Wout van Aert took his first season win at the X2O Badkamers Trophy in Herentals, his hometown. He took the win ahead of Mathieu Van der Poel and Michael Vanthourenhout. Van Aert is the first rider to win on the new course, which was characterized by many technical, hilly sections.
After three podium places in only for races, Wout climbed to the highest step today. As soon as the flag dropped, Wout settled into the wheel of Van der Poel and the duo established a seizable gap over the rest of the pack. As Van der Poel suffered a flat tire halfway, Wout pushed ahead and build a solid 30-second advantage with two more laps to go. Van Aert maintained a fast pace to hold off Van der Poel and to take his first season victory.
Wout van Aert:
“I am really happy with this. Of course I had a stroke of luck because of Mathieu’s flat tire. I really wanted to win today. It all went well, then you can force a victory.”
“I started with too low tire pressure. That was a major reason for why I was a little behind every time. I came back to Mathieu and when I had created a gap, I realised he had a flat tire. I immediately gained an advantage of half a minute and I was able to keep it. The big battle did not come to a climax today, but the mutual respect is great.”