Gutsy ride confirms Cyclo-Cross stars road racing potential
3 x World Cyclo-Cross champion Wout van Aert produces a ride to remember during a rain soaked testing edition of the 2018 Strade Bianche. The 23 year old Belgian star proves he can successfully translate his cyclo-cross prowess to WorldTour road racing with an aggressive performance all the way to the line in Siena.
On the final steep ascent to the finish line Van Aert's efforts took their toll as he came to a standstill with cramps, literally dropping to the ground before picking himself up and remounting to make sure he finished the job and take a well deserved 3rd place podium behind Frenchman Roman Bardet (AG2R-La Mondial) and fellow Belgian Tiesj Benoot (Lotto-Soudal).
"I don’t think I had anything to lose. I did the 'cross season and I wanted to do these races to learn as much as possible. Sometimes you learn more with trying and losing than if you don’t try at all. That was my mindset," he explained after enjoying his moment on the podium in Piazza del Campo in Siena.
Riding in the new White S-Line Suomy Gunwind, Van Aert and his fellow Veranda Williams-Crelan teammates have proven they have the physical and mental qualities needed to produce results and with invites to many of the big early season races confirmed, Van Aert and his team will surely add a new dimension to the Spring Classics over the next few weeks.