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by Mark Zalewski
April 1, 2017
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Pichon wins Route Adélie de Vitré; Indian Pacific Wheel Race mourns death of British rider Mike Hall; Gilbert on his resurgence with QuickStep: ‘I feel good in my skin’; Lizzie Deignan opens up about her experience with British Cycling; Interview with Manzana Postobon manager about Vuelta invite; Boonen says he can still play a role in Flanders’ finale; Sep Vanmarcke ‘If I could get a podium, that would be a surprise’; Devolder ‘If it up to me, this is definitely not my last Tour of Flanders’; Cervelo-Bigla cyclist struck by vehicle while riding from work; No Tour for Dumoulin, all focus on Giro; Van der Poel talks about possible transition to road; Andy Schleck named new chairman of Tour of Luxembourg; Amy’s Gran Fondo expanding for 2017; Roompot-Nederlandse Loterij taking Flanders prep in stride.
Cyclocross star Mathieu Van der Poel is back on the bike training after taking a break following the cyclocross season. In an interview with Sporza he said that watching the Classics is giving him thoughts of racing on the road at the top level, and he envisions a two-year plan to possibly make the jump.
“Whether it itches? Yes, surely,” Van der Poel said about watching the Classics. “Especially the way they are raced lately could tempt me,” he said of the attacking style and small group finishes common this year.
The Dutch cyclocross champion was on the programme with compatriot Bram Tankink (LottoNL-Jumbo) who said he first noticed Van der Poel while racing in the road national championships last year. “I recognized the jersey, but the guy was driving so fast,” said Tankink. “I thought it was an amateur who was with us, but it proved to be Mathieu.”
Tankink, 38, is veteran road racer that successfully transitioned from racing mountain bikes as a junior, and gave advice to the 22-year-old. “You still need a few years. A cyclocross race is an hour, the Tour of Flanders is six — there’s a very big gap between. If you wait too long [to make the transition], then you almost cannot go that deep anymore.”
When asked about his schedule Van der Poel smiled and said, “I’d say about two years. Tankink knows my schedule around this.”
Click through to read more at Sporza.