Superb bike handling from the Dutch youngster as he continues dominant start to season

To become cyclo-cross world champion at the age of 20, you need to have some serious bike-handling skills.

And with his grandfather being three-time Tour de France runner-up Raymond Poulidor and his father Adri also having won a rainbow jersey in cyclo-cross – as well as the Tour of Flanders and Liège–Bastogne–Liège – Mathieu van der Poel has some cycling pedigree.

Now aged 22 and almost untouchable in the new season, with eight victories in nine races, the Dutchman used some top skills today to avoid wiping out on a sandy descent at Superprestige Zonhoven.

Somehow he managed to keep the bike upright and continue his dominant start to the season as he won by 22 second from current world champion, Wout Aerts.


Close call, love it #luckyme @playsportsbe

A post shared by MVDP (@mathieuvanderpoel) on


Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.