Adrie van der Poel was one of the guests at Extra Time Koers and so he also had to answer some questions about his son Mathieu. Will we see the Alpecin-Fenix leader again this spring? “Things are going well, he will be in Spain for another two weeks,” Adri said. “But those training sessions are not races of more than 6 hours,” he added.
Dirk De Wolf, like many others, closely monitors Mathieu van der Poel’s Strava activity. “Today he traveled 95 kilometers for three hours,” he said. “1.837 altimeter, average power 253, max. 1100 watts. It’s still pulsing at 184 and its intensity in this workout was 83 percent. This is a serious workout. So you’re good, or he’ll be fine.”
De Wolf: “If it were someone else, I’d say he wouldn’t come back right away. But maybe Matthew could start quietly in Milan-Turin (March 16) or Kobe Bartale (March 22-26)?”
Is there any hope of getting back into the packaging soon? “I don’t know where he should start, he should start when he’s ready,” said Adrie van der Poel. “He must have very little or no pain anymore. We don’t have contact every day. He sits there quietly, he is very satisfied with where he is now and will be staying for another two weeks.”
“It also means not racing for at least two weeks.”
It still lacks solidity. His last decent race was the Tour last year.
“He’s been on it for three or four weeks now. It’s going well, but those courses are not like the 6+ hour ride races with an average of 45km/h. It also lacks solidity. The race was actually the Tour of the Year past. And then the race started sporadically.”
Could this break help him? “He actually tested it, like his knee. That was twice for two months.”
“As a parent, and companion, we are very easy about falls. If nothing is broken, we think it is not that bad. But a fall like this at 60 or 70 km/h has a huge impact on your body.”
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‘No one has recovered from an injury’
Tim Declercq adds: “Nobody has improved from an injury or a fall. But if you handle it well and rest well, you can come back to the same level. Better? Maybe mentally. You’re not improving physically.”
“If you tend toward overtraining, rest may be helpful. But if you’re on a good schedule, don’t.” And what about the example of Wout van Aert? Isn’t he stronger after the critical injury in the round? “He would be in good shape now if it wasn’t for this injury.”
Adrie van der Poel: “I was training a lot, but I hated hard training. It wasn’t ideal for us either. I always told my passengers afterward that two weeks of rest was the limit.”
“But if you’re not on your bike for one day each week, that’s 50 extra days of rest. You can also mean a lot to that. Go do some fun stuff. A day off the bike is a fun day out, especially in your head. I took that of experience.”
And finally, is Mathieu van der Poel now pain-free? “Sometimes he still has a reaction,” says Adrie van der Poel. “But it’s not like the last few years. It’s not fun anymore now and then. But when you’re on the bike, you don’t think about that injury. But it wasn’t good.”
One day a week not sitting on the bike is great.
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