‘I really like city street racing’ - Tadej Pogačar on the ‘enjoyable’ World Championships road race course

Slovenian two-time Tour de France winner took bronze behind rainbow jersey winner Mathieu van der Poel

Tadej Pogacar
(Image credit: Getty Images)

After finishing on the podium in the elite men’s road race at the Glasgow World Championships, Tadej Pogačar said he enjoyed the fast and technical city centre circuit in the Scottish city with its sweeping corners and punchy climbs.

Speaking to the media post-race, the Slovenian explained that he had drawn on his experience of criterium racing when he was younger once the riders had entered the urban circuit.

“I really like city street racing,” he said. “When we were kids, younger, we raced a lot of criteriums so yeah, I really, really enjoy this kind of course with the corners in the city and lots of up and down with the climbs.

“It's not perfect for me but I enjoyed it just until I wasn't enjoying it anymore.”

“It was one of the hardest days I've had on the bike and one of the hardest races I’ve ever done,” he added. “I can definitely say that I'm really really happy that I finished on the podium next to these names."

The elite men took on ten laps of the relentless circuit which eventually took its toll. Multiple big name riders were forced out of contention due to the high pace including Belgium’s Jasper Philipsen.

A video shared on social media showed Pogačar joking with UCI president David Lappartient that the race had been “two laps too much”.

As the race reached its conclusion, Mathieu van der Poel launched a devastating attack and soloed to a resounding victory - made even more impressive after the Dutchman suffered a late crash which left him with a broken shoe.

Pogačar was left in a chase group containing Van Aert and Denmark’s Mads Pedersen. Eventually Van Aert pushed on to snatch silver leaving the Slovenian and Pedersen to battle it out for third. Surprisingly Pogačar edged the Dane in the sprint for the bronze medal which even he struggled to believe himself.

“I knew that I didn't have much of a chance [against Pedersen],” he explained. “On the last lap I tried a few times to attack on the last climb but they were all really strong and I wasn't stronger than Wout or Mads.  I was dreaming about a medal, particularly about the gold medal, but Mathieu was strongest and stayed free.

“I was already seeing myself as the fourth because sprinting against Wout and Mads was almost mission impossible but after such a long and tough race anything can happen.

"Everybody in the group deserved a medal but yeah, I feel I have sympathy for Mads and wish for him that he could have a medal but of course there's only three."

Tadej Pogacar

(Image credit: Getty Images)

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