Could Wout van Aert win a Grand Tour? ‘It’s a point of no return,’ says Jumbo-Visma star 

After his remarkable performance at the Tour de France 2020, the Belgian says he has other goals to achieve  

(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Wout van Aert’s performances at the Tour de France 2020 have been truly staggering. 

The Belgian beaten the best sprinters in the world two win two stages, while decimating the general classification contenders in the mountains in support of his team.  

On the Grand Colombier on stage 15, it was Van Aert who dropped Nairo Quintana (Arkéa-Samsic),  Egan Bernal (Ineos Grenadiers) while setting a blistering pace for Jumbo-Visma and race leader Primož Roglič. 

These performances over the last two weeks have resulted in speculation about whether Van Aert could train to become a Grand Tour contender. 

But the 26-year-old has poured cold water on the suggestion, saying he doesn’t want to lose his speed by shedding wait and training for the mountains. 

He told Het Laatste Nieuws: “To win a Grand Tour you have to perform at the highest level for three weeks, an even higher level than how I perform now. I may now let go at some point in the ride. And the moment I let go, I am completely devastated. If I go for the overall victory, I really have to compete until the last. ” 

Van Aert has been a revelation since joining the WorldTour with Jumbo-Visma in 2019, winning three Tour de France stages, his first Monument Milan-San Remo and Strade Bianche. 

But Van Aert says he still has ambitions in the one-day races, which wouldn’t fit with training to become a Grand Tour rider. 

>>> Egan Bernal abandons the Tour de France 2020

He said: “I also have other ambitions that I want to pursue.

“If I retrain to become a Grand Tour rider, it’s a point of no return . My body will change, I will lose kilos, then I will lose all my qualities to win Classics and to win bunch sprints. 

“I do not want that. That is too much for me.”  

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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.