The "MVP" Mathieu Van der Poel Road Discussion Thread

So a lot of riders have their own discussion thread, how about one for one of the most talented guys and his part-time road campaign?

With the failure of his MTB bid for Rio, it seems like MVP will do a bit of road this summer and after some small races in Belgium, he started his first UCI race last thursday on the Boucles de la Mayenne. After a nice prologue (12th) and a sprint stage where he arrived at the front of the peloton (14th), Mathieu was a factor in the second stage, when he attacked with 120 km to the finish line in one of the GPM climbs. He exploded with the bunch and was joined by Kevin Ledanois, Joris Nieuwenhuis, Daniel Hoelgaard and Eliot Lietaer. Yann Guyot and Lluis Mas soon joined the break, who gained a maximum advantage of 3 minutes and was caught just 3 km before the finish, with MVP one of the three late survivors. He is now 9th on the GC at the start of the last stage.

Based on Beobank-Corendon's calendar, he should be in the majority of these races:

02/06 - 05/06 -> Boucles de la Mayenne (2.1)
08/06 - 08/06 -> Ruddervoorde (NE)
12/06 - 12/06 -> Ronde van Limburg (1.1)
19/06 - 19/06 -> Circuit de Wallonie (NE)
29/06 - 29/06 -> Jong maar Moedig Oetingen (1.2)
03/07 - 03/07 -> GP Monseré - Roeselare (NE)
07/07 - 07/07 -> Melle (NE)
12/07 - 12/07 -> Houtem - Vilvoorde (NE)
18/07 - 22/07 -> Ronde van Luik (NE)
27/07 - 31/07 -> Tour Alsace (2.2)
05/08 - 05/08 -> Dwars door het Hageland (1.1)
11/08 - 14/08 -> Czech Cycling Tour (2.1)
21/08 - 21/08 -> GP Scherens - Leuven (1.1)
28/08 - 28/08 -> Schaal Sels (1.1)
14/09 - 14/09 -> GP de Wallonie (1.1)

With no Rio in his schedule, maybe he can go back to L'Avenir and start over last year's bad luck.
 
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I hope he does L'Avenir! There's not many hilly races on the calendar, but I expect him to be able to contend at the Ronde Van Limburg, Ronde Van Luik (but that race is always dominated by cx riders), Dwars Door Het Hageland (since when is this 1.1?) and GP Scherens! He and Wout could really light up road racing too but I like that they choose for riding what they like the most right now, there's still a lot of time for them to develop in road racing!
 
Re:

BalearicBeats said:
I hope he does L'Avenir! There's not many hilly races on the calendar, but I expect him to be able to contend at the Ronde Van Limburg, Ronde Van Luik (but that race is always dominated by cx riders), Dwars Door Het Hageland (since when is this 1.1?) and GP Scherens! He and Wout could really light up road racing too but I like that they choose for riding what they like the most right now, there's still a lot of time for them to develop in road racing!
Though he is 2-3 years younger Iserbyt is a great talent as well, who could do great on the road but he signed a 5.5 year contract a week ago :(.

Hopefully MvP and WvA will join the WT in 2018 though you cant blame them for doing what they love obviously.
 
First win of his 2016 road campaign in the Ruddervoorde Koerse, beating Michael Vingerling (3M) and Jonas Rickaert (Topsport).

Next up is the Ronde van Limburg, a race he won in 2014.
 
If I understood correctly he only said that if he was to switch to the road, it wouldn't be before 2018. His contract with Beobank runs till then. To me he did not sound really motivated but his father is encouraging him to. Besides, Adrie seemed convinced his son can combine both cyclocross and road (while Wout is sure that that is impossible), so he's not read to leave cross. He's said many times he did not like racing road but in the climbs when it's really racing. Wout doesn't like it either, though and is not read to race road at WT level before 2018 at the earliest.

It might be sad news for you but for me it's a relief. I'd be sad when/if they definitively live the field. Stybar no longer racing cross was a tragedy for me.
 
Echoes said:
If I understood correctly he only said that if he was to switch to the road, it wouldn't be before 2018. His contract with Beobank runs till then. To me he did not sound really motivated but his father is encouraging him to. Besides, Adrie seemed convinced his son can combine both cyclocross and road (while Wout is sure that that is impossible), so he's not read to leave cross. He's said many times he did not like racing road but in the climbs when it's really racing. Wout doesn't like it either, though and is not read to race road at WT level before 2018 at the earliest.

It might be sad news for you but for me it's a relief. I'd be sad when/if they definitively live the field. Stybar no longer racing cross was a tragedy for me.
I interpreted the interview different. I think you are saying / typing what you want to hear, but it is not what he means. He certainly looks convinced to make the switch to the road, which is entirely comprehensible. Van der Poel is bigger than the small cyclocross world.

I love cyclocross, or maybe I should say: I used to love cyclocross, when Stybar, Boom, Albert and Nys were racing. Now it's just a bunch of non-charismatic Belgians. Thankfully we have the battle Van Aert vs. Van der Poel, but it's not as entertaining as cyclocross was in the past for me.

Flamin said:
I saw the talkshow. To me, he looked serious and quite eager moving to the road after 2018.
This, indeed.

Ricco' said:
When does his contract end? In the end of the 2018 cross season (so, February of 2018) or at the end of 2018?
The end of 2018.
 
I've often heard Mathieu saying cyclocross is what he loves best of all three disciplines is good at (with MTB and road), whether it be about the races or trainings and he likes MTB better than road. It's not just wishful thinking.

I haven't seen the talk show, so I'll just trust Flamin but after the Worlds last January he clearly said that Wout would be his rival for the coming years. Of course he can change his mind but he's consistently said he didn't like road racing. I've heard Wout and Lars saying similar things too. However because he was himself a prodigy on the road as a novice and as a junior (probably one of the two or three best of his generation), people around him seem to lure him onto the road, in the first place, his own father.
 
Echoes said:
I've often heard Mathieu saying cyclocross is what he loves best of all three disciplines is good at (with MTB and road), whether it be about the races or trainings and he likes MTB better than road. It's not just wishful thinking.

I haven't seen the talk show, so I'll just trust Flamin but after the Worlds last January he clearly said that Wout would be his rival for the coming years. Of course he can change his mind but he's consistently said he didn't like road racing. I've heard Wout and Lars saying similar things too. However because he was himself a prodigy on the road as a novice and as a junior (probably one of the two or three best of his generation), people around him seem to lure him onto the road, in the first place, his own father.
I'm sorry, but you clearly have a cyclocross biased opinion. When I read your post, it sounds like Van der Poel is forced to quit cyclocross. I won't deny his father Adrie wants him to go sooner or later on the road, but believe me, it's also what M. Van der Poel wants. Of course, cyclocross is more fun than 6 hours training on the road, especially for guys like Mathieu who likes to entertain. That doesn't mean he wants to go road racing in a few years. Even Van Aert is considering road racing in the future.

You'll never hear the best cyclocross riders say something wrong about cyclocross, because they love it. Otherwise they won't do it. It's fun, there are a lot of spectators and they earn a great income. But again, this doesn't mean they hate road racing and they don't want to do it.
 
How much do van Aert or van der Poel make at their current teams as 'cross riders? In other words, where would van Aert and van der Poel currently be on the list of highest earning cyclists?
 
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I'm exited to see how far he can go on the road. His main strength in CX seems to be his excellent technique. He seems to be a little down on Van Aert on pure power, but he's still much stronger than anyone else so that shouldn't be a problem. He will surely have a good career going by what he has shown on the road so far and going by that he is better at CX than Stybar and Boom ever were.
 
Re:

TMP402 said:
How much do van Aert or van der Poel make at their current teams as 'cross riders? In other words, where would van Aert and van der Poel currently be on the list of highest earning cyclists?
For cyclocross riders, you have different sources of income: (1) salary payed by the team (2) start money (3) prize money from the races / classifications (World Cup, Superprestige, GVA-trofee) (4) sponsor deals.

I think, in total, Van Aert and Van der Poel earn 800.000 - 1.000.000 a year. It was pretty much known Stybar earned around 1.000.000 in his prime time as a cyclocross rider, so Van Aert and Van der Poel should earn more or less the same, especially when you know it's only these two who attract public.
 
Don't underestimate Styby's value as a cyclocrosser. He was super popular. Both Van Aert and VDP still have a way to go I think to reach that.

I hope so at least. Would be ridiculous if these guys already made so much cash.
 
Re: Re:

Popchu said:
TMP402 said:
How much do van Aert or van der Poel make at their current teams as 'cross riders? In other words, where would van Aert and van der Poel currently be on the list of highest earning cyclists?
For cyclocross riders, you have different sources of income: (1) salary payed by the team (2) start money (3) prize money from the races / classifications (World Cup, Superprestige, GVA-trofee) (4) sponsor deals.

I think, in total, Van Aert and Van der Poel earn 800.000 - 1.000.000 a year. It was pretty much known Stybar earned around 1.000.000 in his prime time as a cyclocross rider, so Van Aert and Van der Poel should earn more or less the same, especially when you know it's only these two who attract public.
So really moving to the road could mean a pay cut, at least at first.
 
Just looked up a bit about Stybar's salary. He reportedly turned down a super lucrative deal in 2013 to return to cx: half a million fixed (plus an estimated 300.000k prize money, start money etc.). So he could never have earned 1 million in 2010. Closer to half a million in total probably.

He went to QS for 525.000k in 2011, not much less than what he earned in cx at the time.
 
Popchu said:
I'm sorry, but you clearly have a cyclocross biased opinion. When I read your post, it sounds like Van der Poel is forced to quit cyclocross. I won't deny his father Adrie wants him to go sooner or later on the road, but believe me, it's also what M. Van der Poel wants. Of course, cyclocross is more fun than 6 hours training on the road, especially for guys like Mathieu who likes to entertain. That doesn't mean he wants to go road racing in a few years. Even Van Aert is considering road racing in the future.

You'll never hear the best cyclocross riders say something wrong about cyclocross, because they love it. Otherwise they won't do it. It's fun, there are a lot of spectators and they earn a great income. But again, this doesn't mean they hate road racing and they don't want to do it.
So I found back Mathieu’s post-race interview after the Zolder Worlds last January.

http://sporza.be/cm/sporza/matchcenter/mc_wielrennen/cat_veldrijden/comp-WK_veldrijden_2016/1.2556631#

It’s the 7th video of the 36, in Dutch. By 2.40 he says

He’s [Wout] a deserved winner. Hopefully he’s my rival for the following years.
These words stroke Karl Vannieuwkerke, the announcer who said:

Those last words are hope giving for the cross – “for the following years” you said – for everybody here want you to stay in the cross and we sure will need this rivalry Van Aert/Van der Poel now that he [Nys] disappears
Mathieu:
I’ve already said it myself and I stand by it. I enjoy cross an awful lot. Sven managed to do it till his 39. That won’t do for me, I think but I think I’ll stay in cyclocross for several years because it’s what I enjoy doing the most of all.
In an interview for Wielerflits on 26 February he said he found mountainbike more enjoyable than road.

http://m.nieuwsblad.be/cnt/dmf20160329_02208994
A video interview of his father Adrianus and Edwig Van Hooydonck (thanks Riccò). The latter regretted that Mathieu would stick to cyclocross and mountainbike. Adrie agreed but said that for the moment Mathieu “finds road racing boring. Hanging on his bike for 4 or 5 hours, he finds it nothing, unless it’s climbing because then it’s really racing but I hope he chooses for the road in two years time without letting the cross down of course. And then we will prove that the combinationis possible.”

These are evidence to me that Mathieu earlier this year would not really rush to the road and was not ready to leave cross behind, whether you like it or not.

Same goes for Wout Van Aert:



“Als kind droomde ik van het veld, niet van de weg”
As a child I dreamed of the field, not of the road
[/quote]

Interview of Het Laatste Nieuws on 22 June this year, prior to the road nats.

Words are self-explanatory.
With regards to money, Van Aert clearly admitted (interview for the GvA on 5 September) he’s got a lot more to gain in cross at this point than on the road and for that reason it would be stupid to start focusing on the road. However if you are a classic winner, you all of a sudden land in another category. The gap between the minimum wages and top earners is smaller in the field than on the road in which some gain 4 or 5 million € a year. But in the field, you have your salary, your start bonuses and you can deal more with private sponsors. The great road teams do not tolerate that. But if he really gets fed up with the cross and still wishes to turn road, then the financial aspect won’t be the incentive.

Besides the Crelan manager isn’t favourable to Van Aert switching to road racing (Het Laatste Nieuws, yesterday) because Van Aert did them a lot of publicity for them during the last cross season and during his road season and there’s no guarantee that it would be the same if he focused on the road at WT level. Besides he claimed that he’s concerned about cyclocross being dear to Wout’s heart.

My opinion is that it’s nowadays possible to make a decent living in cyclocross which was not the case in previous decades. The media coverage here in Belgium is huge and the riders ripe the dividends of it. Niels Albert has also constantly been asked about a possible switch to the road. He had a lot more potential than Stybar and nearly as much as Boom but he was “too much in love with cyclocross” (his own words). A rider like Lars Boom has quickly made it very quickly that his ambitions were set on the road. Stybar has also been attracted very early on about that. Riders like Sean De Bie or Sebastian Langeveld (those I have in mind) left cyclocross while still U23 riders. So I guess some like cross better than others. It seems to be the case for Wout & Mathieu the way it was for Albert.

Finally, I can understand that a guy who despise Gullegem Koerse would do the same with cyclocross (perhaps I should have done without that last sentence but I couldn't refrain)
 
I wanted to lol at those salaries for CX, but then I remember that Sven Kramer (speed skater) used to make more than that and probably still does. But then speed skating is Olympic and he makes more than most speed skating teams annual budget. Pretty comparable sports in that there's only one country where it's a really big deal.
 
Echoes said:
Popchu said:
I'm sorry, but you clearly have a cyclocross biased opinion. When I read your post, it sounds like Van der Poel is forced to quit cyclocross. I won't deny his father Adrie wants him to go sooner or later on the road, but believe me, it's also what M. Van der Poel wants. Of course, cyclocross is more fun than 6 hours training on the road, especially for guys like Mathieu who likes to entertain. That doesn't mean he wants to go road racing in a few years. Even Van Aert is considering road racing in the future.

You'll never hear the best cyclocross riders say something wrong about cyclocross, because they love it. Otherwise they won't do it. It's fun, there are a lot of spectators and they earn a great income. But again, this doesn't mean they hate road racing and they don't want to do it.
X
That's all very nice, you did a lot of research and I agree with the most of it... but I don't know what you want to prove? I never said Van der Poel and Van Aert love road racing more than cyclocross, of course not. I know how beautiful cyclocross is. But their preference for cyclocross, especially at their young age, does not interfere with their ambition sooner or later to go road racing - or at least try it.

Finally, I can understand that a guy who despise Gullegem Koerse would do the same with cyclocross (perhaps I should have done without that last sentence but I couldn't refrain)
This is a big misunderstanding. I laughed at the fact that you were including Gullegem Koerse as an argument in the Velo d'Or-discussion. That's ridiculous, in my opinion. Believe it or not, but I went several times to Gullegem Koerse. I don't despise Gullegem Koerse at all. Neither I despite cyclocross, on the contrary, I love it to see a good cyclocross battle. Too bad nowadays it's only Van Aert and Van der Poel who are interesting for me.

What I trying to say is, road racing is much bigger than the small cyclocross world (all though it's huge in Flanders).

Niels Albert has also constantly been asked about a possible switch to the road. He had a lot more potential than Stybar and nearly as much as Boom but he was “too much in love with cyclocross” (his own words). A rider like Lars Boom has quickly made it very quickly that his ambitions were set on the road.
I wouldn't say Albert had a lot more potential than Stybar.

So I guess some like cross better than others. It seems to be the case for Wout & Mathieu the way it was for Albert.
Well, especially Belgian riders like cross more than others. For me it's logic that riders such as Alaphilippe, Sagan etc. didn't go go further in CX racing.

But again, I don't know what we are discussing. I like cyclocross, but I understand completely why most of the riders go road racing after a while. That's pretty much what I wanted to say.
 
I think that MVP still likes cross more than road racing, but in a few years time what's left for him to win? He was already World Champion, won many, many races. The same for Van Aert. It's a question of motivation. Either they want to be big fishes on a small pond for the rest of their career or they want to achieve other goals.

And in both cases they are very ambitious and I'm sure they want to fight for different goals.
 
“Ik beleef nu inderdaad heel veel plezier aan de cross, maar ik ben wel van plan om ook op de weg mijn kans te wagen”, aldus Van der Poel. “Het is ook voor mij nog onbekend tot wanneer ik in het veld blijf. Ik heb een contract tot eind 2018, misschien is het daarna wel een mooie leeftijd om over te stappen,” geeft hij aan.

What he is saying is he finds cross fun, but he wants to see what he can do on the road, he doesnt know yet till when he wants to stay in the cross but he has a contract till the end of 2018 and he says maybe that is a good moment to switch to road.

Source: http://www.wielerflits.nl/nieuws/214744/mathieu-van-der-poel-ik-denk-dat-ik-over-een-paar-jaar-uitgekeken-zal-zijn-op-het-veldrijden.html/comment-page-1
Their source: Van Gils & gasten (TV show)
 

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