Tom Pidcock 'born to do mountain bike' after beating Mathieu van der Poel by a minute in Nove Mesto

The Brit showed his class as he won the cross-country final by more than a minute

Tom Pidcock
(Image credit: Getty)

Tom Pidcock beat Mathieu van der Poel by a minute to win his first-ever elite World Cup mountain bike race in the cross-country final at Nove Mesto.

The pair had broken away from the rest of the field early on before Pidcock dropped the Dutchman on the third lap, then solo-ing away to victory and finishing exactly a minute ahead of his rival.

It was a day for broken records, too, as it's been 27 years since a male British rider won an elite round of the World Cup while Pidcock also set the biggest-ever winning margin on the Czech course.

"I think I was born to do mountain bike, to be honest," Pidcock said after the finish.

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"It sounds stupid but I think it's what I've done since I was little and what I've enjoyed the most.

"Coming here and winning an elite World Cup at my second attempt...well...first attempt on an equal playing field it's pretty insane really."

Pidcock will now take a break, having been racing mountain bike events for the past few weeks, and while his spot at the Olympic Games this summer isn't yet guaranteed, it's hard to imagine the Brit not being on the start line.

"It's not frustrating really because I would still be racing here today, doesn't affect what's going on now," Pidcock said of the uncertainty over his ticket to Tokyo.

"I'm certainly in great shape. I'm going to take a break now, and then build hopefully towards the Olympics. I think I've shown what I can do on a mountain bike."

Pidcock had finished second to Van der Poel on Friday in Nove Mesto in the short track event, having won the Swiss Bike Cup earlier this month in his return to mountain biking.

Jonny Long

Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races. I'm 6'0", 26 years old, have a strong hairline and have an adequate amount of savings for someone my age. I'm very single at the minute so if you know anyone, hit me up.


Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab, reporting about students evacuating their bowels on nightclub dancefloors and consecrating their love on lecture hall floors. I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).


I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.