UCI Cycling World Championships 2023
Locations: Glasgow and various locations in Scotland Dates: 3-13 August
Broadcast: Watch live on BBC TV and iPlayer, with over 200 hours of live coverage accessible via BBC’s digital platforms
Dutch cyclist Mathieu van der Poel made a remarkable recovery from a severe crash to clinch the men’s road race at the Cycling World Championships held in Glasgow, which was previously disrupted by a demonstration.
The 28-year-old rider made his move in the final 25km, maintaining his lead even after breaking a shoe during a fall on the rain-drenched roads.
Belgium’s Wout van Aert won the silver medal while Slovenia’s Tadej Pogacar beat Denmark’s Mads Pedersen in a sprint to win the bronze.
Authorities arrested five individuals following a protest that resulted in a delay of 50 minutes.
The 271.1km course, starting from Edinburgh and pausing after approximately 80km due to the protest, concluded with ten laps of a 14.3km loop around the centre of Glasgow.
“It’s a phenomenal feeling. This was one of my primary goals and winning it today is simply incredible,” Van der Poel said in an interview with Sport Newes Center.
“I feel like it almost completes my career. I believe this is one of the most significant victories I’ve ever had on the road.”
Speaking about his crash, he said, “I wasn’t taking unnecessary risks, but suddenly, I found myself on the ground. It was incredibly slippery.
“However, being able to win even after the fall doesn’t make it better, I would have preferred to stay on the bike.
“But if the crash had cost me the world title, I wouldn’t have been able to sleep for a few days.”
One-day classics specialist Van der Poel, who already won Paris-Roubaix and Milan-San Remo this year, launched a swift attack just as Italy’s Alberto Bettiol was on the verge of being overtaken.
Van der Poel gained a lead of over 30 seconds before his bike skidded on a sharp right-hand turn causing him to crash with over 15km left in the race.
Despite a broken shoe, he quickly resumed his quest for the gold medal, re-establishing his lead and started the final circuit with a 32-second advantage over a powerful trio of chasers: Van Aert, Pogacar, and Pedersen.
Sporting a torn jersey and shorts due to the crash, Van der Poel was cheered on to victory as he made his final climb of Montrose Street and entered the last kilometre, crossing the finish line with a lead of one minute and 37 seconds in a high-caliber field.
The title holder from last year, Remco Evenepoel, was among the main contenders in a dwindling lead group as the race entered Glasgow.
However, as the rain started to fall with 55km remaining, Bettiol broke away, leading to challenging conditions on the twisty city circuit.
A similar crash to Van der Poel’s by Ecuador’s Jhonatan Narvaez disrupted the chasing group, resulting in the final top four breaking away and marking the end of Evenepoel’s title defense.
The top British rider, Owain Doull, finished 18th.
Evenepoel finished 25th, just one position above Britain’s Connor Swift, while national champion Fred Wright was among those who did not complete the race.
With about 190km remaining, the lead group of riders was unexpectedly halted near the Carron Valley Reservoir due to protestors blocking the road.
Britain’s Doull was in a breakaway group of nine riders who had gained a seven-minute lead, with the main peloton held back down the road to maintain the gap while police managed the situation.
The environmental group “This Is Rigged” admitted to orchestrating the demonstration, stating that four of their activists were involved.
Van der Poel was seen examining his leg injuries after crossing the finish line.
Final results for the men’s road race:
Mathieu Van der Poel (Netherlands) 6 hours 27 minutes 7 seconds
Wout van Aert (Belgium) +1 minute 37 seconds
Tadej Pogacar (Slovenia) +1 minute 45 seconds
Mads Pedersen (Denmark) same time
Stefan Kung (Switzerland) +3 minutes 48 seconds
Jasper Stuyven (Belgium) same time
Matthew Dinham (Australia) “
Toms Skujins (Latvia) “
Tiesj Benoot (Belgium) “
Alberto Bettiol (Italy) +4 minutes 3 seconds
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Mathieu van der Poel’s victory
Who won the men’s road race at the UCI Cycling World Championships 2023?
Mathieu van der Poel of the Netherlands won the men’s road race at the UCI Cycling World Championships 2023.
Where were the UCI Cycling World Championships 2023 held?
The UCI Cycling World Championships 2023 were held in Glasgow and across various locations in Scotland.
Who were the silver and bronze medalists in the men’s road race?
Belgium’s Wout van Aert won the silver medal, and Slovenia’s Tadej Pogacar won the bronze medal in the men’s road race at the UCI Cycling World Championships 2023.
What happened during the race?
During the race, Mathieu van der Poel recovered from a significant crash to win. A protest also caused a 50-minute delay in the race.
How was the race broadcasted?
The race was broadcasted live across BBC TV and iPlayer, with over 200 hours of live coverage accessible via BBC’s digital platforms.
What other significant races has Mathieu van der Poel won this year?
In addition to the UCI Cycling World Championships, Mathieu van der Poel has also won the Paris-Roubaix and Milan-San Remo races this year.