260,000 residents located about 90km south of Sydney, has a spectacular view of sandy beaches and the many sunny delusions in the Australian spring. At the World Cycling Championships Down Under, being wavy but not too hilly means that not only is the list of favorites long, but there is danger from above.
“Magpies”, which we know as magpies, loosely. Especially now, during the breeding season, these birds often attack cyclists. Of course, he doesn’t have the new world champion’s rainbow jersey, but his field defense.
Over the past few days many World Cup participants have made unpleasant acquaintances with falling birds. These included Daniela Schmidsberger of Austria. “It’s inconvenient, because they not only hit your helmet, they also try to hold you over the head. On the other hand, it also pushes you forward in training,” Junior smiled.
Belgian youth star Remco Evanpoel reacted less calmly when “a very large bird came too close to him” and chased him. “It was scary. But apparently it’s Australia. I hope it’s the only time, but I’m scared of it.” Bronze in the individual time trial was a disappointment for Evanpoel – and so raised questions about his form.
With the newly crowned winner of the Tour of Spain and Van Aert, the legendary classic hunter, the Belgian team has two absolute extraordinary talents. A luxury condition, but it can also cause problems when it comes to two Flemings working together for the duration of the race.
Last year’s home World Cup in Flanders ended in disaster. The Belgians, who started out as big favourites, who had appointed Van Aert as leader, found themselves betrayed by the competition, even missing the podium and losing their title to Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe. Congratulations on defending successfully.
What followed was a media mudslinging which further aggravated the situation. Evenpoel, who had to sacrifice himself for his captain, criticized the strategy he had chosen on Flemish television, saying he himself had the legs to become world champion. “Disappointing,” van Aert immediately said, claiming that Evanpol agreed with the strategy set before the race. “He talked on TV more than just.”
A year later, the two alpha beasts are back together in the jerseys of the Belgium national team and confirm that they are done with the past. Everything is subordinate to the goal of bringing the rainbow jersey back home after Philippe Gilbert’s victory ten years ago. “We have learned from our mistakes from last year. This year our opponents will be looking for two Belgians, not just one,” said van Aert, who also skipped the time trial to put everything on the road racing card. Gave.
Tough competition awaits Van Aert and Evenpol. Even though defending champion Julian Alaphilippe, who is aiming for his third consecutive world title, doesn’t start off with optimal preparation after a fall in the Vuelta. In addition to two-time Slovenian Tour de France winner Tadej Pogakar and local hero Michael Mathews, Dutchman Mathieu van der Poel is among the contenders.