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Mathieu Van der Poel wins Telenet Superprestige - Zolder

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ZOLDER BELGIUM DECEMBER 26 Arrival Mathieu Van Der Poel of The Netherlands and Team AlpecinFenix Celebration during the 16th HeusdenZolder World Cup 2020 Men Elite CX SPHeusdenZolder SuperprestigeCX Cyclocross on December 26 2020 in Zolder Belgium Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images

Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) wins in Zolder (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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ZOLDER BELGIUM DECEMBER 26 Arrival Mathieu Van Der Poel of The Netherlands and Team AlpecinFenix Celebration during the 16th HeusdenZolder World Cup 2020 Men Elite CX SPHeusdenZolder SuperprestigeCX Cyclocross on December 26 2020 in Zolder Belgium Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images

Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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ZOLDER BELGIUM DECEMBER 26 Arrival Wout Van Aert of Belgium and Team Jumbo Visma Lars Van Der Haar of The Netherlands and Team Telenet Baloise Lions during the 16th HeusdenZolder World Cup 2020 Men Elite CX SPHeusdenZolder SuperprestigeCX Cyclocross on December 26 2020 in Zolder Belgium Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images

Wout van Aert cruises in for second over Lars van der Haar (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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ZOLDER BELGIUM DECEMBER 26 Mathieu Van Der Poel of The Netherlands and Team AlpecinFenix Zolder Circuit during the 16th HeusdenZolder World Cup 2020 Men Elite CX SPHeusdenZolder SuperprestigeCX Cyclocross on December 26 2020 in Zolder Belgium Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images

Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) en route to victory (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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ZOLDER BELGIUM DECEMBER 26 Wout Van Aert of Belgium and Team Jumbo Visma Zolder Circuit Detail view during the 16th HeusdenZolder World Cup 2020 Men Elite CX SPHeusdenZolder SuperprestigeCX Cyclocross on December 26 2020 in Zolder Belgium Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images

Wout van Aert on the chase (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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ZOLDER BELGIUM DECEMBER 26 Start Mathieu Van Der Poel of The Netherlands and Team AlpecinFenix Eli Iserbyt of Belgium and Team Pauwels Sauzen Bingoal Wout Van Aert of Belgium and Team Jumbo Visma Peloton Zolder Circuit Public Landscape during the 16th HeusdenZolder World Cup 2020 Men Elite CX SPHeusdenZolder SuperprestigeCX Cyclocross on December 26 2020 in Zolder Belgium Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images

The start in Zolder (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) put on a master class to claim his fourth victory in a row in Heusden-Zolder on a fast, hard-packed course at the Circuit Terlamen.

Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) suffered an early puncture but rode himself back into contention then left the rest of the chasers behind to claim second. Lars van der Haar (Telenet-Baloise) sprinted from the chase group for third.

“When you hear something like that, you shouldn't wait. I didn't want to let him get back into the race, I think that makes sense ”, Van der Poel said of Van Aert's misfortune.

“I tried to increase the pace and got a gap. Just then Iserbyt crashed, which is a shame for him, but that made the difference in one go quite big. That way I could set my own pace for the rest of the hour."

The race was much different than Van der Poel and Van Aert's last meeting at Herentals, fast and dry rather than thick and heavy with mud. Van der Poel got the hole shot while Van Aert rocketed up from a third row start to third wheel in the first few turns.

British champion Tom Pidcock (Trinity Racing) came to grief on a u-turn and had to go to the pit for a new bike, put at an immediate disadvantage at the back of the race.

Van Aert took the lead on the opening lap but then suffered a rear wheel puncture, trading bad luck with Van der Poel who lost the lead due to a flat in Herentals.

With Van Aert gone, and only Van der Haar, Eli Iserbyt (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal) and his teammate Laurens Sweeck and Corne van Kessel and Daan Soete left in front, Van der Poel twisted the throttle and forged a gap on the second lap.

By the third lap, the world champion had enough of a gap that no one would come back.

Iserbyt, the leader of the Superprestige series, launched a furtive chase but crashed, suffering what appeared to be a broken elbow and was stretchered away.

The crash disrupting the chase, Van der Poel's gap went out over 30 seconds as Van Aert made his way back to the group with Michael Vanthourenhout (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal).

Van Aert bided his time with the gap hovering just under a minute until the penultimate lap, when he attacked in pursuit of the podium with Vanthourenhout trying but failing to scramble across.

Pidcock, having chased the entire race from the last positions, rode his way into the top 10 in ninth.

Full Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Mathieu van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix 1:02:07
2Wout van Aert (Bel) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:00:38
3Lars van der Haar (Ned) Telenet Baloise Lions 0:00:39
4Laurens Sweeck (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:00:44
5Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:00:48
6Corne van Kessel (Ned) Circus-Wanty Gobert 0:00:51
7Toon Aerts (Bel) Telenet Baloise Lions 0:00:55
8Gianni Vermeersch (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix 0:00:59
9Thomas Pidcock (GBr) Trinity Racing 0:01:01
10Daan Soete (Bel) Group Hens-Maes Containers 0:01:08
11Ryan Kamp (Ned) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:01:20
12Timo Kielich (Bel) Credishop-Fristads 0:01:22
13Felipe Orts Lloret (Spa) Teika-BH-Gsport 0:01:57
14David van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix 0:02:15
15Tim Merlier (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix 0:02:23
16Tom Meeusen (Bel) Group Hens-Maes Containers 0:02:24
17Joris Nieuwenhuis (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:02:29
18Joran Wyseure (Bel) Acrog-Tormans Balen BC 0:02:44
19Thomas Mein (GBr) Tormans Cyclo Cross Team 0:02:48
20Nicolas Cleppe (Bel) Telenet Baloise Lions 0:02:53
21Quinten Hermans (Bel) Circus-Wanty Gobert 0:03:07
22Thibau Nys (Bel) Telenet Baloise Lions 0:03:12
23Emiel Verstrynge (Bel) Tormans Cyclo Cross Team
24Curtis White (USA) Cannondale-CyclocrossWorld 0:03:17
25Diether Sweeck (Bel) Credishop-Fristads 0:03:20
26Sean de Bie (Bel) Bingoal WB 0:03:24
27Thijs Aerts (Bel) Telenet Baloise Lions 0:03:28
28Yentl Bekaert (Bel) Telenet Baloise Lions
29Jim Aernouts (Bel) Telenet Baloise Lions 0:03:36
30David Menut (Fra) Cross Team Legendre 0:03:49
31Lander Loockx (Bel) Group Hens-Maes Containers 0:03:52
32Steve Chainel (Fra) Cross Team Legendre 0:04:13
33Sascha Weber (Ger) MTB Freiburg 0:04:26
34Dieter Vanthourenhout (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:04:29
35Ingmar Uytdewilligen (Bel) Tarteletto-Isorex CX Team 0:04:31
36Arne Baers (Bel) 0:04:33
37Arno van den Broeck (Bel) 0:04:39
38Mario Junquera San Millan (Spa) 0:04:40
39Julian Siemons (Bel) 0:04:48
40Loris Rouiller (Swi) Alpecin-Fenix 0:05:01
41Ward Huybs (Bel) Telenet Baloise Lions 0:05:08
42Tom Mainguenaud (Fra) 0:05:17
43Mickaël Crispin (Fra) Cross Team Legendre 0:05:18
44Michael Van den Ham (Can) 0:05:31
45Len Dejonghe (Bel) Group Hens-Maes Containers 0:05:41
46Stan Godrie (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg 0:05:47
47Luke Verburg (Ned) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:05:50
48Kyle Agterberg (Ned) 0:05:58
49Thomas Verheyen (Bel) 0:06:23
50Florian Richard Andrade (Fra) Cross Team Legendre
51Jens Gys (Bel)
52Arne Vrachten (Bel)
53Yves Coolen (Bel)
54Florian Vermeersch (Bel) Lotto Soudal
55Lilian Schneider (Fra) Cross Team Legendre
56Robin Alderweireld (Bel)
57Heinrich Haussler (Aus) Bahrain McLaren
58Vincent Oger (Bel)
DNFEli Iserbyt (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal
DNFMarcel Meisen (Ger) Alpecin-Fenix
DNFJelle Camps (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal
DNFBen Turner (GBr) Trinity Racing
DNFGianni Siebens (Bel)
DNFRonan Auffret (Fra) Team Podiocom CC
DNFJustin Laevens (Bel) Proximus-Alphamotorhomes-Doltcini CT
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