In about two weeks, Mathieu van der Poel will start his cyclocross season and he’s ready to race again after a long rest period.
“I hear him less and less about his back pain. That is a good sign,” sports director Christoph Roodhooft told De Telegraaf.
Van der Poel first suffered from back pain during the Albstadt MTB World Cup in May. After his heavy crash during the Olympic MTB race, the pain intensified, forcing him to cut back on his road program and not have an ideal preparation for the Road World Championships in Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.
After his third place in a spectacular edition of Paris-Roubaix, the Dutchman decided to take a long rest period, in the hope of making a full recovery. Roodhooft now announces that things are going in the right direction.
“He does a lot of core exercises to strengthen his back. It’s looking good and as it develops, I’m assuming it won’t bother him in the long run. Mathieu and the rest of the team are well on schedule.”
After Wout Van Aert announced his intention to win the green jersey at next year’s Tour de France, the Alpecin-Fenix manager Christoph Roodhooft said that his team would seek to challenge him for the title.
“When I hear Van Aert say that he is going for the green jersey, I think: ‘We’ll see about that,’” Christoph Roodhooft said. “If everything goes somewhat normal, that’s a very realistic target for us. I think of Jasper Philipsen or of Mathieu van der Poel.”
“Mathieu is the perfect rider to win the green jersey. The green jersey, and stage wins,” said Philip Roodhooft.