Punctures, crashes and heat wreck Strade Bianche for Van der Poel, Nibali and Gilbert

SIENA ITALY AUGUST 01 Start Mathieu Van der Poel of The Netherlands and Team AlpecinFenix during the Eroica 14th Strade Bianche 2020 Men a 184km race from Siena to SienaPiazza del Campo StradeBianche on August 01 2020 in Siena Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images
A puncture ruined Mathieu van der Poel's chances at Strade Bianche (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Professional cycling can be a cruel sport and Strade Bianche can be an especially cruel race: a badly timed puncture, a bad line through the deepest gravel or a missed bidon in the heat can end a race. After all the hype and expectation following months of training camps and preparation, the scorching Tuscan sun and the steep dirt climbs made a first real selection and race result.

Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) carefully navigated all the obstacles to win solo in Piazza de Campo but his expected rivals Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep), Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix), Vincenzo Nibali (Trek-Segafredo), Philippe Gilbert (Lotto Soudal) and Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) all faltered for one reason or another, with the choice to use disc wheels and team cars distanced behind the peloton, making wheel changes more laborious

Thank you for reading 5 articles in the past 30 days*

Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read any 5 articles for free in each 30-day period, this automatically resets

After your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59

Join now for unlimited access

Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1