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Boonen throws van der Poel under the bus with a very sharp statement

Boonen throws van der Poel under the bus with a very sharp statement

Mathieu van der Poel may be world champion and has won three of the five milestones, but Tom Boonen still believes the Dutchman is a step behind himself.

This is what the 2005 world champion said in Madrid in a conversation with José de Cauwer, in an unusual interview conducted with Het Nieuwsblad. Sporza's co-commentator questioned the former multiple winner and told him, among other things, that today's best players would be happy if they could complete a big race just once.

Easily satisfied

“I noticed that, too,” Bonin says. “Quite frankly: today's achievements, there are not many of them. Not even with a champion like Van der Poel. I rode that in one season,” laughs the glutton of the first decade of this century. In 2005, Boonen won the Tour of Flanders, a week later in Paris-Roubaix, and later that year the World Championship on the Road.

Yet he also sees similarities. “I would love to compete against today's guys. Attacking from a distance and doing something crazy, that would suit my style of racing.” To discuss Visma Tactics | Rent a bike for slides. “Providing 400 watts per mountain bike: the most predictable thing and also easy to respond to. This might work in Omloop, but no longer in Ronde.”

Boonen believes it is smart for VDP to sign Alpecin-Deceuninck until 2028. “Especially with Canyon (material supplier, editor) behind him. Mathieu is relaxed, why move? If Philipsen is smart, he will extend too. The teamwork with Mathieu has “Great value; I hope to be a leader – like Van der Poel did.”

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