Biking: Van der Poel wins Tour of Flanders as Alaphilippe crashes out

Cycling: Van der Poel wins Tour of Flanders as Alaphilippe crashes out

(Reuters) – Dutchman Mathieu van der Poel beat his highly effective Belgian rival Wout Van Aert in a photo-finish dash to win the Tour of Flanders ‘Monument’ traditional on Sunday, as world champion Julian Alaphilippe crashed out of the race.

Van der Poel, whose father Adri received the one-day race in 1986, launched the two-man dash and managed to only maintain off Van Aert after 241 kilometres.

Norway’s Alexander Kristoff took third place.

“They’d already referred to as my title twice, however I could not imagine it. I’ve requested for affirmation 10 instances. I’ve no phrases for this. I’m speechless,” mentioned Van der Poel, grandson of the late Frenchman Raymond Poulidor, who received one other of the Monument traditional races – Milan-Sanremo – in 1961.

Alaphilippe, who had cut up the peloton with an assault within the Kopperberg, went head over heels after his proper elbow clipped the again of a race motorcycle 35km from the road after the trio had damaged clear.

The 26-year-old Van der Poel, driving simply in entrance of the Frenchman, narrowly averted the bike on the proper aspect of the highway.

Alaphilippe ultimately sat up, holding his proper arm and screaming in ache earlier than being attended to by race docs earlier than being taken to a hospital the place x-rays confirmed two fractures in his hand.

“A couple of motorbikes needed to go behind us, as a result of our hole was rising, I needed to take revenue as a lot as doable to go behind the moto, and I feel Julian was not concentrating or one thing. It is an actual pity that he hit the moto,” mentioned Van Aert, who had been seeking to turn into the primary rider to win the Tour of Flanders and Milan-Sanremo in the identical 12 months since Eddy Merckx in 1975.

(Reporting by Julien Pretot; Enhancing by Hugh Lawson)

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