Mathieu van der Poel says ‘it’s a small miracle he’s back on the bike’ after high-speed crash

The Dutchman has been to recce the Tour of Flanders route with his team

Mathieu van der Poel is back on the back after a nasty crash earlier this week (Photo by Luc Claessen/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Mathieu van der Poel says ‘it’s a small miracle he’s back on the bike again’ after his high-speed crash earlier this week.

Van der Poel was caught in a spill during the sprint finish at Belgian one-day race Nokere Koerse, being taken away by ambulance.

But fortunately the cyclocross world champion suffered no serious injuries, escaping with abrasions and bruises.

He was back on the bike the following day to recce the Tour of Flanders route, ahead of his cobbled Classics debut.

>>> Who are the bookies’ favourites to win Milan-San Remo 2019?

The 24-year-old told cycling news site Wielerflits: “It’s a small miracle I’m back on the bike again. It could have been a lot worse.

“I was in a lot of pain, but in the ambulance I already felt that it wasn’t so bad.

“But still, falling on the cobblestones definitely hurts.”

See more

Van der Poel, the Dutch national road champion, crashed in the wind up for the sprint finish in East Flanders.

As the peloton hit the cobbled sector leading to the finish, Sunweb sprinter Max Walscheid came down near the front of the bunch.

Van der Poel was unable to avoid the collision, rolling along the stones before being hit by another rider.

He stayed down after the crash and was taken off the course by ambulance.

>>> André Greipel to ride 2019 Tour de France as final wildcard places announced

His Corendon-Circus team later confirmed he had suffered no fractures and will be able to complete his road programme as planned.

The crash brought van der Poel’s schedule into question as he makes his debut in the cobbled Classics, starting with Gent-Wevelgem later this month, followed by Dwars door Vlaanderen, the Tour of Flanders and Amstel Gold Race.

He added: “I’m still fairly stiff. That will take a few days. But during the recce I upped the pace more.

“My hip was hit the hardest, but that will be fine too.”

Alex Ballinger
Alex Ballinger

Alex is the digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter and now as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output.

Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) and joining CW in 2018, Alex has covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers. 

Away from journalism, Alex is a national level time triallist, avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.