Wout van Aert says that riding for the victory in the Tour de France is not a realistic target, but he does want to chase the general classification in one-week races in 2021.
“Expanding my Classic palmares remains a priority. Maybe one day I will change course, but that is still a long way off,” Van Aert tol Sport/Voetbalmagazine.
“I would also like to shine first in Tirreno-Adriatico, the Critérium du Dauphiné or the Tour de Suisse. In the shorter term that is possible, especially in stage races with a time trial, such as Tirreno-Adriatico. I’d like to go for a GC result in 2021, and later in the hilly classics such as Liège-Bastogne-Liège and Il Lombardia.”
“Last season I achieved similar performances as Mathieu in the past in many different top races. I am certainly proud of that,”.
“Even if Mathieu beats me, like in the Tour of Flanders, I am still the second best in the world. That’s not bad either.
“Fortunately, the perception on the road is different than in ‘cross. Because there, it only goes between the two of us, the beaten one is always the ‘loser’ who is worse than the other. But when, as in Flanders, we blow other top riders off our wheel, then everyone realizes how good we are.”
“In cyclo-cross, where we stand out, it’s different. I think more about Mathieu during the week: about how I can beat him, and how I can adjust my training to his strongest qualities,” Van Aert said.
“Losing a ‘cross will certainly be easier to accept than being beaten in the Tour of Flanders. Not that the cross is a sideshow, but it has become a little less important than the road.”