Saturday, 4 February 2023

Cycling News

Wout van Aert rewards home crowd with sound victory over Van der Poel in Koksijde

Laboral Kutxa-Fundación Euskadi

The Wout van Aert/Mathieu van der Poel season win ratio swung to 5-3 in Van Aert’s favour on Thursday at the Duinencross in Koksijde. The Belgian champion powered away from his Dutch rival midway through the race and soloed over the hilly, sandy course to a commanding victory. Laurens Sweeck (Crelan-Fristads) was best of the rest in third.

Van der Poel started the race strongly but seemed to be favouring his back as Van Aert strode away but proved strong enough to hold onto second place more than a minute adrift. Although Van der Poel got the better of his Belgian nemesis in their first meeting at the Antwerp World Cup in early December, the Boxing Day World Cup in Gavere, and the X2O Trofee race in Herentals on Tuesday, Van Aert topped the Alpecin-Deceuninck rider in the Zilvermeercross, back-to-back Superprestige races (Zolder and Diegem) last month, Azencross in Loenhout and now the historic Koksijde Duinencross.

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