Mathieu van der Poel’s classics campaign came crashing down before it ever really got started after the cyclocross superstar was taken out in a horrific crash at Nokere Koerse.
The race came down to a bunch sprint on the uphill cobbled finish into Nokere. Max Walscheid (Team Sunweb) was on the front coming into the sprint as he almost fell, but he stayed upright and stopped pedalling.
When he was about 20 riders back, one of the CCC riders hit him. That contact saw Walscheid fall first, bringing down several others. Van der Poel was up against the barriers at the time and came down very awkwardly.
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“Nokere Koerse went completely wrong for our team in the final,” Corendon-Circus stated. “An ugly fall of Mathieu van der Poel in the last hundreds of meters, after which he was taken to the hospital. Fortunately, no fractures were found, only bruises and abrasions. Without unforeseen circumstances, Mathieu can complete his road program as planned.”