• Wout Van Aert of Belgium trails Mathieu Van Der Poel of the Netherlands (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
It was victory for Mathieu van der Poel in the cyclocross world championships in Ostend, Belgium as the Dutchman romped to victory in the sand.
SBS Cycling Central

1 Feb 2021 - 7:49 AM 

Mathieu van der Poel recovered from a second lap crash before surging to the front and pushing to the finish to clinch a fourth elite men’s cyclo-cross world title ahead of Wout van Aert (Belgium). 

The 26-year-old completed a clean sweep of world titles for the Netherlands from the UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships, joining Lucinda Brand (women), Fem van Empel (U23 women) and Pim Ronhaar (U23 men) in a Dutch domination. 

As expected Wout van Aert (Belgium) was his main challenger, but a third-lap puncture gave his rival a 10-second advantage which the Dutchman grew to an unbeatable lead.

“The flat tyre [for Wout van Aert] was a little bit of luck from my side to come back but at that moment I didn’t feel the race was over yet,” said Van der Poel.

“The course changed and became a bit faster at the beach section and I felt a bit better. I felt better legs by then and I improved every lap running through the sand, so the good feeling was growing lap by lap and that made the difference for me today.”

Toon Aerts (Belgium) was third at the World Championship for the third year in a row after seeing off a late challenge by Tom Pidcock (Great Britain).

Brand finally wins Cyclo-cross World title as Dutch dominate
Lucinda Brand won the Cyclo-cross women's elite title in Ostend, Belgium on Sunday (AEDT).

Australian Heinrich Haussler finished 35th in the race, three laps down on van der Poel.