Knee injury delays cyclocross preparation for Mathieu van der Poel, according to report

The cyclocross world champion is currently set to return to racing on December 18

Mathieu van der Poel
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Mathieu van der Poel's cyclocross preparation has been thwarted following a crash in training which saw the reigning world champion injure his knee, according to a report.

Van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) had to spend time off the bike completely to allow the knee to recover before joining his team's training camp in Spain four days late. 

According to a report by WielerFlits the incident happened during a forest training session in Lichtaart where the Dutch superstar crashed and slid on the ground, injuring his knee. Fortunately, he did not need stitches, but a few days off the bike were necessary.

The report said that the crash had put him 'slightly behind in his preparation for his cross season'.

>>> Mathieu van der Poel sets aim at Gravel World Championships

Van der Poel is the last of the 'big three' cyclocross riders to join racing with Wout van Aert coming back with a bang at the Superprestige race in Boom as well as Tom Pidcock who finished seventh at that race. 

Both of those riders are set to ride in the snow of Val di Sole which has been deliberately kept as snowy as possible in a bid to show it could be classed as an event in the Winter Olympics.

Van der Poel, however, is going to make his season debut at the Rucphen race on Saturday, December 18 before immediately racing the next day in Namur too.

The reason for the delay was due to a long road cycling season that saw Van der Poel complete a full Classics campaign as well as Tirreno-Adriatico and the first week of the Tour de France

He also suffered a serious back injury at the summer Olympics in the mountain bike cross-country race meaning he had to miss the Benelux Tour and the mountain bike World Championships.

Van der Poel won't be racing as many 'cross races as usual either as he focuses on the World Cup races as well as the World Championships in Fayetteville in the USA, with 12 races currently on his programme.

Van der Poel is back to properly training again with his team in Spain and is still set to make his first racing appearance of the 'cross season in Rucphen.

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Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!

I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.

It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.

After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.

When not writing stories for the site, I don't really switch off my cycling side as I watch every race that is televised as well as being a rider myself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager. Maybe too regular.

My bike is a well used Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on my local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being my preferred terrain.